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By Jim Flammang
February 27, 2002
Vehicle Overview Details on 2002 changes for the largest and most costly model from Land Rover are not yet available. With a 222-horsepower, 4.6-liter V-8 engine, the Range Rover has a four-speed-automatic transmission and comes in SE and HSE trims. Five occupants fit inside and enjoy leather upholstery and wood interior trim. Side-impact airbags are standard for the front seats.
A satellite-based navigation system is standard on the HSE and optional on the SE. Plotting courses on both paved roads and offroad terrain, the system is capable of dropping what Land Rover calls digital bread crumbs that allow the driver to retrace the previous route. Ford recently acquired Land Rover from BMW and added the British automaker to its Premier Automotive Group, which includes Aston Martin, Jaguar, Lincoln, Mercury and Volvo.
Exterior The Range Rover uses body-on-frame construction and a ladder-type steel frame. Body panels are made of weight-saving aluminum alloy or zinc-coated steel. The rear window swings up, and the tailgate drops down. In this four-door SUV, the spare tire stores inside and underneath the cargo floor. The SE wagon has 16-inch tires, and the HSE runs on 18-inchers. The overall length and width are similar to the Land Rover Discovery Series II, but the Range Rover rides a longer wheelbase at 108.1 inches.
Interior You expect luxury in the Range Rover, and you get it, with its aromatic leather upholstery, wood trim and roomy interior. Naturally, superior audio is part of the luxury experience. The Range Rover SE has a 300-watt Alpine unit with 12 speakers and a six-CD changer, while the HSE uses a 460-watt six-speaker system.
Under the Hood A 222-horsepower, 4.6-liter V-8 engine teams with a four-speed-automatic transmission in all Range Rovers. Permanently engaged four-wheel drive splits power among the wheels as needed for maintaining traction and includes a Low range for crawling up and down mountains and other offroad obstacles. Four-wheel traction control is standard. The Range Rovers air suspension automatically lowers the vehicle for easier entry and exit, and it adjusts ride height to suit the vehicles speed and driving conditions. All-disc antilock brakes and side-impact airbags are standard.