2011 Land Rover LR2

The 2011 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show has wrapped up and Land Rover has walked away with two more accolades — one of which we found to be a little surprising. Since the past couple of weeks have been dominated by the Range Rover Evoque, it was good to see the LR2 and the Range Rover get some recognition late in the model year. Yes, you read that right; the nearly forgotten Land Rover LR2 received the “Best Premium Compact SUV” award. The Range Rover itself received the “Best Premium Large SUV” award. 

Hottest Vehicle Awards – Top honors — winners of the 2011 SEMA Hottest Vehicle Award — went to the Chevrolet Camaro for Hottest Car, the Fiat 500 for Hottest Sport-Compact, the Ford F-Series for Hottest Truck, and the Jeep Wrangler for Hottest 4×4-SUV. These models represent the vehicles most often chosen by SEMA Show exhibitors to feature in their booths. 

The SEMA Show

If you are not familiar with the event, the SEMA Show is an industry-only gathering that brings together over 100,000 automotive aftermarket industry professionals each year. The show highlights new aftermarket products and services and centers around a wide array of custom show vehicles. These show vehicles — which can range from motorcycles up to heavy-duty trucks — are custom showcases designed to highlight the creator’s products, techniques, or services.

Given the massive nature of the automotive aftermarket industry, attendees have a chance to inspect everything from automotive waxes to full-on 4×4 expedition vehicles and high-performance street cars. Major show sections include collision repair & refinishing, mobile electronics & technology, wheel accessories, the global tire expo, powersports & utility vehicles, tools & equipment, restoration, trucks/SUVs, racing & performance, business services, hot rods, restyling & car care, and OEM.

The Land Rover LR2

The Land Rover LR2 has been overshadowed by the all-new 2012 Range Rover Evoque.

We’ve talked about the LR2 as being the “forgotten Land Rover” in the past. We sometimes refer to the LR2 as being nearly forgotten for two reason. The first is that Land Rover retailers manage to move only a handful of the vehicles each month. So few, in fact, Land Rover doesn’t even mention the LR2 in its monthly sales press release. The second reason is that the LR2 has been overshadowed by the all-new 2012 Range Rover Evoque.

In fact, the MSRP on a high-specification LR2 bumps into entry-level Evoque territory. Therefore, the Evoque, already well-equipped even upon introduction, gives the LR2 an extremely tough in-house competitor at that price point. The LR2, while updated for 2011, is aging. Most significantly, the LR2’s interior is not nearly as refined as the Evoque, it’s not as powerful or efficient, and it lacks the cachet conveyed by the Range Rover brand. Arguably, the LR2’s only saving grace is its more “Land Rover’ish” appearance, which certainly appeals to some buyers. 

One final factor is that the Land Rover LR2 comes up against not only the Range Rover Evoque, but also against vehicles such as the Toyota RAV4. A fully-loaded RAV4 tops out at about $37,000.00 compared to the 2011 LR2’s entry-level price of $36,550.00, giving the LR2 stiff competition at both ends of its price range.

 2011 Land Rover LR2

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