Competes with: Audi Q5, BMW X3, Infiniti QX50, Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class
Looks like: The current Range Rover Evoque got Velar-ified
Drivetrain: 246-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder or 296-hp, turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder with mild-hybrid system; nine-speed automatic transmission; all-wheel drive
Hits dealerships: Spring 2019
Eight years ago, Land Rover’s first-generation Range Rover Evoque ushered in the current era of styling for the British luxury SUV brand. It also expanded the Range Rover sub-brand to three models — en route to the current four — and set Land Rover on a course to fill every niche SUV segment it could. Now we have the redesigned second-generation Evoque, which hits U.S. dealers in the second quarter of 2019 as a 2020 model, Land Rover confirmed to Cars.com. It will likely compete stateside against compact luxury SUVs like the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class.
With roughly the same footprint but a slightly longer wheelbase, the redesigned Evoque combines the assertive lines of its predecessor with a lot of cues from the new Range Rover Velar: thin strips of front and rear lighting, with offset LED circles up front and a dark strip that connects the taillights. Horizontal strakes divide the vertical air inlets on each side of the front bumper, and most areas appear free of extraneous cladding — much appreciated in an era where automakers are cladding the bejesus out of grilles and bumper openings to make them seem larger than they really are.
The rising beltline and descending roofline remain hallmarks of the first-gen Evoque, which had better visibility than you’d think from such a shape. Wheels range up to 21 inches in diameter. An important caveat: Land Rover’s images show the European-spec Evoque; the U.S. version may have different visual elements. Land Rover says it will debut at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show come February, with more details and U.S. pricing unveiled then.
The Evoque’s skyward-canted dashboard and waterfall center console remain, though the controls now share a lot with those in the Velar and Range Rover Sport, including its stacked InControl Touch Pro Duo touchscreens (10 inches apiece in the Evoque) with multifunction knobs on the lower unit. Land Rover promises Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability and available 12.3-inch virtual gauges. Press photos show plenty of double-stitched surfaces, which suggests similar sumptuous materials to what you get in the outgoing Evoque. Should shoppers want something other than leather upholstery, Land Rover promises a few alternatives, including a Kvadrat wool blend.
Land Rover promises more backseat knee clearance, 6 percent more luggage space and greater room to store small items. Technologies include new 180-degree front camera views that can show what’s under the front of the vehicle to aid low-speed maneuvers. A camera-based rearview mirror, meanwhile, can show what’s behind the car without intrusion from passengers or structural impediments.
Related: More 2018 L.A. Auto Show Coverage
Under the Hood
A 2.0-liter four-cylinder makes 246 horsepower, while a high-output version makes 296 hp. The latter pairs with a new, 48-volt mild-hybrid system and belt-integrated starter-generator, which helps the engine shut off when coasting at speeds slower than 11 mph. In turn, it uses energy captured during deceleration to help accelerate the vehicle later on. Both motors pair with a nine-speed automatic transmission.
Adaptive shock absorbers are available. The standard all-wheel drive features a disconnecting center axle that can drive just front wheels to help better fuel efficiency; an optional, fully variable center differential aids handling. Land Rover’s Terrain Response 2 system adds an automatic mode atop the Evoque’s five-mode Terrain Response system. Ground clearance is 8.3 inches – the same as the current Evoque – and Land Rover says the new Evoque can ford nearly 2 feet of water now, up from the prior 19.7 inches.
Forward automatic emergency braking and lane keep assist are standard. Adaptive cruise control and lane-centering steering are optional, the latter a new feature for Land Rover.
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