2012 Range Rover Evoque 2WD review

* New Range Rover Evoque 2WD: first UK review * 57.6mpg; 129g/km (coupe) * On-sale now, priced from 27,955...

2012 Range Rover Evoque 2WD review

The Range Rover Evoque is the marques smallest and most affordable model, and is now available in both four- and two-wheel drive.

Two-wheel-drive versions are available with one engine: the 2.2-litre eD4 diesel, which is matched to a six-speed manual gearbox. Producing 148bhp, this engine can get the Evoque from 0-60mph in 10.6 seconds and has a top speed of 112mph.

However, because the 2WD Evoque is lighter than the 4WD cars, it has better fuel economy and lower emissions: the three-door Coupe averages 57.6mpg and emits 129g/km of CO2, whereas the equivalent 148bhp 4WD 2.2 TD4 diesel averages 49.6mpg and emits 149g/km.

The 2WD eD4 is also the cheapest Evoque, at 27,955 for the 5dr and 28,950 for the 3dr Coupe. Pure and Prestige trims are available.

Whats the 2012 Range Rover Evoque 2WD like to drive?
The suspension for the 2WD Evoque is slightly different from the 4WD models'; its been set up with a bias towards on-road driving, rather than a mix of on- and off-road action.

However, the ride hasnt been improved. Its far from uncomfortable, but the car no longer wafts along like others in the range. It jiggles occupants more than youd expect in a luxury SUV.

The 148bhp 2.2 diesel engine, which is strong in low-to-mid rev range, will suit most peoples needs perfectly well. Its relatively quiet at speed, too, but is a bit more grumbly than the other diesels available in the Evoque.

Gearshifts with the six-speed manual gearbox are slick and precise, though.

Whats 2012 Range Rover Evoque 2WD like inside?
Previous Range Rovers have never disappointed with their cabins, and the Evoque is no different: everything looks and feels as plush as the more expensive Range Rover.

Entry-level Pure models are well equipped, and come with alloys, climate and cruise controls, heated leather seats, Bluetooth and DAB radio as standard.

Theres room for four adults in both the three- and five-door versions, although getting into the back of the Coupe could be tricky for some. Rear headroom is also a bit tighter in the three-door model.

Should I buy one?
If you want an Evoque but cost is more important than dynamics, the 2WD models make sense. Theyre cheaper by around 750 and, because fuel economy is a fairly decent 57.6mpg for the Coupe, running costs wont be ridiculous.

It makes sense as a company car, too: CO2 emissions of 129g/km for the Coupe mean you pay 19%. The five-door, with emissions of 133g/km, is in the 20% category. Compare that with the 4WD 2.2 TD4 diesel: with emissions of 149g/km, it sits in the 23% bracket.

However, the 2WD Evoque isnt the best version in the range to drive: the ride is just that bit too jiggly and the engine is a little too rumbly. Wed still go for the 2.2 SD4 190 Pure 4WD.

Audi Q3

What Car? says

Rosie McMahon