The beast from Range Rover now cares about the environment, thanks to hybrid systems in place

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Range Rover has refreshed the Velar for the 2021 model. While the changes on the outside are limited, the cabin comes with some new additions. The biggest update is under the hood as 2021 Velar now comes with mild and plug-in hybrid technology. The plug-in hybrid model offers up to 33 miles of electric range. With this, now the complete Range Rover lineup is electrified. The company hasn’t been at the forefront of electrification, but it doesn’t lag either. So, will the new Velar’s efficient, plug-in model become the best-selling model in the lineup?

What Powers The 2021 Range Rover Velar?

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Exterior
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The 2021 Range Rover Velar is offered with multiple new engine options from JLR’s new ‘Ingenium’ range. The engines are available with a mild-hybrid technology and one iteration is offered with a plug-in hybrid system.

The drivetrains equipped with the mild-hybrid technology make use of a Belt-Integrated Starter Generator, which essentially helps with regenerative braking.

The energy harvested is stored in a 48-Volts lithium-ion battery. These mild-hybrid models also feature a stop/start system.

How Are The Engines Spec’d?

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Exterior
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The 2021 Velar comes with a 3.0-liter, six-cylinder diesel engine that dishes out 296 horses and 479 pound-feet of torque. It features the mild-hybrid technology as standard. This straight-six engine is said to be 15.4 pounds lighter than the V-6 it replaces. The diesel Velar takes 6.1 seconds to gallop to 60 mph from a standstill and delivers up to 38.2 mph. A smaller 2.0-liter, four-cylinder diesel is also offered on the Velar. This engine makes 201 ponies and returns up to 44.9 mpg, thanks to the mild-hybrid setup.

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Exterior
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Two gasoline engines, called the P340 and P400, are offered in the 2021 Velar. These are different states of tune of the 3.0-liter, six-cylinder engine. In the P340 iteration, the engine makes 335 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque.

In the P400, it makes 395 horses and 406 pound-feet of twist. Both of them come with a mild-hybrid system as standard and are offered with an electric supercharger supported by a twin-scroll turbocharger.

P340 takes just six seconds to sprint to 60 mph from a standstill, whereas P400 takes 5.2 seconds. P400 also returns up to 28.8 miles for every one gallon of gas consumed.

Range Rover Velar Plug-in Hybrid

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Exterior
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The most-efficient engine in the lineup comes in the form of the other 2.0-liter, four-cylinder gas engine version churns out 398 ponies and 472 pound-feet of torque. The power outputs come courtesy of the internal combustion engine and a 141-horsepower electric motor.

With the engine and motor working in tandem, the Range Rover Velar plug-in sprints to 60 mph from a standstill in just 5.1 seconds.

The electric motor is powered by a 17.1kWh lithium-ion battery that’s located under the cargo floor. With this system in place, the Velar offers 33 miles of pure electric range. This is identical to the Jaguar F-Pace plug-in hybrid. On average, a daily U.K. commute is 18 miles, thus enabling owners to run the Velar everyday on battery only. It takes one hour and 40 minutes for the battery to recuperate from 0 to 80-percent using a 7kW wall box domestic charger, and 30 minutes to recharge to 80-percent using a 32 kW fast-charging DC network. Range Rover has mentioned that the Velar plug-in’s fuel economy is rated at 130.2 mpg.

All the engine options are offered with an all-wheel-drive configuration and an eight-speed automatic gearbox as standard.

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Interior
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Range Rover Velar D300 Range Rover Velar P340 Range Rover Velar P400 Range Rover Velar P400e
Engine 3.0-liter, six-cylinder  3.0-liter, six-cylinder  3.0-liter, six-cylinder  2.0-liter, four-cylinder with a 105 kW electric motor
Horsepower 296 Horsepower 335 Horsepower 395 Horsepower 398 Horsepower
Torque (lb-ft) 479 Pound-feet 354 Pound-feet 406 Pound-feet  472 Pound-feet
Transmission Eight-speed Automatic Eight-speed Automatic Eight-speed Automatic Eight-speed Automatic
0-60 mph 6.1 s  6.0 s 5.2 s 5.1 s

What’s Different On The Outside?

