It’s not often you get to say ‘I’m so glad we drove through a snowstorm’. But we were in an LR4 High Spec Luxury. In one hour, we passed six cars in the ditch while out the city late last month. This is a fun automobile to pilot. You can deactivate the dynamic stability control but on the blustery day in question I opted for a real-time practicum in interventionist safety technologies.
Forgive the cliché but the drive through the storm really was like watching a movie. While all around people were losing their miles, our journey felt utterly pleasurable, aided by a litany of sensory bonuses. Heated leather seating, a heated leather and wood steering wheel, concert acoustics for a stereo with — bless them — a CD player all increased the feeling that we were separate from the ditch bound. The music became a soundtrack. Speaking of which, the LR4’s perspicacious climate control heats up the space magically in seconds, de-fogging windows at the speed of luxury.
The LR4 has drive modes for terrains rougher than you’ll ever find in the city but it’s worth noodling around them. You get several different feeling vehicles for the (albeit hefty) price of one. So it can go pretty much anywhere except about a third of downtown streets during rush hour. The Vision Assist package is a worthwhile upgrade to keep you from scraping it in tight quarters.
Yes, it’s very big for urban drivers — well over 2m wide and almost 5m long with a turning circle of 37.5 feet. So to shrink it (and milk the most from that marvelous but thirsty V6 engine, which emits and gentlemanly 340HP and 332 lb-ft of torque but also prefers drinking from the top shelf) I recommend using the paddles to shift up and down the eight gears. I don’t even have 6 friends to fill all the seats so was happy to find the CommandShift almost turn this bus into more of car and, courtesy of that supercharged engine, a somewhat sporty one at that.
Big in the city, maybe, but out in the country, it’s just Goldilocks right. The off-road clearance is 310mm, for easy transport out of ditches in case you end up in one. And with the back two rows of seats down, there’s over 2,500 cubic feet of space. It was enough to transport the winter’s load of firewood in a single trip from the local mountain man’s barn. All while my leather-backed bottom enjoyed a gentle warming.
On the whole, it was a good thing we only had the LR4 for a week. I was beginning to feel like I deserved it.
MSRP starting from:
$72,990 (excludes $1,575 Freight and $100 Tax)
20” Forged Alloy Wheel, Style 516 – $3,000
Wood Leather Steering Wheel – $425
Vision Assist Package – $2,100
Roof Rails, Extended – $350
Retractable Cargo Cover – $150
Grand Black Laquer Wood – $500
Destination & Delivery – $1,575
Green Tax – $100
Total Price as Tested – $81,190