Monday, February 7, 2011

2011 Range Rover Sport

2011 Range Rover Sport
2011 Range Rover Sport
2011 Range Rover Sport2011 Range Rover Sport

Despite enduring a string of financial hardships, Land Rover still enjoys one of the clearest and most robust brand identities in the automotive kingdom. The English automaker has held the same core values since the company's first off-roader was created by Maurice Wilks in 1948. Wilks reportedly designed the first Land Rover to emulate a Jeep he had driven, and the first Land Rover prototype actually utilized a chassis borrowed from that legendary American off-roader. And much like Jeep, when you think of Land Rover, the words rugged, purpose-built, and capable are sure to come to mind, but the two storied marques part company when it comes to luxury amenities. England's four-wheeling pride and joy can be found in places like Africa, the Middle East, Australia's Outback and as well as the ritziest precincts of Beverly Hills and Monte Carlo.

While the core identity of Land Rover hasn't deviated much over the years, its product lineup has grown substantially. After Ford purchased Land Rover from BMW in 2000, the brand added the supremely capable LR4 and Range Rover Sport to a struggling lineup. The Sport traces its looks and name to the top-end Range Rover model, but its underpinnings are actually based on the LR4, with an integrated bodyframe semi-monocoque construction for a combination of rough and ready off-roading and good noise isolation characteristics.

The sportiest of Range Rovers has been a solid entry in the luxury mountain climbing segment for a half-decade, but the folks at Land Rover have given the Sport a very thorough update for 2010 to help it live up to fast and flashy new competitors like the Porsche Cayenne and BMW's X5/X6 M twins. We were able to get our hands on a new 2010 Range Rover Sport with the company's new Jaguar-derived supercharged 5.0-liter V8 to see if it's as accomplished on paved streets as it is off-road. Hit the jump to see if it's still our cup of tea.


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