Range Rover Evoque Life Cycle Assessment

Land Rover vehicles are not exactly known for their stellar MPG figures or their environmental compatibility, and rightfully so. For example, our 2006 LR3 tops out at around 17.5 MPG highway and scored 3 out of 10 on EPA air pollution tests and 2 out of 10 on the greenhouse gas ratings table.  While the company’s very visible support of humanitarian and conservation efforts has helped offset these negative attributes, the company is now actively working towards a sustainable future. This work centers on the development and use of a Life Cycle Assessment program that was put into full action with the 2012 Range Rover Evoque.

Typically, emissions ratings and fuel economy figures are the two factors that get the most attention when it comes to environmental sustainability. However, automakers are now developing “design to disposal” sustainability programs to help them engineer and manufacture vehicles that meet the needs of today’s eco-conscious buyers. In brief, these programs help analyse, quantify, and make actionable short-term and long-term sustainability goals.

Life Cycle Assessment

Land Rover’s Life Cycle Assessment program will now be conducted on every new Land Rover and Range Rover vehicle from this point forward. As mentioned above, the program looks at all aspects of the vehicle starting with design and ending with disposal. More details on this program can be found on the official Range Rover Evoque Life Cycle Assessment website and in the video below.

CO2 Offsetting

Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions occur during every stage of a vehicle’s life cycle. As part of Land Rover’s sustainability efforts, every ton of CO2 produced during the manufacturing process is offset by carbon reduction projects elsewhere. Additionally, in 10 participating countries throughout Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, the first 45,000 miles of CO2 emissions are also offset. Owners can buy additional CO2 offsets through the company’s CO2 Offset Program

Lightweight Engineering 

Most Land Rover vehicles are heavy. For example, a five-seat 2012 Range Rover Sport HSE weighs in at a hefty 5,540 pounds. Compare that to a 2012 GMC Yukon Denali at 5,688 pounds; a vehicle that is 14 inches longer, 6.5 inches taller, and seats up to eight passengers. 

Fittingly, a significant portion of Land Rover’s strategy when it came to the Range Rover Evoque was weight reduction. Weight savings have a direct environmental impact over the life cycle of the vehicle, so materials were chosen to ensure that sustainable goals were met. For example, steel was replaced by aluminum and polymers were possible. While alternative materials are typically less efficient up front, over the lifetime of the vehicle the lighter components allow for reduced fuel consumption and lower CO2 emissions.  

Recycled Materials

The Range Rover Evoque makes use of approximately 35 pounds of recycled materials. Recycled materials allow a smaller carbon footprint when compared to the use of virgin materials and have an added benefit of diverting mass from the waste stream that ends up in landfills. Some of the Evoque’s interior moldings, exterior moldings, engine bay components, and interior fabrics are constructed from recycled materials. 

Recyclable materials comes into play not only in the beginning of a vehicle’s life, but also at the end. Therefore, the Life Cycle Assessment has taken the Evoque all the way through disposal. Land Rover states that 85% of the Evoque can be recycled, which is — depending on who you ask — fairly typical. For example, Volvo states that each of its vehicles are 85% recyclable and 95% recoverable.

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December 23, 2011

RoverGuide

Articles, Buying & Ownership, Land Rover Models, Range Rover Evoque

Conservation, Range Rover Evoque, Sustainability

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