Rising Star – Range Rover Evoque
When I recently had the opportunity to drive the Range Rover Evoque I wasn’t sure what to expect. My earlier impressions of Range Rovers and Land Rovers had been clouded by a pair of knackered Discoveries and a very tatty Freelander.
Fortunately the Evoque turned out to be better than that. Much better. It drives incredibly well, it has that upmarket feel that you’d expect from a car bearing the Range Rover name, and there are some very nice design features to discover.
In fact the Evoque is turning into something of a rising star in the world of UK manufacturing. It is proving to be such a global hit that production has had to be increased to cope with demand, and that means 300 new jobs have been created at the Land Rover plant in Halewood, near Liverpool.
There’s also the not insignificant matter of another £1 billion being spent with UK suppliers, making Jaguar Land Rover’s commitment to the UK supply chain a staggering £3 billion over the next four years.
At the moment there seems to be very little that the Evoque can do wrong. Even Mrs Beckham, who was originally touted as influencing the design of the Evoque, has returned to Range Rover to produce a limited edition of the compact off-roader. The result is a tidy-looking creation dressed in dark grey paint with interior leather chosen by Mrs Beckham.
At an eye-watering £79,995 it is little more than an extravagant marketing exercise, and will doubtless only be bought by well-heeled Victoria fans, but it does keep the Evoque range squarely in the sights of potential customers.
Meanwhile, in more down-to-earth publications, the Evoque is winning all sorts of awards. It was recently voted Car Of The Year by Diesel Car magazine, as well as Best Crossover, with the judges acclaiming the Evoque as “stunning to look at and stunning to drive … a car that is instantly a classic”. Parkers declared it their top 4×4 in their New Car Awards for 2012. It was World Design Car Of The Year … the list goes on. As things stand, the Range Rover Evoque has won 103 awards across the globe.
Take a look for yourself in the following video review. Looks good, doesn’t it?
So, expect to see a lot more of the Evoque on the road and when you do, just remember that it is one of the few good things going for the British economy at the moment.