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Range Rover Evoque Convertible on a test run

They say that good things come to those that wait, and Jaguar Land Rover have certainly taken this phrase to the very extreme with the development and launch of the Range Rover Evoque Convertible. 

Back in 2012 at the Geneva Motor Show, the car was first revealed as a concept, and now, nearly 4 years later, it will finally come to fruition when it takes a bow on forecourts in 2016. Apparently, according to Auto Express, there has been a lot of debate and argument amongst the movers and shakers of Land Rover when it comes to the car’s business case rather than engineering viability, but that has obviously been sorted out now!

The Range Rover Evoque has been a bit of a revelation since it first appeared, and Nationwide Vehicle Contracts currently offer great leasing deals on the likes of the Evoque Coupe and the Evoque Hatchback but when it comes to what is the world’s first premium compact SUV convertible, the hype and clamour could possibly go stratospheric.

The Hype Around the Evoque Convertible

Land Rover are fully aware of the expectation behind their new baby, and have seemingly pushed the boat out with a promotional video that shows testing on the car taking place underground.

The film, which you can see below, was created forty metres below the streets of London, UK with the first prototype of the new Range Rover Evoque Convertible being granted exclusive access to the 26-mile (42km) network of Crossrail tunnels to give engineers the opportunity to drive the disguised new Evoque Convertible with its roof lowered in complete privacy. 

As you can see, the short film begins with the convertible being lowered into the tunnel network by crane, before negotiating a range of obstacles through the 6.2 metre diameter tunnel; and the whole event was filmed to show off the new car with no one around to. Murray Dietsch, Director of Land Rover Programmes, was the man behind the plan, and said: “The tunnels are still under construction, so we had a unique opportunity to explore the vehicle’s all-terrain ability in unchartered territory.” 

Having also undergone some rigorous testing at the Nurburgring race track in Germany, going underground is nothing new to the Range Rover Evoque, as the 5-door version of the original car was driven through the first tunnel in the world to be bored beneath a major city; the Edge Hill Tunnel in Liverpool. 

What do we know so far about the Evoque Convertible?

As with all hypes and build-ups we are being drip-fed information as to what the full story and specification of the new Range Rover Evoque Convertible will be, but thanks to the undercover work of journalists at the likes of Auto Express and Car Wow we at least have some ideas.

We know that this exclusive new premium compact SUV Convertible will be built alongside the five door and coupe Evoque at Land Rover’s Halewood plant in the UK and that it will be on sale in 2016.

We know that this Evoque will be a drop-top with the Evoque convertible returning to Land Rover's roots of soft-top off roaders, and that is will be a lot more stylish and fashionable than your everyday 4 x 4.

And by studying the video closely, we can pick up a few more details:

  • At the moment, the folding fabric roof sits on the rear deck, butwhether or not it will stay there or fold down into somewhere is unclear.
  • It has a full four-seater layout
  • With a convertible, more electrics and motors are required for the roof system, so more rigidity will be required on the Evoque Convertible - meaning less fuel efficiency and heavier handling.
  • However, it will undoubtedly feature a member of Jaguar Land Rover’s new Ingenium engine family (such as the 148bhp 2.0-litre diesel two-wheel drive in the recently updated fixed-roof Evoque which returns 68mpg and 109g/km of CO2) so it will still be efficient when it comes to fuel and emissions.
  • It will feature a specially designed rollover protection system that won’t deploy if the car is involved in any off-roading.
  • Inside, it looks like the interior is pretty much the same as the existing Evoque, but with the roof folding down, passengers are likely to be a bit more squeezed in.

It looks like we will finally be able to see the car at the Frankfurt Motor Show from September 15th, so why not come back here to the Blog and check out what we find out.