Land Rover is planning a faster and sportier edition of the Range Rover Evoque, likely to be badged Evoque Sport, Auto Express has learned. The news surfaced during an interview with design director Gerry McGovern at the Beijing Motor Show.
“You can go too far with the Evoque, but what’s so right about the car is it has what I call killer proportions,” McGovern said. “For the moment, we’re looking at the cabriolet and special editions – we could do a more overtly sporty one, for example.”
Executives have hinted at a performance version of the Evoque in the past, but this is the first time anyone has said it outright. The revelation was well timed, too, because across the show hall Audi was unveiling the RS Q3 concept, which previews a direct rival for this car.
“Eighty per cent of Evoque buyers are completely new to the Land Rover brand,” McGovern said. That, he added, allowed the brand to push the boundaries, as well as broaden its appeal with models such as the Evoque Cabrio and Special Edition with Victoria Beckham. But it’s the Evoque Sport that fans have been waiting for.
McGovern didn’t go as far as to confirm which engines would be offered, but a development of the current 240bhp 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo seems a safe bet. The Ford-sourced EcoBoost engine has already been tuned to 296bhp in British specialist Radical’s stripped-out SR3 supercar, so more power is certainly possible.
Given the popularity of diesel-powered Evoques, a performance diesel could also be on the cards. This would use the 2.2-litre SD4 engine, boosted from 190bhp to around 210bhp, and do 0-60mph in a little over seven seconds.
Land Rover’s designers are expected to add bigger wheels and a beefy bodykit. Sports suspension will drop the car by around 10mm, while bigger brakes and sharper steering will ensure the handling is improved.
It’s early days in the Evoque’s lifecycle, and supply is struggling to meet demand. So don’t expect the Evoque Sport to debut until late next year at the earliest.