2019 Range Rover Sport HSE P400e
Welcome to the Upper Crust
By David Colman
Special Correspondent to THE AUTO CHANNEL
Rover's foray into what they term "the forefront of sustainable innovation" is a toe dipping exercise. The P400e combines a 2.0 liter, 4 cylinder supercharged gas engine with a 105kW electric motor. The gas motor produces 294hp. When combined with the electric energy source, the P400e makes 398hp, which is enough to propel it from zero to 60MPH in 6.3 seconds. For an SUV as complex and all-terrain competent as this Rover, 0-60 in 6.3 is highly commendable. But if you seek to run on electric power alone, a full charge of the 48 volt battery will take you just 24 miles before a recharge is required. That's 4 miles less than the range of the $595 Segway Kick Scooter I saw recently at Costco. Of course, if you have a short daily commute - with recharge facilities at either end - the P400e might be just the ticket. It can be recharged in just 2.75 hours with a dedicated wall box (32 amp AC charger). If you just plug it into a wall socket, a full charge requires 14 hours.
The first 24 miles of our fully charged P400e stewardship were majestically silent. The 5,255 pound Rover glided from point to point like a great white shark - unseen, unheard, and unearthly. In fact, to promote safer e-travel, the P400e's owner's handbook even describes how to activate a noise generator designed to alert pedestrians to your unannounced advent. Once the ethereal electric phase ran out of juice, we spent the rest of our week enjoying this Range Rover Sport for everything else it does so well. Topping that list is its remarkable ability to ensconce you in ultra luxury. Everything about this vehicle, inside and out, constitutes a work of art. There's no unfinished business here. The level of attention to detail in the instrument panel, the seat construction, the engine compartment, and the rear storage areas exists in a world of its own. The byword here is solidity. Almost every component, from the trunk cover tie downs to the tailored luggage bag for the e-plug's extension cord, is constructed from handsome materials designed to last for decades.
The test P400e included a $4,000 Driver Assist Pack that added adaptive cruise control with steering assist. Experimentation with this innovation proved what an asset such a driving aid can be. On a long, boring run up US 101, we let the Rover do most of the steering, braking and accelerating while we simply oversaw its action while maintaining a light touch on the steering wheel rim. Ever vigilant, the Rover immediately noticed if we removed our hand entirely. Doing so caused a warning light to flash conspicuously reminding us to maintain hand contact when steering assist is engaged.
To put it quite simply, the Range Rover Sport HSE P400e is one of the few vehicles available today capable of doing what it does, and doing so in supreme comfort. At a base price of $79,000 and an all-in cost of $93,200, this Rangie is nothing short of a royal British travel bargain.
2019 Range Rover Sport HSE P400e
ENGINE: 2.0 liter inline 4 supercharged + 105kW electric motor
FUEL CONSUMPTION: N/A
PRICE AS TESTED: $93,200
HYPES: Elegant, Plush, Fast
GRIPES: Not Sold on the Touch Pro Duo
STAR RATING: 10 Stars out of 10