SEATTLE, March 15, 2016 — There is really not much of an introduction needed when it comes to the long-standing brand of Land Rover. Its pedigree stretches back for more than 50 years and has a loyal, worldwide fan base. When one thinks of a rugged off-road vehicle that’ll get you around in the sand dunes of the Sahara or the jungles of Congo – it’s hard to not conjure up images of old-school Land Rovers. Their iconic, distinguished looks and off-road prowess have represented the best of the off-road life for a long time.
There is perhaps no vehicle in its line-up today that’s more iconic than that of the Range Rover. It’s really a vehicle that helped shape and mold Land Rover into what it is today – a world-leading producer of luxury off-road vehicles with serious capabilities.
This LWB (long wheel base) edition is one of the roomier SUVs you’ll find on the market today. It’s liken to having your own off-road limousine of sorts. With the naked eye, it’s rather easy to spot the LWB as the rear passenger doors are clearly quite a bit longer than the standard sized Range Rover.
Powered by a thirsty 5.0-Liter V8 that develops 510 horsepower with 461 lb-ft. of torque, the Range Rover LWB catapults to 60 miles per hour at a neck-snapping 5.5-seconds. Not too shabby for a vehicle which tips the scales at just over 5300 pounds. Its eight-speed automatic transmission rips through all the gears smoothly and does an admirable job of adjusting itself to the off-road drive mode the driver selects. The EPA gives a rating of 14 around town and up to 19 on the highway, but let’s be honest here – who buys a Range Rover for fuel economy?
What makes this a Range Rover, of course, is the legendary 4×4 system that Land Rover is known for. There are driver adjustments for both the height of the vehicle and the terrain type. You’ll find that there isn’t much that can stop a Range Rover in the off-road world – it all depends on how much you care if it gets scratched on some of the more closed-in trails out there.
The Range Rover imparts a good level of confidence into the driver that it will respond appropriately to most any condition you can throw its way. Although the brakes can feel a bit heavy, it does stop very assuredly and never gets squirrelly on you.
Land Rover’s interior will wrap all passengers in a sense of upscale luxury and compliments that with a Meridian audio system that has very good sound quality, however, it could use better bass response. The DTS surround mode does help your music have a better sound stage and imaging – that is to say, when you listen to music, it sounds more “live” than just standard stereo does in most autos.
Power seats abound and the overall comfort of them is sublime. One can’t help but feel a bit “tiny” inside as its overall roominess feels massive. It’s as if you could easily pass a football back and forth between the front and rear rows. Actually, the best seats in the house are the rear two captain chairs – it’s a lap of luxury that’ll keep you relaxed and comfortable. If ever there was a large-sized SUV you’d want to take on a road trip, it’s this one, at least when it comes to comfort and ride quality.
Are there other large SUVs that offer as much comfort and ride quality? You bet. Are they cheaper? In some cases, yes. So why shell out over $115,000 for this ride? Because you can, and because the off-road capabilities destroy many others in its class and it arguably has some of the best styling you’ll find on the road today in the SUV world.