Range Rover Velar is probably everything you would expect from a Land Rover. It is big. But, the moment you turn on the engine and pull out of the parking space it is a revelation. This 4×4 is so much more graceful than you would imagine.
Make no mistake, this is an expensive car. But the comfort and the drive are well worth that extra spend.
We worked hard to put the Range Rover Velar through its paces. Through heavy London traffic and narrow Cornwall roads, the Velar deserves a little splashing out.
Big on the outside, big on the inside
The first thing you will notice about the Range Rover Velar is how big it is. We see Land Rovers and Range Rovers on the streets of London everyday. But this one stands out.
While it is intimidating to look at, this works in its favour. The inside is spacious. And while we didn’t have three people in the back, there was more than enough space according to our passengers.
Leg-room, tick. Head-room, tick. Shoulder-room, tick.
And with all that space comes comfort. The seats were firm and great to sit in for a long-haul. Seven hours to Cornwall from London and not one stiff muscle to be felt.
You are able to adjust every seat, which only adds to that comfort. Unlike in cheaper cars, the rear passenger seats are adjustable too. And in the front, handy controls on the side let you get that perfect position for the driver and the navigator. There’s even a little panel so you can save your favourite sitting position, if you share driving.
All that tech is handy
And that little panel is just the start.
The Range Rover Velar is well kitted out for the tech-loving and tech-wary. There is a gadget or gizmo for every little thing, but most importantly it is easy to use.
The biggest thing you’ll notice id the main front console. It’s made up of two big touch-screens, and looks every bit like a really sophisticated tablet. The upper screen is for media. It manages your phone, the radio and more. Naturally, you can sync it up to Spotify with ease. The bottom one handles climate control, driving modes, and all the other functions you expect in a modern day car.
And while it may be a bit much to take in, the best bit is all of it is intuitive. No one found it difficult working through the touchscreens to get the car the way we wanted it. Whether it was the perfect temperature for a hot summer day, the best mode for the terrain, or getting that music pumping for a road trip.
Connecting everyone’s phone via bluetooth was easy and hassle free. On top of that there were plenty of charging points, so no one was complaining of low battery on long journeys, when our passengers were spending too much time on WhatsApp and Grindr.
And for the driver, it is all as helpful as it could be.
The controls on the steering wheel are clear and cover every function you need. The dashboard display gives you enough control to show you the things your want to see. And the heads-up speed and sat-nav display on the windscreen means you almost never have to take your eyes off the road.
Though, the camera warning system could be a little less intrusive.
Driving the Range Rover Velar is a pleasure
With all that kit it should be no surprise that the driving itself is great.
We had the 2.0 litre automatic Range Rover Velar. It was quick off a standstill and effortless at high speeds down the motorway. Gear changes always felt responsive to different styles of driving. Everything is made to help the driver feel at ease.
While London and the motorway were excellent challenges for the Velar, the real test came in Cornwall.
Tight and narrow country lanes, low visibility with roads seemingly carved through the hills and topped with high hedges. Terrain that was one moment smooth road and the next, rough ground.
But the Range Rover Velar took it in stride. Accelerating and braking are both reassuringly immediate. You touch the pedal and get the response you want, especially when a native comes round that blind bend.
On top of that, and its greatest boon, all the tight turns and all the narrow spaces were a breeze. I felt confident I could get around anything after only a few maneuvers. It was nice to know something so big could be so nimble.
This 4×4 is a contender
Starting at £64,160 the Range Rover Velar is up there as an expensive 4×4, when measured against its peers. But, as with its peers, you’ll never worry about running out of space, whether it is with your family or your furry friend.
The 60 litre diesel tank is a sight to behold at the petrol pump. It feels like it will never be full. But, going the 250 miles from London to Cornwall, the tank was still half full and we felt sure it could have made the journey back again.
If you want a bit of luxury and are looking at spending that much more on your 4×4, then the Ranger Rover Velar should be high on your list.