Mark Jones
Road Test Editor
2 minute read
19 Feb 2014
2:00 pm

New Range Rover Sport delivers

Mark Jones

The all-new Range Rover Sport is said to be the fastest, most agile and responsive Land Rover ever, The company says that by running a lightweight suspension design and innovative dynamic chassis technologies, the Sport's all-new, first-in-class aluminium architecture achieves weight saving of up to 420kg, which transforms the vehicle's dynamic performance.

I was looking forward to road testing the monster 5.0 litre V8 Supercharged model to prove this beyond a doubt but unfortunately a small admin error crept in and we were delivered the less powerful 3.0 V6 Supercharged but highly specced HSE model. And since we have no previous data to compare with on this model, we felt a driving impression would be the way to go until the big brother 5.0 litre V8 arrives to get all road data technical.

Make no mistake the Supercharged 3.0 V6 – that comes in at R1 042 300 before you fit any options – is no slouch with a good 250kW of power and 450Nm of torque on tap that sees a claimed 0-100 km/h time of only 7.2 seconds and an average fuel consumption claim of 11.3 litres per 100 km.

The Sport is a much improved executive SUV with a ton of street cred that now can hold its own in any BMW or Mercedes-Benz type company. And should I want to get it dirty I know I have the backing of a real off-roader to go anywhere without fear of getting stuck. That said, this particular model derivative would not be my first choice. If I could stretch the budget around another R200k I would opt for a more fuel-efficient 4.4 V8 turbodiesel or go for the afore-mentioned 5.0 V8 supercharged monster.

As the better half of an offbeat motoring journalist, my wife, Andrea, is constantly exposed to new cars, old cars and race cars. This is her take on the Range Rover Sport HSE: “This SUV had every luxury bell and whistle one could ask for. You just get in and drive anywhere in style. I also reckon with the easy button selection for all the serious 4×4 things that the guys do, I too could have taken this Rangie off-road if I wanted to. But I couldn’t see myself scratching it though, so on the streets it would stay. Talking of streets, if there was a downside for me it was the sheer size of the Rangie that took some getting used to when trying to navigate narrow roads and parking lots at the shopping centres. But that was the only complaint I had.”