No hybrid variant planned for new Range Rover Evoque

Article by Christian Andrei, on December 13, 2010

Hybrid technology will not be used on the new Range Rover Evoque compact SUV. Interestingly, its LRX concept car predecessor was equipped with electrically driven rear wheels as part of an environmentally-friendly four-wheel drive system.

Land Rover’s global brand director John Edwards told AutoExpress that instead, future generations of the Land Rover Discovery and the Range Rover will have hybrid powertrains.

The front-wheel-drive, 2.2 liter diesel versions of the baby SUV that will start selling in the summer of 2011 could boast an emission rating under 130g/km CO2 and fuel economy of 50 mpg – comparable to the levels that the LRX hybrid was aiming for.

Edwards asserted that the approach to Evoque is “more viable” for the company and customers since hybrid technology on a small car would raise the price and make it heavier. Edwards claims that this technology is more appropriate for larger cars, “probably from Discovery upwards.” He added that the company has considerably reduced the weight on Evoque.

To be priced between GBP 30,000 and GBP 45,000, the Evoque will be offered in three- and five-door body styles. Due to Range Rover's 4x4 legacy and the skill of its sales staff, front-wheel-drive versions sales will make up less than 20% of total sales.

This figure is significantly lower than most competing SUVs or crossovers, with new customers expecting to comprise 70 to 80% of buyers. With regards to the likelihood of putting the Jaguar CX-75 into production, Dr Ralf Speth, CEO of Jaguar-Land Rover, said he doesn’t want to make promises he can’t keep.

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