Range Rover Sport gets perkier SVR, plug-in hybrid

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The P400e variant is in fact JLR's first ever plug-in hybrid, and it's said to be capable of covering 51km on electric power alone.

The Range Rover Sport is faster, as is the new SVR (more on that in a second), but the P400e can still blast from 0-62mph in 6.7 seconds before topping out at 137mph.

Charging time is 7.5 hours from a plug (2.75 from a special wall box) and gives a claimed range of 31 miles (20 is probably about right in the real world).

Jeremy Hicks, Jaguar Land Rover managing director, said: "The current Range Rover Sport has performed exceptionally well in the United Kingdom market since it was introduced in 2013 selling just shy of 50,000 vehicles to date".

Also as part of the mid-life update, power of the SVR's 5.0-litre supercharged V8 has been raised from 550hp to 575hp to help improve the 0-100kph time from 4.8sec to 4.6sec.

Although the SVR is the most exciting model in the line-up for pure speed, it is the petrol-electric plug-in hybrid, badged P400e, that is most important for Land Rover, addressing previous criticisms of poor fuel economy and emissions from the Range Rover Sport. No doubt the new Range Rover Sport SVR would do an admirable job of both compared to, say, a Porsche Boxter S, but this particular SUV is made to compete on pavement.

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Predictive Energy Optimisation (PEO) function - entering a destination in the navigation system enables the feature, which utilises in built GPS altitude data for the selected route, to intelligently combine the electric motor and petrol engine to maximise fuel economy.

While the hybrid in the P400e works similarly to systems found in other brands, a highlight is the so-called Predictive Energy Optimisation whereby the driver can select a destination in the sat-nav system and allow the vehicle to automatically optimise the operation of the internal combustion engine and electric motor. "All it takes to open the blind is a rearward swipe in front of the rear-view mirror, and forwards to close" and new "Pixel laser LED headlights" at the front.

Nick Collins, vehicle line director at JLR, said: "The new Range Rover Sport strikes a compelling balance between dynamic capability, passenger comfort and efficiency".

The battery has a capacity of 13.1kWh and can be charged fully in two hours 45 minutes using a 32amp charger, or seven hours 30 minutes using the supplied 10amp, three-pin home charging cable. He also hailed the diesel and petrol engines as "our cleanest ever".

A base 2018 Land Rover Range Rover Sport SE fitted with the gas V6 starts at the same $66,750* MSRP as its predecessor, with the Td6 diesel coming in at $2,000 more.