- Credit: Sunday Times Driving, Ultimate Rentals & Autocar

As the dreaded words 'Christmas' and 'Winter' are occurring it's not long before the words 'Sports Utility Vehicle' and '4x4' hit your news feeds and magazine front covers, so it's high tide to pick your favorite of some very Essex cars to cruise along the slightly damp A3, or if your a country bumpkin the cobbled roads of the cotsworlds. The cars in question are the new Volvo XC90, the Range Rover Autobiography, the new Landrover Discovery and the most Essex of them all, the Porsche Cayenne. This article is to determine which one is the fastest (obviously), which one will show of your hunter wellies the most and which one will make you look the most like a farming version of Cruella De Vil.

To begin, i'll start with the surprisingly stylish Volvo XC90, Volvo has been on a roll currently with it's design and the XC90 is no exception. This car starts from a very un-volvo like £52,235 which people are surprisingly expecting of, they are currently popping up all over the UK. You might think then, it's just a range rover with 'Landrover' crossed out and 'Volvo' written over the top in crayon, but its's definitely not. The volvo is not only cheaper than a range rover but has the same quality, it might not have the same luxury and off-road capability's as a range rover but you wouldn't take your XC90 anywhere near the footpaths of the Scottish highlands, it may be a nice car to travel down to your aunt's house in, but keep it strictly to the motorways and main roads, leave the rough stuff to the good old Landrovers. Despite the fact the XC90 is a pointless off-road vehicle, it does actually make sense. The XC90 obviously isn't the car you would buy if you were a farmer in the fields of the cotsworlds, but if you were a mother with kids who loved a spot of rugby in staffordshire, it's best suited for you. The XC90's standard engine isn't very quick, being a 2.0L diesel that is. But move up the range to the R-Design model, you may still get a 2.0L, but a 2.0L T6 Petrol engine producing up to 315bhp will be under your Swedish metal bonnet. These specs in a volvo may seem exciting, but don't get too carried away. If your looking for speed in your 4x4, I wouldn't look at the XC90, look at the Range Rover Autobiography.

Credit: Autocar

Credit: Autocar

Talking of the Range Rover Autobiography, lets move onto that one. Range Rover are extremely popular in Britain, you don't need to work out why, but don't be put off if your in the US or other parts of Europe, you don't need green hunter wellies as a requirement to own one. The Range Rover comes with either a 3.0L V6 Diesel engine, a 4.4L V8 Diesel engine or if non of them were enough a 5.0L V8 Petrol engine. This all then sounds mad compared to the Volvo, but it does make sense. If you've seen reviews on any Range Rover, which you would have because your reading this off of DriveTribe which is owned by Jeremy Clarkson, who has multiple range rovers, you will know that big engines are a requirement to pull the luxurious barge that is a Range Rover, as well, the standard farming middle-aged bloke does like the thirsty sound of a V8. Pointing the finger at the V8, the 5.0L Petrol one to be particular produces up to 349bhp and does 0-60mph in 6.4 seconds which isn't bad for a 2.3 ton yacht carrying a human Gerbil. The Range Rover is the most luxurious of them all, with very comfy leather on top of the massive electrically everything seats it does feel like your sitting in Prince Philip's seat, but the right way up of course.

Credit: Autocar

Credit: Autocar

Now for the ugliest witch of them all, the new Landrover Discovery. To look at the back of this car, you need to be physically blind holding a shotgun for when the showroom salesman decides to describe it to you. The front looks quite normal but as you edge your way around the side and up to the back of the car, you notice the car is having a stroke. It is debatable to think what kind of glue JLR must of been sniffing when they drew up the designs for this car as the previous Discoverys were quite boxy and normal, but this one looks as if it belongs in the trash bin of Landrover along with the Freelander and the discovery two, apart from the exterior needing a bit of slight work with a sledge hammer the inside of the new Discovery is of good quality, good plastics and nice leather make up for it's price tag, the price being £47,745 but not it's retina-burning looks. For the starting model, you can expect a 2.0L Diesel engine which does 0-60mph in 8.3 seconds and beholds an 8-speed automatic gearbox, this small engine is overall quite boring and needs to be bigger for a car that weighs over two tons. To solve this issue you can move up to the HSE model which has a 3.0L petrol or diesel engine which is more likely to make you forget about it's exterior and all the cheshire mum's watching you when driving it.

Credit: Autocar

Credit: Autocar

Now for the Cheshire cat that is the Porsche Cayenne. Now, i know what your thinking, 'what about the Macan?' well it has to be said that the only reason you would buy one is that you can't afford a Cayenne. Not that you'd buy one anyway, "you'd buy a range rover" (-Jeremy Clarkson), obviously, being British i'd immediately turn to the Range Rover as my go to SUV, but the cayenne is a definite rival. The standard cayenne model comes with a very un-Porsche like 2.9L petrol, which still seems quite big, but if somebody sad the words 'two point...' when talking about there Porsche's engine, you'd chuck your starbucks on the floor and smack them with your leopard print flip-flops. But you can still get a 4.0L petrol engine on the Turbo model and even a plug-in hybrid with a small petrol engine if your daughters a screaming Swedish 16 year-old. Overall, save the stereotyping and buy a Range Rover.

Credit: PerformanceDrive.com

Credit: PerformanceDrive.com

So, I'll just go right ahead and say it, buy a range rover. They are the most off-road capable, the most-comfy, the most luxurious and easily the best to drive. You can bet your right ear that if they invented flying cars with a 3 piece sofa on-board that people would still buy Range Rovers. And as Landrover runs out of money, there's not a better time to donate eighty grand to your local British charity, the beloved soles at JLR.

Thanks, Josh

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