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2012 Land Rover Range Rover

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2012 Land Rover Range Rover Review

KBB Editors' Overview

By KBB.com Editors - Updated Date: 5/23/2012


Delivering a gratifying combination of off-road capability and on-road comfort, the 2012 Land Rover Range Rover expands its go-anywhere, do-everything mantra with a host of refinements. Considering the Land Rover brand is an international icon for luxury SUVs, it's no surprise the flagship Range Rover offers the most desirable creature comforts along with the latest high-tech gadgets. While it currently faces formidable challengers in the category it created over four decades ago, Land Rover's renowned social status and legendary off-road reputation place the 2012 Range Rover in a class of its own.

You'll Like This Car If...

You may find the 2012 Range Rover a suitable vehicle if you fancy a full-size luxury SUV with prestige, exemplary off-road ability and an unmistakable design that is likely to turn some heads.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you are searching for a luxury vehicle with a track record for high quality, Land Rover's long-standing reputation of questionable reliability might seem off-putting. Additionally, if you want impressive off-road performance and require an 8-passenger seating arrangement, the Lexus LX 570 might be the better choice.

What's New for 2012

The Land Rover Range Rover benefits from a modest styling upgrade for 2012. Highlights include color-keyed side vent surrounds and door handles, gloss black headlight and taillight housings, and new 20-inch V spoke alloy wheels.

Driving It Driving Impressions

Though not many people are going to take an $80,000 vehicle for a romp in the mud, it's nice to know that, if you must diverge from the civilized road, the 2012 Land Rover Range Rover is equipped with one of the finest off-road systems ever designed. Its permanent 4-wheel-drive system and complex array of electronic monitoring devices permit the Range Rover to ascend hills that might have a mountain goat thinking twice. The air-spring suspension allows you to choose the ride height of the vehicle, raising it higher when more ground clearance is required and lowering it when conditions allow a lower center of gravity. For a big SUV, the Range Rover handles itself surprisingly well, devoid of that top-heavy feel you sometimes experience in softly-sprung SUVs.

Favorite Features

Terrain Response
Since conquering varying types of terrain demands varying sets of vehicle dynamics, the Range Rover comes equipped with Terrain Response. Once the driver selects the type of terrain he – or God bless her, she – wishes to traverse, the system automatically alters the engine, transmission, suspension, and traction-control settings for enhanced drivability.

Electronic Air Suspension
The 2012 Range Rover utilizes an Electronic Air Suspension system to help compensate for uneven vehicle loads and inconsistent road quality. The suspension dampers adjust nearly 100 times per second for a smooth, balanced ride regardless of the driving conditions.

Vehicle Details Interior

Inside, the Range Rover SUV's unique character is expressed with an abundance of premium soft-touch materials in a rugged, yet modern, design. The 2012 Range Rover's profusion of features creates enough buttons and switches to make an airline pilot feel right at home. The cabin's centerpiece is undoubtedly the digital instrument cluster with its brilliant 12.3-inch LCD screen and fully customizable information displays. The 5-passenger cabin provides a capacious ambiance for its occupants in addition to a sufficiently roomy cargo area. Those who seek a touch of personalization in their next vehicle will appreciate the Range Rover's bespoke interior and its array of color schemes, textures and trims.

Exterior

While original Land Rover DNA remains evident in the overall shape, the 2012 Range Rover builds upon its generational domestication with smoothly contoured edges, LED running lights, and massive 20-inch wheels. Supercharged Range Rover trims flaunt a sporty mesh grille, unique 10-spoke wheels and fender vents. While you are more likely to spot a current Land Rover smothered in tire shine and finishing glaze rather than mud and sand, the Range Rover maintains its off-road roots with over 11 inches of ground clearance and exceptional water fording capability.

Notable Standard Equipment

The base 2012 Ranger Rover HSE features full-time 4-wheel drive, xenon headlights, Hill Descent Control for those unnerving downhill adventures, dual heated auto-dimming mirrors and a rear backup camera. Your comfort is covered by 3-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, steering wheel and windshield-wiper fluid, and a memory feature for the driver's seat, outside mirrors and steering wheel. Multimedia is comprised of a hard-drive-based navigation system, 720-watt 14-speaker harman/kardon LOGIC7 audio system. Safety comes in the form of seven airbags and whiplash-reducing front seats.

Notable Optional Equipment

Options for the 2012 Range Rover include a sporty Supercharged trim with a potent 510-horsepower V8 engine, cooled seats, 14-way power driver and front passenger seats, a surround camera system offering a near 360 degree view around the vehicle, a blind-spot monitoring system, an automatic high beam feature, adaptive headlamps for increased visibility around corners, and a rear-seat DVD entertainment system. The range-topping Autobiography trim option adds Diamond Turn 20-inch wheels, semi-aniline leather seating surfaces, veneer wood trim, 4-zone climate control and unique exterior body components.

Under the Hood

The standard 375-horsepower 5.0-liter V8 engine of the Range Rover HSE provides ample horsepower and torque, but don't expect to see fuel economy figures breaking the 20-mpg mark. The supercharged 5.0-liter engine delivers superior off-the-line acceleration as well as passing power without a drop in fuel efficiency, but the additional $15,000-asking price is steep. Both engines are matched to a 6-speed automatic transmission with a sequential shift mode and CommandShift, a piece of technology designed to alter shift points according to road conditions and driving style.

Range Rover HSE
5.0-liter V8
375 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
375 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/18 mpg

Range Rover Supercharged
5.0-liter supercharged V8
510 horsepower @ 6,000-6,500 rpm
461 lb-ft of torque @ 2,500-5,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/18 mpg

Pricing Notes

The 2012 Land Rover Range Rover starts at a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) just over $80,000 and tops out north of $140K in full Supercharged/Autobiography trim. The Range Rover shares a comparable starting price with the 8-passenger Toyota Land Cruiser and Lexus LX 570, while the Mercedes-Benz G550 carries a hefty $108K sticker price. Be sure to check KBB's Fair Purchase Price in the "What should I pay for my new car?" section on our homepage to see what consumers are typically paying for their Range Rovers in your area. As for resale value, we expect the 2012 Land Rover Range Rover will see the weakest 5-year residual value in the segment.

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