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The most urban of SUVs has nothing metrosexual under the hood.
Tags:2010 Range Rover Sport Car Review,car reviews,car tech,cnet,SUV reviews,2010 land rover range rover sport,2010 land rover range rover sport supercharged car,2010 Land Rover Ranger Rover Sport,brian cooley
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2010 Land Rover Ranger Rover Sport
Lots of SUVs never see an unpaved road, but this one, at least, looks like. that's not a great loss. It's the muscular, stylish Land Rover Ranger Rover Sport Supercharged. Let's check the tech on the asphalt. Our Sport Supercharged is finished in some color they call "Bourneville," kind of an eggplanty brown, over Arabica tobacco-colored hides. Just gorgeous. The wheels remind more than one person of a modern take on the Maltese cross. And you'll just want to move into the cabin. It's all a gorgeous statement that explains a large part of Land Rover's ongoing appeal. Aside from the very stylish layout of things, the main action is going on right here on the head unit, which is standard in a Sport. The whole navigation rig. It's just part of the trim level and of course, certainly on this more expensive supercharged edition. It doesn't mean that I love it, though. Is that looks familiar to you? It's that damn unit we saw on a couple Jaguars recently and I just don't like it. It's got this goofy, sort of weird logic for how it lays things out. Luckily, it foregoes a lot of this flash, shockwave animation, but nonetheless, it's not a great information layout for some reason. I don't know exactly what's wrong with it, but I just find it frustrating to navigate, and I'm not the only one. The positioning of the screen is kind of a disaster, over here, under the eyebrow of the windshield, and tilted skyward, lots of washout on this guy. That said, we have a lot of other good sources. Radio and satellite radio, it's Sirius satellite radio, AM/FM, and we have HD radio optioned up on this vehicle and it works quite well. Here, you've got a few things. This iPod connector on this real chunky, off-roadish cable is one that's going to come standard on this vehicle. USB drive is right up here as well. Also we have DVD playback here. Now, Range Rover Sport Supercharged comes stocked with a Harman Kardon and Logic seven audio system, so you've got their own synthetic sort of surround. It's not real 5.1 or 7.1 or THX or Dolby or any of that. 12 channels of amplification, 14 speakers around the cabin, and 480 watts driving all that. One choice transmission on this guy. Six-speed automatic. This big, old chunky shifter right here, knock it over here to get a sport mode defaulted, as well as shift ability. You can also do that with the paddles, downshift, up shift on separate paddles. They float with the wheel, amateur style. You've also got this terrain response knob. We've seen this before. It goes from gravel to snow to ruts, some things like that, but a new position we haven't seen before, the curvy road, that is dynamic mode. And it puts the vehicle in more of a sport mode that also ties in to this adaptive suspension on this vehicle that is going to adjust to the driving style and speeds at the time. And next to that, you've got your vehicle ride height, a hill descent control, and also your four-wheel drive controls for high and low range. You also have voice command for the nav system, but it's one of those -- cancel. Sorry. That is really stupid but then it requires you to know a whole bunch of pre-scripted commands. Now, here's the rear seat entertainment system that I mentioned. Don't be fooled by some mention of 10-inch LCDs on the Range Rover Sport website. That's just BS. You've got these kind of standard, almost smallish headrest mounted monitors. They look good, though, and they're nicely faired in. You've got a six-disc DVD changer in the back, behind that little carpeted door with a bunch of sharp edges and a bunch of unfinished wiring. About the shabbiest disc installation I've seen in the last couple years. Single remote control with one of these left and right buttons, so everything can happen separately or together on these. And down here, you've got two sets of AV auxiliary input. So a very flexible system, but God, that six-disc in the back is Neanderthal. Now, of course, our Range Rover is a Range Rover Supercharged. That's to this part. That big, old intake there is force fed by a blower to get 510 horsepower, 461 foot-pounds of torque, five liter V8, by the way. Moves this big beast, and I mean big. It's pushing three tons. From 0 to 60 in about six seconds, that's pretty darn good. Fuel economy, not so good, 12/17. You know what that means, 14 overall. Bring your wallet. Now, nothing approaching 6,000 pounds has the right to call itself sport anything, unless it means sumo. However, the Range Rover Sport Supercharged does have remarkably good reflexes. Power comes on rather emphatically, especially in dynamic mode or when you select your own gears and keep the revs up. The adaptive suspension erases most of the sense that you're going to tip over in a hard corner, but that said, this is still a truck sitting on a frame with an automatic that wants to loaf unless you poke it and prod it. In all, though, the experience is one of forceful presence, not tubbiness. Okay, let's price this big, gentrified, bad, son of a bitch. $74,000.00 base, Range Rover Sport Supercharged, hence the price is kind of up there. These are very well equipped in that trim level. On top of that, your big tech toy is the rear seat entertainment system for $2500.00. A tad pricey, but well, consider the car. $350.00 a la carte for HD radio. And the other one is adaptive cruise control and collision mitigation braking system. Our vehicle doesn't have it, but it's a $2,000.00 additional package.