Land Rover engineers are working on ultimate performance versions of the new Range Rover Sport and the Evoque, tipped to wear a new ‘RS’ badge.
The Range Rover Evoque RS is expected to be launched in international first, possibly even by the end of the year, but Range Rover Sport RS is also in the works and is currently undergoing performance testing at the Nürburgring in Germany.
Sources say that its 5.0-litre V8 supercharged engine will have at least the same 542bhp as the Jaguar XKR-S, XFR-S and XJR. That’s 39bhp more than the new Range Rover Sport’s supercharged V8. Land Rover will be looking for a 0-100kph time of 4.5sec.
The Range Rover Sport RS will have a unique front bumper design, with the foglights replaced by large air intakes. There will also be changes to the rear bumper and the lower skid plate.
Modifications to the suspension are expected to be confined mainly to software changes for the active anti-roll bars and air springs. Bigger wheels than the 21-inch units already fitted to the Sport are unlikely, but a more powerful braking system seems certain.
The Range Rover Sport RS is tipped to be launched next year, sometime after the Evoque RS is revealed. The Evoque RS will be powered by a 300bhp version of the Evoque’s current 2.0-litre turbo petrol engine.
The exterior styling is unlikely to be changed extensively for the Evoque RS, according to hints from design Chief Gerry McGovern. Larger wheels and extravagant arch and sill extensions will be ruled out in favour of subtler ways of making the RS model stand out from the rest of the range.