Land Rover has announced it will launch its first-ever plug-in hybrid model for 2019 when it adds an electric drivetrain option to its Range Rover Sport SUV, a precursor to the brand’s promise each of its models will have a hybrid powertrain option starting in 2020.
The new variant will be dubbed the Range Rover Sport P400e and get its power from a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor, good for a total 398 hp and 472 lb-ft of torque. Like other Range Rover Sport trims, the PHEV model will get standard 4WD with Terrain Response and an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Those figures will put the new model near the middle of the Range Rover Sport lineup, just above the strongest V6 model (380 hp) and the entry-level V8 trim with its 518 hp. The 13.1-kWh battery is good for a promised 50 km of electric driving before the engine fires up and the truck carries on as a conventional hybrid.
The P400e won’t arrive here until next summer, but in the nearer term the Range Rover Sport gets refreshed styling and new technology features for 2018.
Styling changes include a new grille and headlights, while the brand’s latest infotainment system, dubbed Touch Pro Duo, brings its two 10-inch screens to the truck’s centre stack.
Other new tech tricks include a sunroof blind that can be activated using hand gestures and a tow assist system that lets the driver reverse a trailer using the Terrain Response controller, letting the truck make the necessary steering inputs.
The updated 2018 Range Rover Sport will arrive in dealer showrooms early next year.