Driving position and dashboard
There’s buckets of steering wheel adjustment, but entry-level models make do with eight-way manual seats without lumbar support adjustment. Thankfully, S and SE trims add 14-way electrically adjustable seats, including adjustable lumbar support. These are very comfortable, even after a few hours in the saddle. Top spec Velars come with 20-way electrically adjustable seats that move every which way and will even heat, cool and massage you.
The settings for the climate control and various off-road driving modes are accessed through a low-level touchscreen, and switching between functions requires you to take your eyes off the road. Fortunately, a pair of physical rotary controllers, which are easier to operate, augments the system. These change functions depending on which menu you’re in. SE versions and upwards come with a 12.3in digital instrument cluster instead of analogue dials. This is clear to see and places lots of information just in front of the driver, but it’s operated via a slightly confusing menu set-up.
Visibility, parking sensors and cameras
Thanks to a lofty driving position, the driver's view straight out of the front and to the sides are good, but the thick windscreen pillars can obscure your vision slightly at junctions. Seeing out the back isn’t that easy, either, due to the small rear screen and thick rear pillars.
At least all Velars come with front and rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera. It’s possible to upgrade the latter to a 360deg camera and, for those who are really worried about parking, SE trim adds a park-assist system that will locate a space and steer you into it for you. It’s an option on lower trim levels.
S models get LED headlights, while SE and above come with adaptive LED matrix headlights.
Sat nav and infotainment
All Velars get a pair of 10.0in touchscreens; one where you’d expect it to be, in the middle of the dashboard, and the other below it, just in front of the gear selector. This second screen is the one that you use to access the air conditioning and off-road modes, but you can also operate the multimedia system through it while the main screen continues to display a navigation-route map.
Both screens are sharp with smart-looking graphics and the menus prove easy enough to navigate, once you're used to them. Some of the icons are a bit small, though, and the system doesn’t always respond as quickly to prompts as some rivals’ infotainment systems; the BMW X4 and X6 have the easiest system to use, thanks to their more intuitive rotary dial selector that’s less distracting to operate while driving than a touchscreen.
If you wish, you can bypass the Land Rover software with the standard-fit Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity. These let you use Google Maps or Waze navigation apps instead of the in-built sat-nav. Rear seat passengers are catered for with a pair of USB sockets, hidden behind the front centre armrest, and a rear-seat entertainment system with twin 8.0in screens is available as an option. S trim upgrades the stereo to 10 speakers and 380 watts of power, but from SE you get 16 speakers and 825 watts.
Although there are some scratchy plastics on the bottom of the doors, around the door openings and on the rear of the front seats, the main areas that you look at and interact with look pretty plush. This a class that features high-end models like the Bentley Bentayga, though, and the Velar is far from that level.
The high-spec models have plenty of soft leather on the seats, the top of the dashboard, the steering wheel and the tops of the doors. Even the more basic trims fitted with cloth seat trim look and feel snazzy and inviting. Everything feels sturdy, too, although we'd say the BMW X4 and X6 and the Audi Q8 offer consistently plusher materials throughout.