Hot on the heels of her Kona sprint review, our lady journo gives you her impressions of this luxurious Land Rover product.
Velar is big on style. Do you agree?
The Velar certainly has street cred and it is eye-catching in the looks department. Internal styling is chic and luxurious but I found elements of the Evoque (that squashed rear end) in the exterior styling which detracted from the Velar’s originality. In keeping with the current trend for bold, massive, blunt-nosed bonnets and grilles, the Velar can hold its own.
I found the two touchscreens a bit of overkill and in fact, it took quite a bit of fiddling to decide how they worked together. It has sleek bits, like the flush door handles which are a smart touch and provided much entertainment to the bemusement of any passengers who attempted to get in without knowing how.
So is it all face and no character?
I wouldn’t say so, no. It has its own appeal as a mid-size luxurious SUV. It’s not to my taste and a tad OTT for my liking but I can see how many people would love it. In fact, a number of people came up to me (especially Porsche Cayenne driving mommies) wanting to know all about it as a consideration for their next car. So it has a definite following in the competitive world of SUV driving mothers doing the school run.
What’s it like to drive?
I found it frustrating to drive. It’s big, with a myriad of blind spots. I dislike having to rely on technology to manoeuvre and park a vehicle as I did in this instance. I’m tall but I struggled to see over the bonnet and I found visibility behind the driver to be poor blind-spot wise. Having said that, the car is comfortable, holds the road beautifully and cruises comfortably through all eight gears.
I naturally took it on some gravel roads to the stables to get the opinions of the horsey crowd (approval on the looks department at any rate) but didn’t extend the test to a towing one, so I can’t vouch for its towing capacity or comfort.
Should (would) you take it off-road?
Absolutely NOT! The thought of taking this much tech and electronics out into the wilderness is the stuff of nightmares. Imagine the door handles no longer popped out after experiencing the dust and gravel of Namibia’s C-roads? I wouldn’t risk it, and not least because of the fancy paint job.
I was comfortable keeping the car to suburban gravel and dirt roads and muddy puddles but that was about the extent of what I would use it for. Perhaps the Velar would make a great car for the school run if you lived peri-urbanely and were close to workshops and flat-bed towing services in case anything went wrong.
Yours for R1.37m – worth it?
I wouldn’t buy it myself – I prefer something that I can trust to be more robust rather than just beautifully made but for the Porsche Cayenne driving mommies out there, I can see the appeal in being just a little bit different…
- Engine: 3L V6 turbo-diesel
- Transmission: 8-speed Auto, i-AWD
- Max. Power: 221kW
- Max. Torque: 700Nm
- Avg cons.: (claimed 6.4L/100km)
- 0-100km/h: 6.95 seconds (claimed 6.5)
- Top Speed: (claimed 241km/h)
- List Price: R1,336,646.00
0-10km/h: 0,34 seconds
0-20km/h: 0,81 seconds
0-30km/h: 1,31 seconds
0-40km/h: 2,01 seconds
0-50km/h: 2,62 seconds
0-60km/h: 3,36 seconds
0-70km/h: 4,12 seconds
0-80km/h: 4,95 seconds
0-90km/h: 5,93 seconds
0-100km/h: 6,95 seconds
0-110km/h: 8,19 seconds
0-120km/h: 9,58 seconds
0-130km/h: 11,01 seconds
0-140km/h: 12,57 seconds
0-150km/h: 14,70 seconds
0-160km/h: 16,85 seconds
0-170km/h: 19,25 seconds
0-100m: 6,47 seconds @ 95,37km/h
0-200m: 9,76 seconds @ 121,31km/h
0-300m: 12,57 seconds @ 139,49km/h
0-400m: 15,05 seconds @ 151,27km/h
0-10mph: 0,62 seconds
0-20mph: 1,44 seconds
0-30mph: 2,52 seconds
0-40mph: 3,69 seconds
0-50mph: 4,99 seconds
0-60mph: 6,60 seconds
0-70mph: 8,56 seconds
0-80mph: 10,82 seconds
0-90mph: 13,66 seconds
0-100mph: 17,06 seconds
1/4 mile: 15,05 seconds @ 94,21 mph
100-0km/h: 3,12 seconds @ 41,38 metres (once-off)
Maximum deceleration G-force: 1.22G
Maximum acceleration G-force: 0.63G
All data captured by Racelogic® Performance Box