The new Freelander model features a host of upgrades and refinements
A new diesel engine, improved transmission, a smarter more upmarket interior and sharper exterior looks characterise the upgraded - and still expensive - 2011 Freelander 2. (Pricing for the crossover starts at $65,990).
Expect the facelift version to be quieter and more refined than its predecessor, the re-engineered 2.2-litre turbo diesel engine comes with two specifications, the 110kW TD4 and a more potent 140kW SD4 variant. The motor offers an impressive 420Nm of torque (20Nm more than the outgoing model) yet sacrifices nothing in terms of fuel economy or CO2 emissions. It is available with a six-speed automatic transmission.
Look hard enough and you’ll spy a new front bumper and grille, new alloy wheels and colour options which all help breath new life while new seat style finishes and instrumentation set the 2011 interior aside from the incumbent.
The new diesel engine is said to be more refined and efficient thanks to a new water-cooled turbo, new injectors and noise suppression methods, as well as revised internals.
Fuel consumption is 7.0L/100km and Co2 output is just 185 g/km, the eco improvements don’t compromise performance – at least not in the sportier SD4 – which accelerates to 100 km/h in 9.5 seconds (TD4-11.2 seconds) and a top speed of 190km/h (TD4 181km/h) is quoted.
Brake energy regeneration is among the effcientcy technology as well as the brand’s new ‘neutral control logic’ which reduces mechanical drag when the vehicle is stationary in lieu of a full stop / start system. While not actually selecting neutral, drive load is substantially reduced to save fuel and improve refinement.
At the high end of the option range, there's a new Premium Luxury Pack option with posh-sounding ‘Windsor Leather’ upholstery in Ebony, Almond, Ivory or Tan colours. The Pack includes electric seat plus premium carpet mats and covered centre stowage. Improving the hard to decipher outgoing examples, all 2011 Freelander 2s will benefit from a clear and contemporary new instrument pack too
The Freelander 2 provides the safest possible environment for occupants. The Command Driving Position provides good visibility of all four corners of the vehicle and narrow A-pillars ensure that forward visibility is not compromised. There are seven airbags: two curtain, two front, two thorax and a driver's knee bag as standard.
Don’t expect to see them off-road , but the new Freelander 2 will be hitting urban streets from April.