There’s something reassuring about looking at your January calendar and seeing “Range Rover Td6” penciled in for the end of month. C’mon Old Man Winter, bring it on. Give me your worst. I’ll be flipping you the middle digit while my other hand warms on the soft leather of the RR’s heated steering wheel. From my imperious and sybaritic perch I will pass wind in your general direction. Me and Rangie shall go through you like tinfoil through a dog.
Oh wait… this 2016 Range Rover Td6 is wearing 275/40×22 Continental all-season-tires. In January? Say it isn’t so! Tsk tsk.
Having taken part in enough snowy tire events to know that all-season rubber compromises braking distances by 25-30 percent when compared to winter tires (with a commensurate deficiency in lateral grip), I’m not about to test these principles in a 2,215 kg sport brute with an as-tested sticker of $127,490.
Inappropriate tire issues aside, this “entry level” diesel-powered Range Rover Td6 is nothing but good news, starting with its $108,490 MSRP that undercuts the 510 hp 5.0L supercharged V8 gasoline model by $8,000. Additionally, with projected fuel economy of 10.5 L/100 km city and 8.0 highway (against 17.2/12.5 for the V-8) you’ll be filling up less often and emitting considerably less CO2 – 182 g/km versus 299 g/km. Hence, despite being the size of a garden shed and having similar aerodynamic properties, this diesel-fed Range Rover has green cred and will leave more cash in your wallet.
My week of mostly highway commuting netted a stellar 9.0 L/100 km, which is a better showing than the Golf R I drove the previous week (10.1 L/100 km).
New for 2016 in North America, this turbocharged diesel 3.0L V6 (that traces its roots back to Land Rover’s Ford era) suits the regal ute to a tee. Yes, the Td6’s modest power rating of 254 horses looks a little weak on paper, but don’t be dissuaded. As with all turbo diesel power plants, the torque does the talkin’, and here we have 440 lb-ft on board from 1,750 rpm.
Unlike the supercharged 5.0L V8 which admitted storms with unbridled enthusiasm, the Td6 (mated to the ubiquitous ZF eight-speed manumatic) moves the Rangie along in a more relaxed manner. But never does it feel slow. That fat wallop of torque is like the Hand of God on your tailgate, moving you ahead with unrelenting urge. The Td6 is remarkably quiet too – more so than rival diesel V6s from BMW, Benz and Porsche. At idle there’s a hint of some clatter, but once underway you’d be hard pressed to know there’s a diesel under the long bonnet. Tow ratings for the diesel and gas Range Rovers are the same at 3,500 kilograms – the $900 Tow pack required.
On the Range: By The Numbers: Land Rover Range Rover TD6 Diesels
Td6 emissions have been cleaned up for North America via the de rigueur urea exhaust treatment, with a DEF (Diesel Exhaust Fluid) reservoir that’s good for 16,000 kilometers.
The Td6 is also available in the Range Rover Sport for 2016.