Details were few when the 2012 Range Rover Evoque was first unveiled at a gala event in London last July. However, its official public debut in Paris is accompanied by a good deal more specific information on the smallest, lightest and most fuel-efficient vehicle ever to grace the Range Rover portfolio. Based on the Land Rover LRX Concept, this flashy coupe-like SUV crossover embodies an innovative extension of the marque's sense of style and personality. To be offered in Pure, luxurious Prestige and more-sporty Dynamic trim levels, Land Rover's Managing Director Phil Popham believes the Evoque "will appeal to a new group of customers who may not have considered a Range Rover before."
Inside, the 2012 Range Rover Evoque's elegantly appointed cabin will provide the same kind of luxury and innovation found in its larger kin, highlighted by leather upholstery and an intuitive control system with a large 8.0-inch touch-screen display. Audiophiles should delight in Range Rover's partnership with renowned sound specialists Meridian that allow the Evoque's impressive standard audio packages to be upgraded with a custom 825-watt/17-speaker surround-sound system -- the first Meridian-designed setup in any Range Rover. Other options of note include a hard-drive based navigation system, 360-degree view Surround Camera System, full panoramic glass rood and a rear-seat entertainment package with twin 8.0-inch screens.
Despite its smaller scale, the 2012 Range Rover Evoque rolls onto the scene with an impressive measure of go-almost-anywhere capability. Although International versions will offer several engine/transmissions combinations as well as front/all-wheel drive choices, in the U.S. the Evoque will arrive only with the latter configuration and be powered by a Range Rover-optimized version of Ford's 2.0-liter turbocharged Ecotec inline-four that makes 240 horses paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. Factor in its generous ground clearance, aggressive approach/departure angles and the latest iteration of Range Rover's multi-mode Terrain Response system, and the Evoque promised to deport itself quite well, regardless of weather or surface conditions.
The 2012 Range Rover Evoque will be sold in 160 countries starting next year. Pricing will start around $45,000 for the first of the U.S. variants, set to arrive here in late 2011. Range Rover has previously confirmed that a five-door version of the Evoque will be produced, but like the front-drive model, there's still no word as to whether that variant will be headed to America.