What lies beneath: Velar is a deal with a difference
The Velar is stylish but it lacks a little substance
I'm having a €3 McDonald's tea-and-muffin deal as I begin writing about this week's car. Parked outside, and drawing admiring glances I might add, is the Range Rover Velar luxury SUV.
I've been driving it a lot; sitting in it for hours waiting, pitting it against the elements in all sorts of conditions over several days. So I just felt like a cup of tea and something sweet. As with food, sometimes you need to go back to basics with cars to gain a perspective.
And you need perspective with this 'fourth Range Rover' five-seater with concept looks that make it so different from the rest.
It is based largely (but not entirely) on the underpinnings of the Jaguar F-PACE and counts among its rivals luxury SUVs ranging from the Volvo XC60 to the BMW X5.
I think it is a car whose looks you take to, or you don't (regardless of whether you can afford it or not). It is not all about looks, of course, but if you like them it helps a lot of other stuff to fall favourably into line.
The Velar fills the buying gap between the highly successful smaller Evoque and the larger, energetic Range Rover Sport. So its logical starting price is in the lower €60,000s. But the real kick-off point for many will be €70,000+ by the time they get the bits and pieces they want. And I think that's where you need to closely scrutinise what you're getting for your money.
Put it this way: it's not a €3 tea-and-muffin deal. It's a Range Rover premium menu. So let's take a run through the 'à-la-car-te' (I'll get my coat...).
I'm giving it top marks for that wonderful design (the handles slide out when you press the key fob to open). Yes, if I had the money I would feel good being seen in a car like this.