Is the 2.0-litre petrol motor punchy enough to overcome the 2 tonne weight of the Range Rover Sport?
Over the last few years, Jaguar Land Rover seems to have shifted their focus on petrol offerings. Since the global unveiling of the Ingenium petrol motor in September 2016, the company has introduced petrol variants of the XE, XF, F-Pace, Discovery Sport, and more. The latest car to be plonked with a 2.0-litre Ingenium motor is the Range Rover Sport. This one here comes in the same state of tune as the F-Type 2.0, but is considerably heavier. Is this motor the right fit for a luxury SUV or has JLR gone a step too far with downsizing? Let’s find out.
Jaguar Land Rover has always offered a full buffet of engine options for the Range Rover Sport. While the 5.0-litre V8 supercharged petrol sits at the top in the SVR, until recently, the 3.0-litre V6 diesel was the base trim. Somewhere in the middle, are the 3.0-litre V6 petrol and the 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 diesel options as well. The addition of the 2.0-litre Ingenium petrol makes it the most affordable Range Rover Sport on sale and thereby puts it at the bottom of the variant range. Don’t just shrug off this one simply because it is the base variant – there’s more to it than meet the eye.
Although on paper, the engine specifications of this Range Rover Sport may not seem very exciting, especially when you consider the weight it has to lug. Drive it and that perception changes altogether. This little motor makes its peak 400Nm of torque right from 1,500rpm and the manner in which it pulls from there on really takes you by surprise. The torque spread is wide, going right up till 4,000rpm. And since the engine is rather free revving, it doesn’t throw a fit when you push it beyond that either. In fact, the motor feels meaty right up till 6,000rpm. In terms of outright performance, it won’t knock your socks off, but it will surely get your eyebrows raised. That being said, you will sometimes find the need to go hard on the pedal when you need the power to kick in a bit more urgently. This has more to do with a slight reluctance from the 8-speed automatic transmission before shifting down. In terms of refinement, the Range Rover Sport gives no reason to complain. The engine is quiet and the cabin is well insulated from the noise outside too.
Ride and Handling:
The firm suspension setup and the well-weighted steering ensure that the Range Rover Sport feels confident in some measure around a series of bends. The all-wheel drive system provides good grip further adding to the overall drive experience but through it all, the sheer size and bulk of the SUV simply doesn’t go unnoticed. The overall ride quality of the car is quite impressive though. fitted with 20-inch wheels, this Range Rover Sport felt a lot supple over in comparison to the one that we’ve tested previously. That being said, the Range Rover Sport tends to toss you around in the cabin while driving slow over bad roads.
On the inside, the Range Rover Sport has a very well-appointed cabin. Although the RR Sport P300 sits at the bottom of the variant list, it still has the InControl Touch Pro Duo – which in common parlance are the two screens on the centre console – one for the infotainment system and another for the climate control and driving modes. While the display is crisp, the response to touch isn’t as sensitive as some of the other cars in the price range.
Although the car has traditional knobs to regulate the temperature, you can only adjust the fan speed using the touchscreen and it requires you to take your eyes away from the road. And then there is a third screen for the instrument cluster. It is extremely informative and I just love how you can change the display as per your preference – you a single or a two-dial setup, navigation or even the media information. You can make these changes using the touchpads on the steering wheel. Frankly, I would have preferred traditional buttons but there’s no denying that these make the car look and feel chic.
Prices for the 2.0-litre petrol-powered Range Rover Sport start at Rs 86.71 lakh, this mid-sped SE trim carries a sticker price of Rs 94.49 lakh. Although the Range Rover Sport 2.0 sits at the bottom of the range, it does get good enough equipment to justify the price tag, especially when you take into consideration the more powerful V6 motors on offer. But the bigger highlight for us, however, is that it is as fast and performs as well as the 4.4-litre V8 diesel, and while at it, saves you a decent sum too.
- Range Rover Sport Petrol
Engine: 1,997cc / 4-Cylinders / 16-Valves / Turbocharged
Power: 296bhp @ 5,500rpm
Torque: 400Nm @ 1,500 – 4,000rpm
Transmission: 8-Speed AT / All-Wheel Drive
Price: ₹ 94.49 lakh (Ex-showroom)