Sunday, September 4, 2011

Scoop: Range Rover Evoque in India

A junction on Paud Road in Pune leads to a very interesting place that is heaven for car spotters, the road to the hill on which the Automobile Research Association of India(ARAI) is situated. Every new car and motorcycle needs to undergo homologation at ARAI before it can begin commercial sales in India and thus, spotting cars at 8 AM in the morning, just as the ARAI gates open for testing is what many automobile enthusiasts like us indulge in.

Recently, an automobile enthusiast named Akshay Vaidya caught a camouflaged Range Rover Evoque at the ARAI-Paud Road junction in Pune. While the SUV was camouflaged, the very distinct shape of the SUV was a dead giveaway that the SUV caught on camera was indeed the Range Rover Evoque Crossover SUV. There has been a lot of talk about Tata Motors planning to launch this model at the end of this year and the ARAI homologation runs have only further added credence to this belief. Also read: 2011 Range Rover Evoque Spotted in India :ICB
Now we have further information coming in with a November launch for the Evoque confirmed.  Initially, the Range Rover Evoque Crossover will be brought into India through the CBU route, straight from Hailwood, UK.  A while later, in the middle of 2012, the Evoque Crossover SUV will be assembled in India through CKD kits at Tata Motors’-Mercedez Benz’s erstwhile production facility at Chikli, off Pune. Also, bookings for the Evoque are being accepted by some Jaguar-Land Rover dealers in India.

Initially the prices of the Range Rover Evoque are expected to be quite steep at INR 50 Lakhs for the base diesel model, going all the way up to around INR 63 Lakhs for the top end, three door 240 Bhp petrol variant. CKD assembly of the Evoque Crososver SUV is expected to help Tata owned Jaguar-Land Rover price the Evoque Crossover SUV at a competitive sub 40 Lakh Rupees. At this price, the Evoque could give top end variants of the BMW X3 Crossover and the upcoming Audi Q3 Crossover a tough fight. See more on pricing in India here: Range Rover Evoque in India from December?
The Range Rover Evoque SUV is expected to be powered by a 2.2 Liter common rail turbo diesel engine good for 190 Bhp of peak power. The Crossover SUV will offer a  mix of car like handling and decent off road ability that the Land Rover brand has always been known for in a futuristically styled package, that will grab plenty of attention. Surprisingly, the test mule features a three door layout even though the Evoque is available in 5 door guise internationally which means that the Evoque could indeed be available in 3 door guise in India too.


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