From £83,550
It may look similar, but this new Range Rover is a huge step forward

What is it?

It’s the new Range Rover, revised for 2011 with a modified, more powerful, more efficient turbodiesel engine. The world’s most admired luxury off-roader, the Range Rover, has just celebrated its 40th birthday and everyone agrees it is still at the height of its powers, except for one thing. It is large and heavy and has a reputation for thirst.

Land Rover has completely rethought the former 3.6-litre V8 diesel, which is now bored and stroked to 4.4 litres, and fitted it with a similar sequential twin turbocharger induction system to the one in the diesel Discovery's 3.0 litre V6. This allows it more power (308 bhp at 4000 rpm) and torque (516lb ft at 1500-3000 rpm) and obviously it now meets the new Euro5 emissions standards.

Combined with a new ZF eight-speed automatic gearbox, carefully matched to the RR's unique weight and character, the new powertrain offers a 20 percent improvement in fuel consumption and cuts CO2 by 15 percent, removing the diesel Range Rover from the top road tax band. The Range Rover upgrade also brings paddle-shifts and a Jaguar-style rotary gear selector for the first time.

The 2011 Range Rover gets minor upgrades to the exterior, but substantial upgrades to the rear compartment to cater for the fact that owners in emerging markets (China, India, Russia) are frequently chauffeured. The diesel also adopts the supercharged RR's Brembo brakes - and needs them.

See test pics of the new Range Rover TDV8 2011

What’s it like?

On or off road, it's magnificent. The driving position is still by far the best in the business, being both long-distance comfortable and commanding at the same time. Visibility, even in tight going, is terrific. The '10 model already set the class standards for steering response, ride comfort, quietness and off-road ability.

This new edition adds effortless open-road ability: despite the mass there is always plenty of torque plus exactly the right gear ratio (imperceptibly selected) to accelerate you strongly from about 60-70 mph where the old model's thrust began to tail off.

The paddle-shift, though hardly needed, adds an interesting dimension to your driving pleasure. Best of all, the gearbox has none of the tendency to 'hunt' discontentedly between ratios like other seven and eight-speeders available.

Should I buy one?

The new Range Rover, though little different to look at, is a mighty step forward. Not only do buyers get more power delivered with less apparent effort, they get much better fuel consumption and can buy with good conscience. It's a virtuous circle.

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Join the debate

Add a comment…
Dave Ryan 10 July 2010

Re: Range Rover TDV8 2011

I'm still waiting for a good justification for the car gaining in excess of 200kgs over the last model update. It seems particularly ironic considering they're planning to build the 2012 version with a kerb weight in the region of 2150kgs ( - maybe they're just using this model to go out with a bang or something?

All I can say is with that kerb weight and performance with that much power, I wouldn't buy one. If I want a mudplugger I'll get something like a Defender or a 4wd pickup.

Los Angeles 10 July 2010

Re: Range Rover TDV8 2011

As I left the LA LR dealership happy as a sandboy (whatever that is) in my shiny black LR Disco I notice a very grumpy man sitting in his black Disco parked by the roadside. It was exactly the same model and colour as mine. But there was something distinctly odd about the scene. He wasn't sitting in the Disco but rather on it. He was sitting on top holding up a yellow lemon in each hand. On the side of his Disco he had painted these words in crude yellow brush work:

"Don't buy this car - it's a lemon!"

I never really recovered from seeing that image.

PS: My Disco never broke down but everything else that could go wrong - did. I traded it for a Subaru Outback..

uk_supercar_fan 9 July 2010

Re: Range Rover TDV8 2011

Straight Six Man wrote:
Give the Defender chassis a bit of a tweak to make it more comfortable

hmm I think it might need more than "a bit of a tweak" .....

Straight Six Man wrote:
using the Defender chassis to build a smaller sister to the Discovery

I think you'll find that they're doing the opposite - using the Discovery chassis to build the next Defender..