There aren’t many ways to improve a Range Rover other than to address its most glaring weakness – fuel economy. And that’s exactly what Land Rover has done by way of new Range Rover Hybrid and Range Rover Sport Hybrid models.
Both vehicles will use the company’s 3.0-litre diesel SDV6 engine with an electric motor bolted on for good measure. Together they conspire to return an impressive average fuel economy of 44.1mpg with CO2 emissions of 169g/km – that’s better than the Range Rover Evoque 2.0 Si4, which returns 32.5mpg and 199g/km.
The Range Rover Hybrid and Range Rover Sport Hybrid aren’t just designed to save trees – they can pull them down, too. The 254bhp 3.0-litre SDV6 diesel and 35kW electric motor produce a healthy 335bhp in total. This is sufficient for 0-62mph times of 6.9 seconds and 6.7 seconds in the Range Rover Hybrid and the Range Rover Sport Hybrid, respectively.
The standard Hybrid can hit 135mph, versus the Sport Hybrid’s 140mph maximum.
Hooning is entirely optional, of course. You’ll get the most out of the new cars if you’re gentle on the throttle. Both can travel for up to a mile and at up to speeds of 30mph on electric power alone when operating in electric vehicle mode.
Unlike many hybrid vehicles, Land Rover says there is no loss of luggage space as a result of it installing the electric motor and extra batteries – boot space remains at 784 litres.
Land Rover will begin taking orders for the Range Rover Hybrid and Range Rover Sport Hybrid from September 10th, with deliveries beginning in January 2013.
Check out our full video review of the Range Rover Sport below.