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2014 Range Rover Sport arrives with James Bond behind the wheel


2014 Range Rover Sport arrives with James Bond behind the wheelFor 2014, the Range Rover Sport follows the track set forth by its big brother - the Range Rover. Switching to an all-aluminum unibody, shedding 800 lbs., provides the fastest, most fuel efficient Sport yet, and it debuted last night during a glitzy premier in New York City, being driven by James Bond himself.

Daniel Craig piloted the machine down a closed street in downtown New York, right onto the event floor, where he promptly got out (to ear-popping cheers and flashbulbs), straightened his collar, and left – without saying a word – leaving the Range Rover Sport to absorb all the glory.

The 2013 Range Rover, which went on sale late last year, boasted similar weight-loss figures to the new Sport, taking the driving dynamics and capability to new heights. Visually, the Sport appears a blur between the larger Range Rover and the smaller Evoque; the front-end screams Range whereas the rear portrays Evoque. It seems to have lost a little identity, and while still looking good, perhaps misses the sportiness its nametag suggests.

Under the hood, its business as usual, but the lightweight aluminum body ensures speeds akin to a Jaguar rather than Land Rover. The supercharged V-8 still delivers 510 hp but sprints to 60 mph in 5.0 seconds, close to a second faster than the outgoing model. The V-6, conversely, reduces horsepower from 375 to 340, but despite that, 0-60 occurs 0.3 seconds faster at 6.9 seconds.

While exact fuel economy numbers have not been provided, expect both engines – especially the V-6 – to show sizeable improvements, somewhere in the range of 24 percent. Adding to the quest for mpgs, the Sport’s hydraulic power steering has been replaced by a variable assisted electric method, and a Start Stop system comes standard. Additionally, the SUV’s new sleek shape cuts 8-percent off the drag figures, complimenting the aggressive weight shedding.

Unsurprisingly, the 2014 Range Rover Sport will be loaded with the latest technologies, such as Terrain Response 2, Dynamic Response and (a Land Rover first) Torque Vectoring. It’ll also sport optional third row seating, although by Land Rover’s own admission, that option should be considered only for “temporary” use. It does, however, not breach upon cargo space, which shows improvement over the outgoing model.

Pricing starts at $63,495 for the V-6 SE model, $68,495 for the V-6 HSE, $79,995 for the V-8 Supercharged and $93,295 for the fully loaded V-8 Autobiography model. While Range Rovers are not “cheap” by nature, they do offer unsurpassed driving capabilities justifying its cost. The 2014 Range Rover Sport appears to be no exception at stirring without shaking.