Bottom line: Again, luxury-vehicle manufacturers such as Land Rover need to rethink their optional-equipment packages. For example, there should be no such thing as a Land Rover, a vehicle whose very name speaks to far-flung adventure, with optional onboard navigation. That feature should be standard.
Ride, acceleration and handling: Ride is good on-road and in the rough. On-road handling may be too trucklike and imprecise for some drivers. Highway acceleration is very good.
Head-turning quotient: High, mighty and rich.
Body style, layout: The 2011 Land Rover LR4, which underwent a major makeover in 2010, when it was being marketed as the LR3, is a compact, front-engine, four-wheel drive, luxury sport-utility vehicle with four side doors and a rear liftgate.
Engine/transmission: The LR4 comes standard with a 5-liter, double-overhead-cam, 32-valve V-8 with variable valve lift and timing (375 horsepower, 375 foot-pounds of torque). The engine is attached to a six-speed transmission that can be operated automatically or manually.
Capacities: Seats for five people. A third-row seat for two more passengers is optional and not recommended by this column (too close to rear liftgate). Cargo capacity ranges from 42.1 cubic feet to 90.3 cubic feet depending on the number of seats installed and whether the second-row and third-row seats are folded. The weight of what can be carried onboard is 1,325 pounds. The LR4 can be equipped to tow a trailer weighing 7,716 pounds. The fuel tank holds 22.8 gallons of gasoline. Premium is required.
Mileage: Real-world mileage averaged 10 miles per gallon in the city and 16 on the highway.
Safety: Standard equipment includes front and rear ventilated disc brakes with anti-lock protection, electronic brake assistance for better control of hill ascent and descent, electronic stability and traction control, driver head-restraint whiplash-protection system, and side and head air bags.
Price: The base price for the 2011 Land Rover LR4 is $47,650. Dealer’s invoice price on that model is $43,362. Price as tested is $51,250, including $2,750 in options (premium sound system, heated steering wheel and front and middle seats, black-lacquer interior trim) and an $850 destination fee. Dealer’s price as tested is $46,715.
Must mention: At the 2011 New York Auto Show, underway here through May 1, Land Rover introduced its new city-friendly, city-sharp Evoque Si4. It’s worth a look. Also, check out the new Jeep Grand Cherokee for an interesting comparison with the LR4.