All-New Range Rover Sport Somehow Still Good at Off-Roading … for Some Reason

Photo By: Land Rover

When Land Rover sent me the embargoed press package for the Range Rover Sport, I clicked through and I looked at the exterior images first. Then I scrolled through the press release. And I rolled my eyes at things like “Stormer Handling Pack,” which combines Dynamic Response Pro, All-Wheel Steering, Electronic Active Differential with Torque Vectoring by Braking and Configurable Programs into one overly complicated sounding system.

Looking further, I saw more phrases that further furrowed my brow. Things like, “Sculpted seating,” “Cabin Air Purification Pro” and “13.1-inch curved touchscreen for award-winning Pivi Pro3 infotainment.”

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Believing I was prepared to craft a quick-take story, I opened a Google doc. I thought I was ready to wonder in writing whether Land Rover had completely fallen off and forgotten its roots. Before I began to type, though, I opened up one last folder — a folder called “Spillway Challenge.” The images from which you’ll see in the gallery above and the video is embedded below.

Land Rover had race-car driver Jessica Hawkins pilot a Range Rover Sport up a spillway … for some reason. The stunt must have been absolutely nerve racking, even if the video is a bit anticlimactic. Still, I’m quite impressed.

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Nevertheless, my initial gut reaction was wrong; Land Rover still does make off-road capable vehicles. The video underscores that the very posh RR Sport still can do off-road-y things — despite no one using them off-road at all, ever.

Was I too crass, jumping to the conclusion that the brand’s offerings don’t look particularly off-road-y? I mean, look at the Range Rover Sport. It is gorgeous. I love the slab-sided styling. And the proportions are perfect. The cabin, too, looks fit for royalty or, more realistically, a Real Housewife.

The powertrains are quite compelling as well. As for propulsion, there’s everything from a pure-electric variant (coming in 2024) to a plug-in hybrid with 434 horsepower, and a 523-hp twin-turbo V8 model. What’s not to love?

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

Photo by Land Rover

This is usually the part in a news post that I’d wonder if the car I’m reporting on is worthy of overlanding. That’s absurd to do here because, well, no one on earth will ever overland in this generation of Range Rover Sport. It’s a silly idea to even consider.

That said, if you do choose a new-gen Range Rover Sport as your overlanding rig, bring it to an Overland Expo, show me, and I’ll buy you beer for the rest of your life. Not that you need the charity, though. If you can afford a Range Rover Sport as well as afford to mistreat it off road, you can afford a lifetime of beer. Still, though, the Pabst is on me.

Photo by Brett Willhelm

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