The new Land Rover Evoque SUV has a mirror that can become a real canvas. It's confuse.
At the end of last year, Land Rover announced the redesign of its Evoque. If it is not (yet) rechargeable hybrid or electric, the SUV intends to make a difference in several built-in technologies. Leading the way, we find this unusual interior rearview mirror capable of turning into a screen. We had the opportunity to drive several kilometers, on German roads, with this option dubbed ClearSight. The name is evocative: the purpose of this mirror / screen is to improve the visibility behind when driving.
To do this, Land Rover engineers put a camera in a small – and rather discreet – shark fin located at the rear of the roof. Once sitting comfortably in your seat, you can choose to use the mirror in a classic setting or constantly display what the camera is transmitting. Appreciable, the experience however confusing.
Real gain in visibility
In filing the appeal, Land Rover insists on the primary interest of ClearSight : Provides visibility at the rear when the view is obstructed (by a passenger and / or bulky object). But we can also use ClearSight all the time. First point to emphasize, the screen is HD and you can adjust the brightness and angle of the camera (to see higher or lower according to your preferences).
Another element that stands in your favor, the viewing angle is far more important than a conventional rear-view mirror. Instead of viewing through the back window, you get good visibility of everything behind it (90 degree viewing angle), including blind spots. It's a habit to take.
In addition, it will be necessary to do the quick eye-operated focusing when looking at the screen (ocular accommodation). There is this feeling of having a flash and without warning it may surprise you. We have not driven long enough to qualify this inconvenience in the long run. Maybe eventually disappear before disappearing completely once the eye has gotten used to this very placed screen (too?) Close to the face.
In any case, in addition to this slight visual defect, the ClearSight are real and we do not want to put the classic rearview mirror after tasting.
An elegant SUV with slightly whimsical acceleration
We are not going to summarize the Evoque to your ClearSight. Already because it takes the form of an SUV of captivating elegance. With its rounded lines, its diving ceiling, short muzzle and compact size (the length of a Ford Focus), the Evoque does not want to attack the look. He prefers to lure her with a slender figure. If some think it sounds a little too much like its predecessor, Land Rover responds by saying that the design was thought of as " the second album of a band "In short, we are talking about a reinvention without any betrayal.
Evoque materializes this notion of refinement. However, it is unfortunate to see non-digital instrumentation in lower finishes. This contrasts with the desire to introduce technology without problems without imposing it. It cuts especially with the pleasant 10-inch implantable screen dedicated to infotainment (the Evoque has nothing and has for example CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility) and the mix between tactile interfaces and physical buttons – as in the I-Pitch.
All versions – gasoline and diesel – are equipped with a light hybridization (depending on the actual hybrid engines). Specifically, the motor is coupled to a small 48V block to recover some kinetic energy during braking. This addition alleviates engine acceleration and reduces fuel consumption (6% reduction according to manufacturer's values). On paper, up to 17 km / h, the four cylinders do not purr. At the wheel, the Evoque behaves without displeasure, even if we liked a less capricious acceleration (dynamic mode included).
Cape off the road
During our test, Land Rover invited us to try the Evoque on a course out of the road, consisting of small workshops that simulate extreme conditions (coasts and very steep descents). While some parts seemed complicated or impossible to negotiate, the SUV, whose inspiration is urban, was very comfortable in the exercise. This is proof that it is under the pedal and that its braking ensures faultless stability even on a very steep incline.
To improve performance out of the road of its Evoke, the Land Rover still bets on cameras. With the Unobstructed viewing terrainyou can enjoy visibility on the ground and on the low sides. Placement of the sensors makes it possible, for example, to move more easily when the nose of the car is directed to the sky (often when climbing a hill) or to avoid certain traps (holes in the course). In short, this welcome device will probably remove some brakes while performing complex maneuvers (even in the city, finally).
Land Rover comes to the point of offering a super assistance that makes the car climb alone in certain situations. Yes, we are approaching the almost autonomous direction.
The Ranger Rover Evoque of 2019 is sold from € 40,000. You can book a test at this address.