As soon as the wedgy Range Rover Evoque debuted in 2011, speculation started running rampant as to how much the new compact model would influence other models in the line. While the 2013 Range Rover certainly shows some Evoque influences, its overall shape and style remain decidedly conservative, adhering as much to its predecessor's style as to its new little brother's. But the Range Rover Sport, designed to appeal to a younger, more aggressive customer, had a little more latitude in adopting a bolder style, and based on these latest spy shots, it appears the new Range Rover Sport will have a closer resemblance to the Evoque than its larger, more formal sibling.
The nose is similar to the 2013 Range Rover's, with the grille and front headlights raked back considerably more than those of the previous model. And although wrapped by camo vinyl, it appears it will also have the "cat-eye" shaped headlight housings and turn signals like on the new Range Rover. It also adopts the faux vents on the front door panel, a vestigial styling cue from the older models with their front fender-mounted vents.
The Evoque influence is most apparent in the tapering roofline and greenhouse, which slopes toward the rear of the vehicle, ending in a more steeply raked rear glass than on the Range Rover, but not quite as short or angled as the Evoque's. The rear end of this tester was positively caked in snow, so we didn't get a clear look at the rear taillights. From the illumination we can see peering through the icy layer, the new Range Rover Sport looks to have retained a more vertical taillight design, with bumper-mounted rear driving lights that could also double as directional signals.
The new Range Rover Sport will certainly adopt the new eight-speed automatic of its big brother, but could see the debut of the supercharged 3.0-liter V-6 in the Range Rover line, possibly replacing the naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V-8. However, the top-trim HSE Supercharged model is expected to retain its 5.0-liter supercharged V-8, good for at least 510 hp and 461 lb-ft of torque. There has been some speculation that one or more Land Rover models could eventually get a diesel for the U.S. market, and the Range Rover Sport has been offered with a 3.0-liter turbodiesel for several years.
Most significant, the new Range Rover Sport is expected to employ the 2013 Range Rover's aluminum construction for a massive weight loss in the neighborhood of 500 or more pounds, improving performance and fuel economy.