Sunday, June 16, 2024

2024 Range Rover Autobiography LWB : A new standard for premium utility vehicles

Benjamin Yong Darpan, 27 May, 2024
  • 2024 Range Rover Autobiography LWB : A new standard for premium utility vehicles

The 2024 Range Rover Autobiography LWB (long wheelbase) might just be the most beautiful seven-passenger SUV on the market today.

“New Range Rover is a vehicle with a peerless character, from the impeccable restraint of its exterior to the flawless tranquil sanctuary of its cabin. Informed by creative intellect and a desire for perfection, it doesn’t follow fashion or trend, but by a modernist design philosophy, combined with over 50 years of evolution,” says Gerry McGovern, Jaguar Land Rover chief creative officer, in a media release.

Subtly evolving the styling with each generation, the full-size SUV echoes heritage models via the high sill line and short overhangs, while adding in contemporary elements including a slimmed-down headlights and grille, boat tail rear and curved body panels. The exterior more than simply looks windswept — JLR says the aerodynamic 0.30 drag coefficient rating is the lowest in the segment. Pretty impressive for a 5,258-millimetre long three-row people hauler.

The full-width bar, finished in classy satin chrome, found within the lower central intake conceals the foglights, forward radar and parking sensors. A friend pointed out to me the dual shark fin antennae atop the roof are an odd design choice, however according to the manufacturer is something unavoidable due to all the large amounts of wireless connectivity the vehicles currently require.

A nice feature is that upon approach and carrying the key fob, the flush mounted door handles pop out and welcome lighting illuminates. I’m happy to report the latest iteration still boasts the plushest, most comfortable chairs on the market. The front pair, swathed in semi-aniline leather, are 24-way adjustable, heated and cooled and have strong multi-zone massaging functionality. Even the Executive Class Comfort seats in the back have four-way powered lumbar and headrest adjustment, and are four-degree inclinable and 12-degree reclinable.

The 13.1-inch Pivi Pro infotainment system is complemented by a crystal-clear Meridian Signature stereo and optional rear seat entertainment package, though I was surprised to discover the second-row displays cannot stream any content but is rather restricted to plugging in media using an HDMI cable. Nearly everything is touch-controlled and in my opinion at least a few physical knobs in the centre stack would allow for simpler operation.

A beefy new flagship P530 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 — producing 523 horsepower and 553 lb-ft of torque — propels the 6,000-plus-pound behemoth, and the engine is 17 per cent more efficient than the previous eight-cylinder. A smooth eight-speed automatic takes care of shifting duties.

The Electronic Air Suspension with Dynamic Response Pro keeps the ride supple at all times no matter the road conditions, and the combination of all-wheel steering, Electronic Active Differential with Torque Vectoring by Braking and multiple camera views makes driving this extended Range Rover much easier than anticipated.

MSRP: $106,954

Motor: 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8

Horsepower: 523 @ 5,500 rpm

Torque (lb-ft): 553 @ 1,800 rpm

Gearbox: Eight-speed automatic

Layout: front engine, all-wheel drive

Fuel economy: 18.6 L/100 km mixed city/highway (observed)



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