Today, Land Rover whisked the covers off its Freelander 2 that benefits from a rather inconspicuous cosmetic redesign, a revised 2.2-litre turbo diesel engine available in two flavors and for the first time in the model’s history, a two-wheel drive version.
The exterior styling of the 2011 Freelander 2 has been updated with a redesigned front bumper assembly, a new and less pronounced front grille aligned with the hood, revised headlamps and tail lights, a full width tailgate appliqué and new 18- or 19-inch alloy wheel designs.
Inside, changes are limited to the revised instrument dials and four new seat styles with the option of a Premium Pack that also includes Windsor Leather upholstery, an 8/6 way electric seat, plus unique carpet mats and covered center stowage.
The EU5 compliant diesel is offered in two variants, the 150HP TD4 featuring a manual transmission and Stop/Start tech as standard or an automatic gearbox without Stop/Start as an option, and a 190HP SD4 version with an automatic transmission only.
Land Rover said the flagship 190-horsepower Freelander SD4 accelerates from standstill to 60mph (96km/h) in 8.7 seconds and has an increased top speed of 118mph (190km/h).
Following in the path of the Range Rover Evoque, the Freelander will be offered in a more frugal two-wheel drive variant – talk about watering down a brand whose watchword is all-wheel drive and off-road capabilities…
Called the Freelander 2 eD4, it comes with the 150HP 2.2-liter turbo diesel engine and according to the company, it will be the most efficient Land Rover ever produced, with a combined fuel consumption of 47.2mpg UK (equal to 39.2mpg US and 6.0lt/100km), and CO2 emissions of 158g/km.
“The new Freelander 2 eD4 moves Land Rover into the hugely popular and fiercely contested two wheel-drive SUV market,” said Land Rover managing director Phil Popham. “The European market for two-wheel drive SUVs represents 23 percent of the segment and we intend to compete strongly here.
“A 2WD option is just one way in which we are developing our vehicles’ efficiency whilst adding to the Land Rover range and expanding our appeal to a broader group of customers. We will continue to make the ‘world’s finest all-terrain vehicles’ for those customers who require 4WD but will also now offer an alternative,” Popham concluded.
The refreshed Freelander 2 is set to go on sale in the UK from the end of September, with other markets to follow suit.