Published on September 3rd, 2014 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Range Rover Diesel Test Drive Review
This is the new king of the hill. The ultimate 4×4 SUV. The 4×4 of choice for movie stars and members of the royal family in many nations. It has been an icon in Africa and North America and at home in England it is the choice of many well heeled individuals to carry a status symbol best described as the ultimate luxury 4×4 vehicle.
Now comes a facelifted Range Rover sporting an all new 4.4-litre SDV8 (diesel) engine. It replaces the previous diesel which has seen a lot of duty around the world with no issue. Even with our Euro 2M diesel quality, this new diesel powerplant has been tuned to provide maximum driver enjoyment and plenty of exhilarating torque. The power and torque have soared, from 272PS and 640Nm, to 339PS at 3,500rpm and a staggering 700Nm torque at just 1,750rpm. More important is the way the power and torque interact with one another for impressive overall performance. Maximum torque is available from 1,750rpm to 3,000rpm but then maximum power kicks in from 3,250rpm to 4,000rpm producing a wall of performance from idle onwards. None of this has been achieved at the expense of refinement though and the 4.4-litre LR-SDV8’s power delivery remains silky smooth and whisper quiet throughout the engine speed range.
The engine is not the only new item for the Range Rover. It also sports a new ‘Exterior Design Pack’ option which gives customers the chance to give their Land Rover Range Rover a more individual look and new colours and wheels have been added to the range.
There is also a new TFT instrument cluster system for the driver and the Jaguar inspired gear shifter that works the new ZF 8HP70 8-speed gearbox for even better fuel efficiency. This new ZF 8HP70 8-speed transmission is tuned to take advantage of the LR-SDV8’s low end torque with torque converter lock-up being selected as early as possible to reduce slip and energy loss. The wider ratio spread, tall overdriven top gear and the fact that no more than two internal clutches are open at any one time all contribute to improved fuel economy and emissions.
The 8HP70 matches the engine speed to its turbine speed in anticipation of oncoming downshifts for an absolutely smooth transition from one ratio to the next. Closer ratios also contribute to making individual downshifts smoother as do control systems which pick-up the engine revs during downshifts.
Driver controls include steering wheel-mounted paddle-shift as standard enabling the driver to take control of gear shifting manually. The CommandShift lever is replaced by a rotary knob for selecting park, reverse, neutral, drive or sport modes, the last of these optimising the gearbox response times for maximum acceleration, improved response and sharper upshifts. The selector knob is flush with the centre console when the ignition is switched off, rising up when it is switched on. To avoid confusion, the Terrain Response® Rotary Switch is replaced by a new Terrain Response® Optimisation Switch.
Entertainment for the driver and passengers come from a Logic 7, 1200W Harman Kardon High Dynamics Audio System. Widely acknowledged as one of the finest in-car audio systems in the world, the Logic 7 has 15 independent channels driving 19 premium quality speakers. The Range Rover’s European leather trim for headlining and door casings combined with sumptuous leather seat trim and upgraded waterfall lighting, cosset the occupants in luxury. The driver gets a new 12-inch TFT instrument display that provides greater versatility than conventional instruments while the 8-inch Dual View infotainment screen displays a different image to driver and passenger. This means, for example, the driver can view the navigation display while the passenger watches a video. All this gives the new Range Rover driver a truly luxurious drive experience and the best dynamics for the 4×4 luxury SUV segment.
Range Rover SDV8 Diesel SPECIFICATIONS
Engine V8 Turbo Diesel
Transmission 8-Speed semiauto
Max Output 339bhp @ 3500rpm
Max Torque 700Nm @ 1750-3000rpm
0-100km/h 6.5 seconds
Top Speed 218km/h
Price: From RM949,888.00