Friday, 23 September 2011

Evoque in detail

You can't have failed to spot the new Range Rover Evoque - it's everywhere; countless road tests have been extolling its virtues both as a design icon and a global all-terrain goliath, while every other billboard in London (and, in all probability, across the country) shows off its handsome silhouette.
Much focus has been placed on the draughting in of Victoria Beckham as a design consultant, but I think that gimmick sells short quite how revolutionary the Evoque's design is, and this can be summed up by two key design attributes:

1) The Americanisation of the profile. Look at how narrow and tapered the side windows are, like a Chrysler 300C estate. That's not a lot of window for such a sizeable machine, but it's somehow cohesive and appropriate.
2) The eschewing of the traditional cab-rearward approach. From time immemorial, cars have been designed with the majority of stuff going on at the back - this was initially a natural function of having the engine ahead of the driver, but it's a tradition that's carried through from the long-snouted speedsters of the twenties and thirties, through the Lotus Seven-alikes over the decades, across seventies tuning culture of jacking up the rear end, and beyond. But the Evoque turns this all around: look at that front wheelarch. It's approximately the same girth as the rear one, but see how it arcs straight up through the wing and into the bonnet line? The rear arch, in contrast, is almost lost in a barren sea of steel, not even meeting the swage line. It's a very interesting treatment and, in addition to those cheeky tail-lights and the bejewelled snout, it ain't half bad. The nose-heavy shift suggests a willingness to leap up mountains in a single bound.

...and if the new Defender concept is anything to go by, we should be heartily celebrating the Evoque as an aesthetically accomplished counterpoint to the godawful hideousness of the Land Rover-branded alternative.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

They both look as though a large part of the "design process" consisted of an elephant sitting on them for a long period of time.