Range Rover Evoque (2015-2018) Review & Prices
The Range Rover Evoque is a posh SUV that's also fantastically capable off-road. Considering a used version? This buying guide will tell you all you need to know
What's not so good
Find out more about the Range Rover Evoque (2015-2018)
Land Rover might have made its name building ludicrously capable off roaders, but it has also been at the forefront of the 4x4 vehicle’s switch to practical family duties and luxurious reputation with its large SUV, the Range Rover. In 2010 it revealed the much smaller and more affordable Range Rover Evoque, which was the most road-focused model the brand had yet sold.
It might be easy to dismiss as a ‘fashion statement’ – thanks largely to Victoria Beckham’s claimed involvement – but this is a small SUV that provides a sleek and stylish alternative to the likes of the Mercedes-Benz GLC and BMW X3.
If you want to spice up your life with a classy, premium family SUV but are concerned they’ll cost too much, early Evoques are now surprisingly affordable. Despite being more than a decade old, the design remains fresh to this day, supported by the fact the second generation model revealed in 2018 doesn’t look all that different.
If you're looking for a classy SUV with great on- and off-road performance, used Evoques are now surprisingly affordable.
Perhaps even more impressive is the interior, which has a minimalist design that has also stood the test of time. The same can’t be said about the infotainment system, though, which was not particularly well-regarded at the time and, as a result, feels incredibly dated now.
One area where you can’t complain is the driving experience. The Evoque is comfortable on the road while still being surprisingly good fun in corners, handling more like a large car than a small SUV. And despite its fancy school run styling, this is a hugely capable off-roader, borrowing plenty of clever technology from more rugged Land Rover models.
Throughout its time on sale, the Evoque went through a series of tweaks and changes, including the introduction of a convertible version in 2015, while the range received some minor updates in 2016 and new engines in 2017.
Early Evoques were available with a sportier 240hp petrol engine on top-spec trims, as well as a 2.2-litre diesel engine with 150hp and 190hp outputs. Initially only offered with four-wheel drive, two-wheel drive versions came in 2012. ly.
A minor update for 2016 saw the introduction of a new diesel engine. With 180hp it felt quite sprightly but also promised impressive official fuel economy of 68mpg and low CO2 emissions of 109g/km, making it an attractive prospect on the used market.
In 2017, the 240hp petrol engine was replaced with an all-new unit with the same power output, but with better official fuel economy of almost 40mpg. A new 290hp petrol engine joined it in the line-up, alongside a 290hp diesel.
At launch the Evoque was available with three trim levels called Pure, Prestige and Dynamic. Pure models open the range with black detailing on the exterior and 18-inch alloy wheels, while inside there’s an 8.0-inch infotainment display, climate control and a high-quality 11-speaker Meridien sound system.
Prestige models increase the alloy wheel sizes to 19 inches and add a full leather interior, sat nav, rear-view camera, front parking sensors and automatic windscreen wipers and headlights.
Top-spec Dynamic cars get some unique styling choices, 20-inch alloy wheels, leather steering wheel and adaptive suspension as standard. This was a pricey option on Prestige versions, so could be worth looking out for.
Pure cars had an optional Tech pack that added sat nav, parking sensors and some other appealing convenience features, while the Lux pack found on some Prestige and Dynamic cars added a dual-view infotainment display, upgraded sound system, panoramic glass roof and more.
The 2016 update moved to a five-trim structure called SE, SE Tech, HSE Dynamic, HSE Dynamic Lux and Autobiography. Standard equipment improved to include LED headlights and a new seat design complemented by fresh interior colour schemes. A new infotainment system improved on what came before, but was still not the best in the business, while an optional rear-seat entertainment system was also added.
Despite its SUV styling, there are shades of sports car about the cabin, thanks to its high window line and tall centre console. Better still, there’s plenty of headroom in the front and the seating position is excellent, giving you a great view to the front that’s hampered only by a sizeable blind spot created by the thick windscreen pillar.
This generation of Evoque was offered as a three-door coupe and a more practical five-door. If you regularly carry passengers in the back, it’s best to avoid the three-door. Yes, it looks a little more stylish than the five-door, but the steeply sloping roofline restricts the headroom and makes clambering in and out a real chore. Even in five-door models, rear headroom and kneeroom are tighter than in alternative models.
You’ll have no trouble fitting a large bottle of water in the front doors or the huge glovebox, and all models come with a pair of useful cupholders on the centre console, but the Evoque isn’t overly blessed with cubbies. As you would probably expect, the larger five-door model is much more practical, and fitting a child seat is simple.
The Evoque can carry a reasonable 420 litres of luggage with five seats in place; and, when you fold down the rear seats, you get 1,445 litres to play with in the five-door model, and 1350 in the coupe. That makes it roomier than the boot in a conventional family car, but both the BMW X3 and the Mercedes GLC – with identical 550-litre and 1,600-litre respective capacities – are much more spacious.
