It’s my first time driving a Range Rover, apart from a quick snow driving experience in Andorra, and in England, every man and his dog seems to own one. In my case, when it comes to standing out, it would be much more of a challenge than I thought. For me, I like to stand out and be noticed when I drive cars.
Until, I realized after travelling from Oxford in the Velar to the Yorkshire Dales and the Peak District, that I only saw one other one on the road. As I got overtaken by a Discovery and an Evoque, I noticed they were overtaking me to see what the design difference was all about.
Design & Size
From the moment it turned up, for whatever reason I thought it was going to be small, but I was wrong. It’s wide (193cm) and very long (480cm) with ample boot space (558l). MSF car nut Jimi is in the process of buying another SUV and on this occasion, he was keen to find out if it fitted his windsurf gear. I wanted to test to see as passenger how comfortable I could sit with all his kit towering over me. I was very impressed and so was he. He was pleased it passed the windsurfing test and I was happy I could sit in the front with comfort.
After booting him and is equipment out. I decided to take a step back and look at it. And as for a wow factor, the colour red and design was very flashy indeed. It is a really good looking SUV. This car had that such pulling power, that over the next few days I never got tired looking at it and taking photos.
In fact, as far as car photography went, it certainly was Britain’s next top model winner. The perfect, fashion car to showcase models all around the globe for fashion week this month. Or on this occasion, it looked great in the city of York, the Yorkshire Dales and the Peak District, as well as back down at Blenheim Palace standing alone in the massive car park.
I had just handed back a Bentley Flying Spur, so when it came to comfort and design there is no way it was going to match. It could never be due to the Velar costing £75,000 compared to the Bentley at £179,000. But when I opened the door the snow-white interior and heathered grey fabric was something very new to me. This sofa interior looking design had me more and more intrigued. It was an interior that I could not help touching. The car materials used, including the two displays, the knobs and even the air vents were very stylish indeed.
Having two kids with me, I turned white as fear gripped me regarding how it would end up looking after a week. I was very strict with them and no eating at all was allowed.
I can only describe the fabric as a retro throwback of my love for velvet fabrics, on this occasion it was, suede cloth. To have it on the dashboard reminded me of my Italian upbringing when my cousins would glue carpet on the dashboard for a luxury message. Thanks to Range Rover, they pulled it off much better.
The same suede cloth was on the steering wheel, which was very nice to feel and drive with.
Feeling such a soft material whilst driving was quirky. My children loved placing their faces on the dashboard, don’t ask the thought process on this one? It kept them entertained and that’s a bonus for me. This Velar had personality both inside and out, it was a lifestyle car after all.
Driving Performance At High Speed
Again it is unfair to compare the handling on long distances when it comes to driving a Bentley. So it took me some time getting used to in the Velar. I found it actually a bit too light on the steering wheel. It was very sensitive at high speed and in high winds even more so. This as a mum was a tad distracting especially when I had screaming kids in the back seats. Even as I changed the driving modes it would not change. As far as any SUV I have driven and I have owned many over the years, The Range Rover Velar was a car I was never entirely relaxed when it came to driving on the highway at high speeds, due to the sensitivity of the steering.
This beautiful part of Britain was the perfect place to test all the technology in the Velar. The narrow roads were busy and braking, taking corners, not at high speed, was well tested here. This car was perfect for this environment. The braking was excellent and the comfort of the seats driving for hours on end was lovely.
When it came to navigation I trusted the Range Rover Velar’s GPS 100 percent. I loved the two display screens. So did my daughter who also tested all the features and technology the car had to offer. With the Velar, I travelled to parts of Britain I have never been too, so this GPS had to get me there. So when I was heading to the stunning city of York let alone the Yorkshire Dales, I was blown away how accurate and precise and easy to use this GPS was. It was clear, bang on point and got me to my destinations every single time. The GPS repeated the instructions three times before I had to make the turns. I am in love with this GPS. The displays were bright, large enough and very clear to see. It was the best I have experienced in all the luxury SUV’s since 2015.
Parking And Steering
Parking was very easy, I loved all the tech available for self-parking. In the city of York, it was well-received. There is a nice big screen to see where I needed to manoeuvre with caution and care. It’s a large car so parking it can be a challenge in built-up cities, let alone tight multistory car parks. But the steering was light and it was not that much of a challenge at all, with all the displays screaming at me not to hit anything.
Regarding design boot space of The Range Rover Velar, it stored my 100kg of luggage with ease. I loved how it was blacked out in the back, so I could safely leave my luggage in the back without anyone realizing that there was anything in the car. A risk I was willing to take on many occasions.
Glass Roof And Back Seats
Touring around Yorkshire Dales and The Peak District is truly stunning and to have a roof which is all glass was an added bonus of having the sightseeing tour literally in the back seat. When the weather was rough, we were not affected because as we stopped, we looked up and out of the roof glass and loved what we were looking at.
It’s a nice touch when it opens automatically when I start the car and closes when I stop and park. Regarding back seat passenger space ample of room for toys and girlie bags.
I travelled from Oxfordshire to York through the Yorkshire Dales, the Peak District back down to Oxfordshire. Then to and from Tyringham Hall back to Woodstock for the Blenheim Palace. I did this on a tank and a half, which was excellent value for money.
As for my first time driving a Range Rover, I can now understand why they are a must-have in the UK. When it came to design and image, I really felt very funky indeed. More so than ever, the style of what I drive has to match my personal style and lifestyle. It is a car that I would tour around for both business and pleasure. Every time, I parked the Range Rover Velar, I always turned back to admire, both its colour and design.
It certainly is Britain’s, Next Top SUV Model.