Taking its name from the pseudonym adopted by the first Range Rover prototypes from 1969 comes the fourth member of the rapidly expanding Range Rover family. The Velar will join the eponymous flagship model, the Sport and the Evoque. Sharing a platform with Jaguar Land Rover Group sibling’s F-Pace, the Velar will slot in between the Range Rover Sport and Evoque, providing a mid-priced, mid-sized alternative. Styling-wise, the Velar also sits between the aforementioned pair. Its rising shoulder line, falling roofline and crimped rear window mark out its sporting intentions, though its tall silhouette is more traditional SUV. The Velar will also see the debut of a new two-screen infotainment system with the ability to flick information between each screen, and a touchpanel centre console. The Velar’s door handles fold flush with the body when not in use and burnished copper accents can be specified on the exterior. Interestingly, for all its premium pretensions, a wool-blend and synthetic suede upholstery is available, though Land Rover does well to quell any low-rent fears by calling it a “Premium Textile" finish.
Why it matters: Aside from its promise to make fabric upholstery great again, the Velar could finally be the first populist Range Rover (for a given value of populist), and not just because it’ll be priced beneath the Sport variant. There are some who don’t have a need the behemoth proportions of a full-sized Range Rover, find the Evoque too small and won’t stoop to buying a Land Rover Discovery.