Land Rover claims its revised Freelander, revealed today at the Moscow motor show, will offer lower emissions when it goes on sale next month — and the eco push will extend to the first ever two-wheel-drive version.
The company also say it will offer better interiors, greater refinement and stronger performance.
A revised version of the PSA-sourced 2.2-litre turbodiesel engine is at the heart of the revised line-up. It’s now available in two states of tune — 148bhp and 187bhp — and both specs have 15lb ft more torque than the outgoing 158bhp motor. The changes to the 2.2, including a variable-vane turbocharger and a reprogrammed ECU, help it to meet Euro5 emissions rules.
The 148bhp TD4 comes with a manual gearbox as standard; the more powerful model, badged SD4, is available only with an automatic ’box. Land Rover claims the entry-level unit matches the outgoing engine’s performance, while offering lower CO2 emissions (165g/km instead of 179g/km).
The SD4 emits 185g/km but accelerates from 0-60mph in 8.7sec — almost two seconds quicker than the old car — and reaches a top speed of 118mph, an increase of 6mph.
The biggest news is the arrival of a front-drive Freelander next January. Badged eD4, it is available only with a six-speed manual ’box and the 148bhp diesel engine. The reduction in weight from losing 4WD, and the addition of automatic stop-start, help the eD4 to deliver 47.2mpg and 158g/km of CO2.
Land Rover MD Phil Popham said, “The European market for two-wheel-drive SUVs represents 23 per cent of the segment, and we intend to compete strongly. A two-wheel-drive option is just one way in which we are developing our vehicles’ efficiency while adding to the Land Rover range.”
Styling tweaks include a new front bumper with revised foglights, a new grille, different headlights and tail-lights, a full-width tailgate appliqué and fresh designs of 18in and 19in alloy wheels.
The interior features revised instrument dials, four new styles of seat upholstery and the option of a Premium Pack that includes Windsor leather upholstery, covered centre stowage and greater adjustability in the seats.
The TD4 range starts at £21,695 for S trim, rising to £32,995 for the HSE (automatic transmissions cost £1515 extra on all TD4s). The more powerful SD4s start at £27,510 for the GS, rising to £35,510 for HSE. Prices for the eD4 will be announced later in the year.