We love the Range Rover Sport. Sleek, powerful, luxurious – it’s got it all. Imagine our excitement, then, at the prospect of the Range Rover Sport SVR – billed as, wait for it, the ‘fastest and most powerful Land Rover ever’. Although it has a lot to live up for, its pedigree couldn’t be better. This is the first car to come from the new Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations division, which will be bringing out the most powerful, best performing cars in the range under the SVR label.
So how does their first offering stack up? The Range Rover Sport SVR has an engine stolen from the Jaguar F-type V8 R: a 5-litre supercharged V8, which has an extra 40BHP and 41 lb ft of torque on the standard model, bringing it up to a total of 542bhp and 502lb ft from 2500rpm. The powerhouse is coupled to an eight-speed ZF automatic, which drives power to all four wheels. Now on to the fun part: this car will go from 0-60MPH in just 4.5 seconds, and reach a top speed of 162MPH. If you can get your mind round that, then try this: the Sport SVR has a Nurbugring lap time of just 8 minutes 14 seconds, making it one of the fastest SUVs of all time. Wow. (If you’re interested, the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S holds the record, with a lap time of 7 minutes 59 seconds – just 15 seconds faster than this SVR!)
To optimise performance, the Special Vehicle Operations team have stiffened the suspension by about 10 %, and lowered the car by 8mm. A torque vectoring by braking has been added to increase the car’s agility, while the brakes themselves receive five times more cooling air thanks for a special carbon fibre duct. The marque’s famous Dynamic Stability Control has been specially tuned for this set-up, with impressive results for handling and performance.
The steering system has also been given a sportier weighting, while the SVR can be shod in either 21 or 22 inch wheels. First drive reports suggest that it responds very well to positive driving inputs and can corner exceptionally well for such a large vehicle.
It’s also quickly gaining a reputation for its breathtaking acceleration, responsive gearbox and throaty exhaust – qualities you’d expect on a sports car rather than an SUV! Nevertheless, the Range Rover Sport SVR still promises to provide an unrivalled off-road capability, making it perhaps the perfect all-round vehicle.
In design terms it’s been given a new front bumper with larger air intakes, flared wheel arches, a rear spoiler and a rear bumper that comes with an integrated diffuser and quad exhaust pipes. Inside, four different colour schemes are available, alongside new sports seats – that are still immensely luxurious – as well as a variety of trim options.
All in all, it sounds like the new Range Rover Sport SVR may not only be the best-performing car of the series, but also the most sought after. We can’t wait to take a closer look!