Tested: 2016 Land Rover Range Rover

The days of requiring a V8 engine to lug your typical luxury SUV are waning. So says Land Rover, at any rate. The company now offers its ever-graceful Range Rover with a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine as the base powerplant. The British brand was good enough to loan us just such a vehicle for a test, and we found that, in the main, the 340-horsepower six doesn’t do anything to sully a magnificent driving experience.

Pros:

  • The supercharged V6 is remarkably good. We have been firm fans of the 5.0-liter V8 that Land Rover used in so many applications, for so many years, but this smaller mill gives up nothing in terms of performance. The engine makes 332 pound-feet of torque to go with the 340 horses, with all of that twist available at an accessible 3,500 rpm. Combined with an excellent eight-speed automatic transmission, that translates to smooth power delivery and laid-back speed.
  • Range Rovers have always offered decked-out interiors, but the 2016 iteration of the cabin is downright decadent. Pale leather swathed my test car’s innards; something so light wouldn’t be my first choice, but the application is stunning. Every control or surface that I encountered felt hand-crafted and looked remarkably stylish. Rubber mats with white leather seats… that’s something you can only get away with in a Range Rover. Oh, and if you’re a music fan at all, the 825-watt, $1,850 Meridian sound system is highly recommended.
  • Ride quality is good in that “floating over the Earth” sort of way. ...