With the 2020 Evoque, Land Rover revamps the best-selling vehicle that wears the Range Rover badge. Better in almost every way, the 2020 Evoque’s shaped more softly, rolls down the road more quietly, and navigates on and off-road more confidently, sometimes through a see-through set of camera-fied goggles.
It’s a 6.4 out of 10 to us, with no safety data to report. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
We likened the first Range Rover Evoque’s pretty, stylish shape to a stiletto heel. This time, it’s more of a chunky low heel. The sheet metal sides have grown taller, the glass slimmer, the wheels bigger; it’s more a tactical weekend shoe than a slinky Louboutin, though LED highlights telegraph some strong graphic details. The cabin’s far richer than before, with available woven-cloth seats and stitched-leather dash. It’s awash in digital displays just large enough to encourage an informed society, not drown the driver out with too much information.
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Land Rover taps a new turbo-4 engine for all Evoques. The base 246-horsepower version of the 2.0-liter turbo-4 hits 60 mph in 7.0 seconds and a 143-mph top speed, according to Land Rover, and it does it in considerably more hushed tones than the grouchy engine in last year’s model. A new 9-speed automatic handles shifts better, too, and the new all-wheel-drive system can disconnect its rear axle to conserve fuel.
Turn up the same engine’s turbo wick and the 2020 Evoque presses out 296 hp, drops 0-60 mph times to 6.3 seconds, reaches 150 mph, and earns a more sporting suspension with adaptive dampers and adjustable steering weight. The high-output engine also gets a 48-volt mild-hybrid system that can run accessories, smooth the stop/start function, and let the car “sail” under no engine power at speeds below 11 mph; oddly, the mild-hybrid earns the same 23 mpg combined as the non-mild-hybrid Evoque.
The standard strut and multi-link rear suspension doles out more comfortable ride motions than the stiff-kneed first-generation Evoque, and adaptive dampers might aid its ride even more—a good thing, given a range of wheels and tires that start at 18-inchers and finish at massive 21-inchers. The steering’s light and without much feel, but pointing and squirting is easy.
Passenger space hasn’t improved much, and neither has the Evoque’s footprint. The front seats would be great for slimmer builds, but bigger passengers might ride atop its narrowly bolstered bottom cushions. The back bench can tote two larger adults, but head room slights the talls again, and knee room is slim. The 2020 Evoque has 21.5 cubic feet of space behind the second row, fine for a couple of roll-aboards.
No crash-test data exists, but every Evoque now has automatic emergency braking. Spendy models get a rear camera mirror—and some sport a camera view that “disappears” the car’s front end, and shows road obstacles on the car’s central display.
All 2020 Evoque crossover SUVs now have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, a 10.0-inch touchscreen, and LED headlights. The R-Dynamic models spool up more turbo power and can be fitted with adaptive dampers to go with their mild-hybrid drivetrain. Spec up a base $43,645 Evoque into R-Dynamic HSE trim with a sliding panoramic roof, Kvadrat wool seats, touchscreen climate controls and 21-inch wheels, and the Evoque slides into the garage wearing nearly $55,000 worth of bling. Fashion has its price—and we’re sure the Evoque’s tag won’t stop there.