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Exterior
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The automaker has introduced a new ‘Range Rover Velar Edition’ that comes with a few distinct differentiations. It is based on the R-Dynamic SE trims and is offered in an exclusive color - Lantau Bronze metallic paint – along with new exterior colors for the 2021 model – Hakuba Silver, Portofino Blue, Santorini Black, and Eiger Grey. Apart from this, there is a black contrast roof and 20-inch black wheels.

On the outside, slim LED headlights grace the face.

LED Matrix headlights are also available as optional. The black honeycomb mesh grille looks sporty.

The fin-type foglamp housing, which has fully-functional air inlets, further accentuates the aggressiveness on the face. As is common with many other models, “Range Rover” lettering is present on the tip of the hood. Range Rover has offered two new wheel designs this time around for the 19-inch and 21-inch set. The large wheels and tires fit the wheel wells quite well.

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Exterior
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The side is rather plain-Jane with no real sharp cuts and creases, but the black stripe on the fender and the front door breaks the monotony. The A-, B-, C-, and D- pillars are blackened out, thus giving a floating roof effect. Step to the rear and the Velar looks exceptionally good. The slim LED taillights extend to the sides and the detailing within have a ‘half-eye-open’ feel to it, which makes it look aggressive. The Range Rover branding between the taillights is subtle. The bumper is blacked out for most of the section and the skid plate showcases the Range Rover DNA. Overall, the short top and the broad hips make the derriere look smart.

What’s New On The Inside?

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Step into the driver’s seat and you’ll be welcomed to a rather pleasant-looking cabin.

Behind the chunky, three-spoke steering wheel is a 12.3-inch Interactive Driver Display. It looks classy and throws a lot of driver-related information. The steering wheel itself is new and comes features buttons for the Advanced Driver Assistance System. It has integrated smart buttons and is capable of receiving over-the-air updates as well.

The biggest change on the inside comes in the form of the touchscreens.

There are two 10-inch touchscreens on the center console that mark the introduction of the Pivi Infotainment System.

The system also integrates Terrain Response and Terrain Response 2 control, thus eliminating the traditional dial and hard buttons. Range Rover has mentioned that this is done to emphasize “the visually reductive approach”, which, in other words, is “form over function”. Dials and buttons for basic controls are always welcome as accessing the touchscreen to control simple functions while driving is not feasible. Also, a tactile new Drive Selector replaces the rotary gear selector.

2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Interior
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Other notable features include:

  • Head-up Display
  • Meridian 17- and 23-speaker audio systems
  • Sustainable fabric such as Dapple Grey upholstery with Suede inserts
  • Ambient LED lighting with a choice of 10 different color options
  • Several 12V sockets and USB ports at the front and back
  • Increased storage space and cubby holes
  • 40:20:40 split rear seats
  • 26.4 cubic-feet cargo space
  • Powered gesture tailgate
2021 Range Rover Velar Plug-In Hybrid Interior
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Some other new add-ons include Active Road Noise Cancellation technology that constantly monitors vibrations from the road surface and calculates the opposite phase sound wave needed to remove the noise heard by the occupants. A second-generation wearable Activity Key is also offered and it can be used to access and start the SUV. It replaces the conventional key fob. A cabin air filtration system is also in place to reduce levels of harmful particulates, pollen, and even odors. Range Rover says it can be activated via a ‘Purify’ option on the touchscreen.

Final Thoughts

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The new engine options will make a whole lot of difference, especially in terms of efficiency, thanks to the mild-hybrid technology. The plug-in hybrid model is powerful as well as efficient and will most likely be the best-selling trim for this year’s model. The 2021 Range Rover Velar starts from £46,110, which is $58,750 as per the current exchange rates. Although they have different personalities, the Range Rover Velar and the Jaguar F-Pace have a lot of similarities and come with similar updates for the 2021 model. Which one do you think will sell well? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.

Sidd Dhimaan
Sidd Dhimaan
Senior Editor, Truck Expert, EV Expert -
Sidd joined the team in 2017 as an intern and in less than a year he earned a full-time position as an associate editor and junior automotive expert. Fast forward to today, and he is currently serving as a senior editor, pickup truck expert, and EV expert.  Read full bio
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