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2020 Land Rover Range Rover Sport Review

One step down from the luxurious Range Rover is the slightly smaller 2020 Land Rover Range Rover Sport. Like its larger sibling, the Range Rover Sport offers a wide range of trims, features and engine choices that include supercharged and turbocharged gas engines, a turbodiesel V6 and a new plug-in hybrid (PHEV) powered by a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine and electric motor combo. Unlike the Range Rover, the Sport also offers a third-row seat option on some trims, as well as a sportier demeanor. Inside, the Range Rover Sport is awash in the finest leather and wood, every bit as luxurious at the finest Cadillac, Lexus or Infiniti SUV, but with that certain British charm only a Land Rover can replicate.

What’s New for 2020?

For 2020, the plug-in hybrid model introduced last year finally makes it to Land Rover showrooms. New features for the entire line include standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, some new paint and wheel choices plus a slight reshuffling of the standard and optional equipment roster. The new turbocharged mild hybrid inline 6-cylinder engine introduced midway through last year’s model run returns as the base engine in the SE and HSE trims. See the Land Rover Range Rover Sport models for sale near you

What We Like

  • Elegant styling
  • Impressive power and handling ability
  • First-rate luxury trappings
  • Off-road prowess
  • Diesel and plug-in hybrid engine options

What We Don’t

  • Slightly claustrophobic interior when done in black
  • Big blind spot over driver’s shoulder
  • Poor fuel economy with the V8
  • Can feel like a bull in a china shop in crowded confines

How Much?

$68,650–$135,000

Fuel Economy

The 2020 Land Rover Range Rover Sport offers a choice of three engines. The SE and HSE employ a turbocharged mild hybrid 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine, good for 355 horsepower and 365 lb-ft of torque. In the HST, this same engine bumps output to 395 hp and torque to 406 lb-ft. Teamed with the standard all-wheel drive (AWD) and 8-speed automatic. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) fuel economy estimates were not available at the time of this review, but in the larger Range Rover, this engine returns 19 miles per gallon in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. Optional in the SE and HSE is a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 that’s good for 254 hp and 440 lb-ft of torque. EPA estimates for this engine are 22 mpg city/28 mpg hwy. The HSE and Autobiography P400e Plug-in Hybrid uses a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine and electric motor to generate 398 hp and 472 lb-ft of torque. EPA fuel economy estimates are not yet available, but Land Rover says the P400e can travel up to 31 miles solely on electric power and that the hybrid system in no way limits the vehicle’s maximum water wading depth.

The HSE and Autobiography P525 trims employ a supercharged 5.0-liter V8, which is good for 518 hp and 461 lb-ft. EPA estimates for this engine are 14 mpg city/19 mpg hwy. The SVR employs the same V8 but bumps hp and torque to 575 and 502, respectively, with no change in the EPA figures.

Standard Features & Options

The Land Rover Range Rover Sport comes in five trims, each with their own optional upgrades: SE, HSE, HST, Autobiography and SVR. The new P400e plug-in hybrid is now offered on the HSE and Autobiography trim.

The base SE ($68,650) includes a turbocharged 3.0-liter mild hybrid engine, an 8-speed automatic transmission, AWD with adjustable Terrain Response settings, an air suspension with Automatic Access Height, front and rear parking sensors, lane-departure warning with autonomous emergency braking, 14-way power front seats, power-folding and heated side mirrors with a reverse tilt-down feature, rain-sensing wipers, keyless entry, a rearview camera, LED headlights, leather seating, dual-zone automatic climate control, a power tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel, a power rear lift gate, 19-in alloy wheels, 8-speaker audio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto plus InControl Touch Pro Duo featuring dual 10-in touchscreens and navigation.

The base SE Td6 ($69,500) includes the same equipment as the supercharged SE, but adds the diesel engine.

The HSE ($74,250) adds perforated and heated 16-way front seats, Windsor leather seating, fog lights, 20-in alloy wheels, heated front seats, a fixed panoramic sunroof and an 11-speaker 380-watt Meridian sound system. It also adds features from the SE’s optional Drive Pac and Park packages that include a blind-spot monitor, driver condition monitor, traffic sign recognition, 360-degree parking aid and rear cross-traffic alert.

The HSE Td6 ($75,000) includes the same equipment as the supercharged HSE, but adds the diesel engine.

The Range Rover Sport HSE P400e ($79,000) adds the 19-speaker Meridian audio, the Off-Road package (2-speed transfer case, All Terrain Progress Control, Terrain Response 2 and Adaptive Dynamics) the plug-in hybrid powertrain and some additional screens to monitor the electric goings-on.

