Review: Range Rover Velar

After much teasing of the press, the new Range Rover Velar was unveiled by design director Gerry McGovern. If the official debut is anything to go by – it was accompanied by an orchestra as well as the dulcet tones of host Damian Lewis (the British actor made famous for portraying Sergeant Nicholas Brody in the show Homeland) at London's new Design Museum - the Velar is something special.

It's only the fourth distinct Range Rover model, which fits in between the Range Rover Evoque and the Range Rover Sports models. It sits between the two in design: it has a combination of modern lines, and it's just the right size. This story continues on the inside.

The dashboard takes a hint from smartphone design – specifically Apple's – with minimal, low-key dials and a 10-in tablet screen console. Below the first screen sits another screen, which works in conjunction with the upper screen (you can even swipe information from one screen to the other) and lets you control just about every aspect of the car.

By embracing the touchscreen, Range Rover's design team has reduced the number of physical controls to just two rotary dials below the bottom screen. The interior surprises don't stop there, either. Velar customers can specify a fabric interior, developed by Swedish technical material specialists Kvadrat. It's an upmarket fabric interior the likes of which has never existed before and produced from recycled materials.

The exterior features design flairs all its own, including pop-out flush door handles, burnished copper trim elements and standard LED headlamps with slim openings to enhance the design of the car. Under the hood, you'll find the unusual Land Rover fare – from four-cylinder diesel to supercharged six-cylinder petrol options. No prices are available just yet but expect it to sit nicely between the Evoque and Sports models when it goes on sale in July.

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