Once in a while the chance comes along to drive someone else’s car, which is good; but the snag is you don’t get enough time with them. Not all the secrets are revealed and not all buttons pressed nor knobs twiddled. All that can be achieved from a short drive and a once-over is an overall impression but, hey, it’s better than nothing. Such is the case with this Range Rover Evoque, a car that for some reason has never appealed.
It is extremely popular given the number seen on the road and yet for no justifiable reason I can think of I had taken against the Evoque. Perhaps I felt it was a bit too ‘Chelsea school run’; a bit too ‘Cheshire’ for its own good? All of which goes to show that you shouldn’t pre-judge these things.
The car pictured is a regular 4WD four cylinder 2.2L diesel, so no surprises there. It will manage 0-60mph in eight seconds and feels more powerful than the spec suggests. The company reckon that over 40mpg is achievable. It’s the usual six-speed automatic gearbox with paddle option. Put it in Drive and it is relaxed and comfortable. Switching to the paddle shifts livens things up and makes driving more fun but the gearbox is great either way.
Climbing in, it was easy to immediately get comfortable and the interior is a very nice place to be, especially for this money. All the extras are available as you’d expect – including a necessary reversing camera – plus the added bonus of a panoramic glass roof which helped to make for a pleasant, light atmosphere. I suggest that it could get a bit gloomy inside without it so that’s one essential option box ticked.
From the outside the ‘squashed’ look deceives the eye but in fact there is no sense of the roof pressing down on you. There’s plenty of space. Out on the road I warmed very quickly to the Evoque. I found it excellent to drive and it could be hurried along without the sense of overdoing things. It was comfortable with a clear view of the road ahead. In short, I was converted. Of all the cars I would love to own, this is honestly the one I would choose for my daily driver. That’s how much of a convert I became. At £40,000 it is something of a bargain too.