From £51,5509

The Range Rover starts at around £70k; the Sport begins at near £50k. That’s the distance between the most expensive Volkswagen Polo and an entry-level Touareg, which is another way of saying that £20,000 buys you a big difference in the car industry.

Here, the differences between stablemates are reduced to subtle questions of taste and status rather than quality and function. That makes the new Range Rover Sport feel worth its base price.

Be careful with option and colour choices

Nevertheless, the decision to ring-fence the SD4 in HSE trim seems destined to upset a slice of Land Rover’s buyer base, who would have preferred to twin the most economical engine with the superior HSE or Autobiography badges.

Both are currently the preserve of the SDV6, but as it delivers no more torque and only a 0.3sec improvement to 60mph, we’d recommend sticking with the cheaper version.

For now, 3.0-litre V6 diesels make up the meat of this segment, and JLR’s broadly measures up to the rest with a combined economy score of 38.7mpg for the SDV6 (we managed a decent 41.5mpg touring) and 194g/km of CO2.

Equipment is also on a par with the Sport’s competitors; sat-nav, cruise control, climate control, rear parking sensors and a DAB tuner are all supplied as standard.

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Residual values for the Range Rover Sport should also prove very competitive.

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