The HST ($82,950) adds the 3.0-liter 395-hp inline-6, unique exterior finishes, the Off-Road package, 21-in black finished wheels, red Brembo brake calipers, automatic high beam assist, 22-way climate front seats with heated rear seats and a heated steering wheel, 360-degree parking aid with rearview camera, Adaptive Dynamics, a 19-speaker 825-watt Meridian sound system, sliding panoramic roof plus a contrasting black roof and exterior trim.

The HSE P525 ($86,500) adds to the HST with a 5.0-liter supercharged V8 engine, a more sophisticated Terrain Response 2 AWD system, All-Terrain Progress Control, Dynamic Response with lean control, a Dynamic Active Rear Locking Differential and Adaptive Dynamics with variable damper control.

The top-of-the-line Autobiography ($97,500) brings a 19-speaker Meridian audio system, automatic high beams, adaptive LED headlights, heated and ventilated 22-way power front seats, 21-in wheels, a 360-degree Surround View camera, a heated rear seat, rear cross-traffic alert and blind spot monitoring.

The Autobiography P400e ($88,990) adds the plug-in hybrid powertrain and feature set.

The performance-oriented SVR ($114,500) brings more horsepower, a recalibrated sport suspension, an electronically-controlled active 2-stage exhaust, unique sport seats and interior trim, a recalibrated locking rear differential, 6-piston Brembo brakes, aggressive bumper and front fascia design and revised electric power steering.

Many of the Autobiography’s standard features can be found in options packages on the other trims.

The Climate Comfort package adds a heated steering wheel, a front center console refrigerated compartment and twin-blade sun visors. The Drive package adds blind spot monitoring, drive-condition monitoring, traffic sign recognition and adaptive speed monitor, while the Drive Pro package adds to this adaptive speed control, blind spot assist and lane-keeping assist. Next, 5+2 seating adds a small third-row seat, while the Tow package adds Activity Key, Advanced Tow Assist and tow hitch receiver. Premium options include a 1,700-watt, 23-speaker Meridian audio system, climate-controlled rear seats, 4-zone automatic climate control, a head-up display, soft door closers and a rear-seat entertainment system.

Safety

The 2020 Land Rover Range Rover Sport comes standard with a full array of safety features, including front-side and side-curtain airbags, electronic traction and stability control and an adjustable speed limiter. The various available driver aids include autonomous emergency braking, traffic sign detection, rear traffic detection and a blind spot monitoring system.

Neither the government nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has crash-tested the Range Rover Sport.

Behind the Wheel

We chose the Range Rover Sport HSE with the new turbocharged mild hybrid I6, as we wanted to see if there was really any disadvantage to going with less power to save money. To our surprise, we found this engine more than capable, delivering excellent off-the-line starts and an abundance of passing power. The Range Rover Sport looks big and menacing, but it’s amazingly agile and really quite enjoyable when the road begins to twist and turn.

Around town, the Range Rover Sport’s size does present a problem, especially in areas where parking spaces are drawn for Prius-size cars. However, numerous electronic parking aids, including the surround-view camera, help alleviate some of the hassle.

Leave the confines of city life and the Range Rover Sport reveals its trump card: amazing off-road prowess. The Terrain Response AWD system is simply phenomenal. Be it muddy paths or unplowed back roads, our Range Rover Sport, even with its 20-in performance tires, simply pushed through it all with ease.

All was not sunshine and roses on this test-drive, however. The third-row seat option is useless for carrying adults, and even kids will end up with cramps after an hour or two. We also had a problem with the rather large B-pillar next to the driver’s head (it creates a huge blind spot) and the odd placement of the upward-facing power window switches, which allowed rain to soak the panel every time we lowered the window.

Other Cars to Consider

2020 BMW X5 — The X5 may be the only SUV with better handling, but it’s not large inside, and the ride can be somewhat punishing with the bigger wheel and tire setup.

2020 Porsche Cayenne — The Cayenne offers more model choices and a lower base price. However, you can’t get a third-row seat option, and the Cayenne can’t follow the Range Rover Sport in the toughest off-road situations.

2020 Audi Q8Audi’s Q8 is the new flagship SUV and feels a bit more carlike in the way it rides and handles, but offers no diesel, hybrid or V8 engine option.

Used Mercedes-Benz AMG GL63 — You’ll get scintillating performance and more interior room in a 2011-2014 M-B AMG GL63. Plus, you can get a longer warranty via the Mercedes-Benz certified pre-owned (CPO) program.

Autotrader’s Advice

Go with the HSE and either the turbocharged, plug-in hybrid or turbodiesel V6, then load it up with option packages. You’ll save a ton of cash, get better fuel economy than with the V8 and still have a very enjoyable SUV that will impress your friends and family. Find a Land Rover Range Rover Sport for sale

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