Thursday, 23 August 2012 12:26 PM
The new Land Rover Freelander 2 is looking, well, rather like a slightly smaller Range Rover. The latest incarnation of the baby of the line-up has chunkier looks, more luxury, some handy toys, a 5 star Euro NCAP award for outstanding adult occupant protection - and, as a bonus, pretty handy fuel economy for an SUV.
Opt for the two-wheel drive eD4 version with six-speed manual transmission and stop-start function, and you'll get combined fuel economy of 47.1mpg and emissions at 158g/km. Not bad, not bad at all. Or there's another diesel, the 2.2-litre 148bhp TD4 or 187bhp SD4, both with four-wheel drive.
Fuel is also saved across the board with smart charging - this is the Intelligent Power System Management which features regenerative charging so, when possible, the car only charges the battery as it decelerates, recovering kinetic energy rather than sucking up fuel. It's part of Landy's e_TERRAIN TECHNOLOGIES programme to improve efficiency in off-road vehicles.
For off-roading, there's a new look centre console - here you'll see the original Terrain Response dial has been replaced by switches to choose the right setting for the terrain, and there's a shutter which offers additional storage space.
There are plenty of other toys to play with - the seven-inch touchscreen to control music, phone and sat-nav, an 825W sound system with 17 speakers, CD, AM/FM, DAB, DVD, Virtual CD, iPod and USB capabilities for some models, rear view camera and Say What You See voice commands.
Two new levels of trim have also been added to the range - the sporty "Dynamic" and the top-of-the-line "HSE Lux" versions. The Dynamic version features a full body styling kit, leather sports seats, 19-inch 10-spoke wheels, and a choice of three new interior colours - Ebony, Ivory and Pimento. At entry level, the Freelancer S has cloth seats as standard, while the GS has the full leather interior and gloss black grille. The HSE has classy wood interior trim and standard kit including: panoramic sunroof, memory function for the driver’s seat and door mirrors and the 825W Meridian surround sound audio system.
Other cool additions include a smart parking brake that adjusts brake force depending on the slope you've parked on and Passive start which means if the key is somewhere in the car, it will start at the press of a button.
With 17-inch alloys as standard and a meatier front grille, the new look screams to the world that this is well and truly part of the Range Rover family. New exterior colours include Aintree Green, Havana and Mauritius Blue. Front and rear lights feature Xenon LED technology, new grille and fog light bezels and paint detailing on the front grille surround, insert bars and fender vents.
And we won't even have to wait for Paris to get a decent look at this one - it makes its global debut next week (August 29) at the Moscow International Motor Show.
By Georgia Lewis
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