Range Rover Sport SVR review, test drive

    Never before has a Land Rover model been so road focussed. Presenting the Sport SVR – the maddest Range Rover of them all.

    Published on Mar 23, 2016 12:32:00 PM


    The Range Rover Sport – it’s a car that’s never quite lived up to the last word in its name. Sure, it has always represented its brand name very well, being able to traverse any and all sorts of terrain with consummate ease, but sporty it was not. Yes, you could have the standard car with a 503bhp V8 under the bonnet, but it was still a bit of a hot-rod – power and not much else. Surely this, the SVR, is the version to finally make us believe. That’s because it’s the product of Jaguar Land Rover’s new in-house Special Vehicle Operations division, or SVO. That’s right, JLR finally has a proper alternative to BMW M and Mercedes-AMG, and this is the first Land Rover vehicle to come from it. It was also, until very recently, the fastest SUV to ever lap the Nürburgring, with a time of just 8min 14sec. It’s clearly something a little more special, then.

    For a start, it does a good job in the looks department, and that’s because it’s got enough flash without being too over the top. These dual-purpose vehicles need to have a little subtlety if they’re going to be proper ‘sleepers’ at the traffic lights, but then when you’re spending so much on a car so special, you want it to stand out from the V6 diesels of the world. So, even if you forego the Estoril Blue paint, you still get 21-inch chrome wheels, a ferocious rear diffuser with quad tailpipes flanking it, an aggressive front bumper with massive air intakes and a pair of glossy black vents down the flanks.

    Big rear diffuser, massive vents and intakes, loads of gloss black and 21-inch wheels, but it still retains that elegant Range Rover shape. Just the right mix if you ask us.

    The interior doesn’t disappoint either, what with its good spread of colours and materials. We like the front seats, which appear to be the same wing-backed buckets you find in an F-type, and the rear seats are even individually shaped to mimic the ones at the front. There is some carbon-fibre trim on the dash and the dials are all digital, like in the full-size Range Rover, but that aside, it’s no different from the run-of-the-mill Range Rover Sport. We would have liked a bit more unique trim and definitely a sportier steering wheel.

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