Range Rover Evoque Convertible

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Range Rover’s Evoque, the entry-level model within the brand’s line-up, has been a great success for carmaker Land Rover. Based on the LRX concept, this compact sports utility vehicle (SUV) is equipped with the brand’s Terrain Response system, which helps the Evoque conquer a variety of surfaces.

Range Rover Evoque Convertible

Since its inception 5 years ago, the Evoque has become a halo model for the British luxury marque, hitting worldwide sales above and beyond expectations. Its compact dimensions and stylish design were pure magic.

A sophisticated fabric roof creates a crisply defined silhouette that remains faithful to the original design of the Evoque.

Cabrio variants have worked for many cars, such as any model from BMW and also the Jaguar F-Type. But, when I first laid eyes on the Evoque Convertible, however, I was not quite sure what to make of it.

The Soft-Top Evoque is nowhere as sharp looking as a regular Evoque, even though Range Rover has tried to ensure the car’s original adored shaped is not compromised. Like the Volkswagen Golf GTI cabriolet, its design will, however, take some getting used to. With the top down, you would even be hard-pressed to deny its similarity to a tiny hatch.

Sure, I do get a fair share of stares whilst driving with the vehicle but I am not sure if they are stares of compliment or contempt.

Like most Range Rovers, the insides are easier to love. A nicely-laid out, modern and luxurious cabin remains, and the car now gets Jaguar Land Rover’s new INControl Touch Pro infotainment system, which is faster, more responsive, highly intuitive and gorgeously rendered.

The new 10.2-inch INControl Touch Pro infotainment system is the cabin’s centre of attraction.

The front seats are spacious and comfortable with 12-way electric memory function, but the rear seats are a tighter fit due to the 2+2 seating configuration.

In the Convertible, the trunk capacity is jeopardised compared to the regular Evoque, by about half. In place of the regular Evoque’s big opening is a small hatch that opens to reveal a shrunken goods capacity of 251 litres, and accessing it will need a rather strong back.

The Convertible is most impressive when driven with the top down. The foldable roof lowers in 18 seconds and rises in 21 seconds at speeds of up to 48km/h.

With the roof up, the Convertible betrays some wind buffeting, which makes me think one of the windows is not closed fully.

Even with an added weight of 281kg over the regular Evoque, the nearly 2 tonnes Convertible is not what I consider slow.

Its turbocharged 2-litre engine four-cylinder pumps out 177kW of power and 340Nm of torque, similar to its hardtop sibling. It goes from zero to 100km/h in 8.6 seconds. Throttle response is light and linear with the stickiness associated with a 9-speed auto.

To get any punch out of this powertrain, I have to work it above 2,500rpm. The car is nimble in city driving and takes corners far better than I expect. It is a pleasant car to drive.

If you do not mind its few limitations and you happen to like its looks, you can be sure it will give you plenty of motoring fun in the sun.
  • Engine: 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol and diesel
  • Output: 177kW/340Nm petrol, 132kW/430Nm diesel
  • Transmission: Nine-speed automatic
  • Fuel: 8.6L/100km petrol, 5.7L/100km diesel
  • CO2: 201g/km petrol, 149g/km diesel
  • Price: From $84,948 (plus on-road costs)
  • Warranty: 3 years/100,000km