That said, you’ll still be able to fit a pram, a set of golf clubs or a weekend’s worth of family luggage in the boot of the Evoque. There are also some useful tie-down hooks and space to hang your shopping bags; and, if you need room for something bigger, the rear seats fold down in a 60:40 split using buttons beside the rear headrests.
Thanks to its high driving position, the Evoque gives you a good view over the traffic ahead – helping you spot pedestrians and other obstructions easily – but it feels more like a small family car to drive than a tall SUV. It turns quickly and sharply without too much body roll, grips well through tight corners and does a good job of ironing out bumps around town.
Even with the largest 20-inch alloy wheels fitted, the Evoque cruises comfortably over rutted and poorly maintained roads. Admittedly, it isn’t quite as relaxing as the Mercedes GLC, but the Evoque’s supple suspension does a better job of softening jarring bumps than the stiffer setup in the BMW X3.
Unfortunately, the Range Rover’s tiny rear windows make it a real pain to manoeuvre. Parking sensors are fitted as standard, but they feel overly cautious at times – beeping piercingly when you still have acres of room behind.
If you’re keen to take your stylish new SUV off road, all models with an automatic gearbox and all-wheel drive versions come with at least the option of an All-Terrain Progress Control system. Effectively, this electronic trickery is an off-road cruise control and means you don’t have to touch the pedals to safely get down slippery slopes. In this respect, the Evoque is superb – it’s by far the best compact SUV off-road and will carve through mud, gravel and even snow with impressive ease.
The Range Rover Evoque is fairly reliable, but there are some common problems to look out for. It’s also worth bearing in mind that this is a premium vehicle, so repairs can be fairly pricey.
The most common problems in the Evoque are electrical, so go through the cabin and make sure all of the buttons work and do what they’re supposed to. Any hint of something not being right could be cause for alarm.
Some 2.0-litre diesel engines have problems with diesel particulate filters, so be sure to ask questions if there are any warning lights on the dash. This can largely be fixed with newer items from Land Rover, so factor this cost in if required.
Walk away if you spot a ‘traction reduced’ message while out on the test drive, as faults with the 4x4 system can be very expensive to fix.
Finally, check the underside of the car for any damage. This is more capable than most of its alternatives off road, so owners might have been tempted to venture off the beaten track. This is not necessarily an issue, but carelessness could have caused long term damage.
Recalls are a common occurrence in the car industry, and happen when the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency or a manufacturer itself spots a fault that needs fixing. There are a huge range of reasons why this happens, from serious issues such as airbags failing, to minor software glitches.
Your local dealership will be able to inform you if there are any outstanding recalls for your vehicle. This handy guide explains everything you need to know about recalls.
The Range Rover Evoque has faced a number of recalls during its time on sale. The biggest affected over 37,000 vehicles built between March 2015 and April 2016, and related to a potential fuel leak.
More than 15,000 vehicles were detected as potentially failing to achieve the required levels of CO2 emissions. Hardware and software changes in vehicles built between March 2015 and June 2018 remedied this.
A recall of almost 10,000 cars related to a potential short circuit in the engine wiring, which had the ability to cause the engine to cut out in extreme cases. The affected cars were built between July and October 2015.
Other recalls affecting smaller numbers of cars include an incorrectly fitted bolt in the suspension, airbags that would fail to deploy and improperly fitted steering racks.
Safety and security
When the Range Rover Evoque was safety tested by Euro NCAP in 2011 it received a five-out-of-five rating. Tests have become stricter since then, so it is not comparable to full marks from modern cars, but it’s good to know it scores well compared with similarly aged alternatives.
It scored particularly well in the adult occupant and safety assist tests, receiving 86% for both. Its pedestrian safety score was less impressive though, at just 41%, because the edge of the bonnet and windscreen offered poor protection in the event of a pedestrian’s head striking them.
Even early cars have some decent driver assistance equipment, including a blind spot monitor, automated parallel parking, and a surround camera system that includes a reversing camera.
Improvements in 2016 added lane-keeping assist, autonomous emergency braking, and driver drowsiness warnings. Meanwhile 2018 saw the debut of camera technology that would make the bonnet ‘invisible’, allowing the driver to see what is underneath the car in off-road scenarios.
There are few alternatives that have the combination of off-road abilities and premium badge appeal to match the Evoque, but there are plenty of posh SUVs that would make tempting family cars.
The BMW X3 is a great place to start when considering alternatives to the Evoque. It doesn’t quite have the wow factor styling of the Range Rover, but it’s arguably better to drive. The Audi Q3 and bigger Q5 have similar appeal to the BMW, while the Volvo XC60 is more practical but not quite as fancy.
If you want something a bit more sporty, the Porsche Macan makes a great case for itself, though those shopping at the lower end of the Evoque’s budget will find them too expensive.