The unveiling of the new Range Rover SV Coupé gives Land Rover an opportunity to compete more directly with a plethora of luxury SUVs, than ever before – including the Bentley Bentayga, Lamborghini Urus and forthcoming Rolls-Royce Cullinan.
Although Range Rover models have an SUV heritage its new rivals lack, this is the first time that Land Rover has been able to offer a car at the same exclusive, high-end level.
Like the SVAutobiography, the SV Coupé falls under Jaguar Land Rover’s Special Vehicle Operations division, which has been ramping up its activities over the past couple of years. In addition to creating the Range Rover SVAutobiography, SVO is responsible for the Range Rover Sport SVR and for the Discovery SVX. These cars focus on the three core areas of luxury (SV), high-performance (SVR) and off-road (SVX) – with more models planned for each.
The SV Coupé is a so-called Collector’s Edition, in a similar vein to the 2017 Jaguar XE SV Project 8 and 2014 F-Type Project 7 – in the sense that the car will have a limited production run.
It is the first model to be built from ground-up at SVO’s Technical Centre in Coventry. While the Project 8 starts with a standard XE body and is then modified, SVO has created a unique body for the SV Coupé. It uses the platform of a standard Range Rover with minor modifications and builds its own body shell on to that. The only parts left from a standard Range Rover are the bonnet and the lower half of the tailgate.
The two-door SV Coupé has dimensions which are very similar to a standard four-door Range Rover. The car is 8mm lower and 13mm longer. It is also offered with 23-inch wheels – a first for Land Rover.
The optional two-tone seats – the rear seats are made from dark leather while the front ones are lighter – are intended to highlight the model’s driver focus.
Although the SV Coupé is a design-focused model, it is also the fastest full-sized Range Rover yet, achieving 0-100kph in 5.3sec and a top speed of 266kph. Thus, the Range Rover Sport SVR remains the quickest in the line-up, covering the 0-100kph sprint in 4.5sec.
The SV Coupé uses the same powertrain as the Range Rover SVAutobiography LWB – a 5.0-litre supercharged V8 petrol engine producing 565hp and 700Nm of torque, mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission with a rotary drive selector and paddle shifters.
It has permanent four-wheel drive with a two-speed transfer box and active locking rear differential assisted by Land Rover’s Terrain Response 2 system, which has six settings that alter the car’s responses to suit different terrain.
The 8mm-lower ride height over a standard Range Rover delivers “enhanced dynamic performance and aesthetics”, claims the carmaker. The car can lower itself by 15mm when moving above 105kph to improve stability and fuel economy.
The suspension has five height settings – including the most extreme Off Road 2, which raises the car 75mm above its normal ride height at up to 50kph. The suspension also increases by 30-40mm if an obstacle is detected and a further manually selectable 30-40mm rise above that is available. The SV Coupé has a 3,500kg towing capability, the same as a standard Range Rover and Bentley Bentayga, and a 900mm maximum wading depth.
Inside, the leather interior is available in a choice of four dual-tone colours as well as four single-tone colours. Seats are heated and cooled; with 20-way-adjustable front seats and 10-way-adjustable rear seats with a unique diamond quilt design.
SVO has also created a new veneer inspired by boat design and called Nautica veneer, which will eventually roll-out to other special models. It uses a patented new form-following process to fuse walnut and sycamore together. Two other veneer options are also available.
The car features power-close doors for the first time on a Range Rover. “The doors are so large [1.4m long] you can’t reach,” said SVO director Mark Stanton.
The SV Coupé’s infotainment system echoes that of recent Range Rovers such as the Velar. Its InControl Touch Pro Duo system includes a 10.0-inch display, a 10.0-inch control panel and a 12.0-inch interactive driver display. There is also a 10.0-inch head-up display and a 1700W 23-speaker Meridian 3D Signature sound system.
2018 Geneva motor show image gallery