2010 Paris Auto Show Preview: 2012 Range Rover Evoque

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The details on the 2012 Range Rover Evoque are out, with more to come at the 2010 Paris Auto Show debut. Best of all, we have plenty of info on the U.S. version of the smallest Range Rover, including a ballpark starting price.

At "around $45,000" the Evoque won't be the most affordable compact crossover on the block, but judging by the high-res photography, it will be one of the most premium. Rich leather, attractive metals, and a modern yet conservative design combine to make a handsome workspace for the driver. Sales start in Fall of 2011.

An optional panoramic glass roof should help the small cabin feel a bit larger, though the lack of closeups of rear-seat legroom make us a bit nervous for the third and fourth passengers.

The powertrain is also attractive, and given that it's already known to be using a Ford EcoBoost powertrain, may give us a peek into the fortchoming Fiesta ST. With 2.0-liters of displacement, turbocharging, direct injection and 240 horsepower on tap, the little Evoque should be able to get out of its own way at the least--and the Fiesta should be downright brilliant. Despite being the first Range Rover available in front-wheel drive, the Evoque is also available with the very impressive Terrain Response system and all-wheel drive.

MagneRide magneto-rheological adaptive dampers help the Evoque meet sporty or rough conditions without as much compromise as standard suspension tech. Electric Assist Power Steering (EPAS) is claimed to boost the sporty feel at the wheel, though our experience with EPAS puts us on the fence until we feel it for ourselves.

Three "design themes" or trim levels will be available: Pure, Prestige, and Dynamic. Pure is the base-level vehicle, Prestige adds unique exterior elements like standard unique 19-inch and optional 20-inch wheels plus a bounty of leather inside. Dynamic buyers will get a "bolder" exterior with unique bumpers, side sills, grille, tailpipes, and 19- or 20-inch wheels, plus available contrasting roof and spoiler colors. The interior is a "premium sports" treatment with "splashes of bright contrast color," no doubt the work of Posh Spice's fashion consultation.

Hit page two for the official details.

[Land Rover]

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