Land Rover LR4 HSE Wins Petersen's 2011 4x4 of the Year award
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Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Land Rover LR4 HSE was crowned off-road champion last week after successfully completing Petersens 4-Wheel & Off-Road magazine’s grueling 1,000-mile trial to find the 2011 4x4 of the year. The competition evaluates each vehicles suspension, engine, transmission, and transfer case along with the style and creature comforts provided by each vehicle, though the most important judging criterion is how well the vehicle performs off-road. This year's competitors included the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Ford F-150 Raptor SVT, Lexus GX 460 Premium and the Land Rover LR4 HSE and - If you’re looking for a vehicle with some serious trailer towing power - you might just want to add the Land Rover LR4 HSE to your Christmas wish list.

"The Land Rover LR4 HSE pulled ahead of the fierce competition in this year's test and came out an undisputed champion," said Rick Pewe, editor-in-chief of Petersen's 4-Wheel & Off-Road. "The off-road capability of the LR4 was remarkable, and the on-road manners were superb. It impressed every judge in the test." As one judge noted, "Surprising, nay, shocking capabilities both on-road and off. And comfortable too! Like a true English gentleman, it doesn't get ruffled."

"At Land Rover we invest a tremendous amount of engineering resources and automotive technology into our vehicles to ensure we remain the most capable luxury vehicles in the world, and that capability includes being able to tackle the most severe off-road conditions imaginable," said Land Rover North America Executive Vice President Chris Marchand. "We appreciate the experts at Petersen's 4-Wheel & Off-Road magazine taking these vehicles to their limits and reporting back that the Land Rover LR4 is in fact, in their words, an undisputed champion."

To be eligible to compete, a vehicle must be all-new or have improvements that make it perform significantly different from the previous model year. Vehicles must also be available for sale before January 15 of the model year, have a production run of at least 2,500 units, and be equipped with a two-speed transfer case. The complete test results and vehicle evaluations for the 2011 4x4 of the Year competition will appear in the February 2011 issue, available December 7, 2010.

For additional ‘tow assist” and “trailer stability assist” graphics and information check out the slideshowFor the Motortrends comparison of the Land Rover LR4, Lexus GX 460 and Mercedes GL450 check out the video.

About the LR4

The LR4 boasts a new 375bhp 5.0L LR-V8 direct injection  engine – with an impressive 375 lb/ft torque and a towing capability of 7716 lbs (3500kg) – coupled to an electronically controlled 6-speed automatic transmission. The vehicle can accelerate from  0-60 mph in a time of 7.5 seconds (0-100km/h in 7.6 seconds), has a maximum speed of 121 mph (195kph) and delivers an EPA rated 12 mpg city and 17 mph highway. The LR4 has a base MSRP of $48,100 which includes the $850 destination and delivery charge.

Off-Road capability

The Standard ground clearance of 7.3 inches (185 mm) can be increased to 9.4 inches (240mm) in Off-road mode. With EAS in Off-Road mode the maximum wading depth is 27.6 inches (700 mm).

Towing with the LR4

Five digital cameras provide a near 360-degree view via the dashboard touch-screen monitor. The cameras, which support easier parking, towing and off-road maneuvering, power on when the vehicle is started, and have options for selecting and zooming to assist with both parking and towing.

The ‘tow assist’ function (selected from the touch screen menu) helps perform accurate towing maneuvers.  The wide fields of views on the side cameras give a clear view of the reversing trailer:  the images are electronically manipulated to provide an undistorted view, with guide lines overlaid on the rear camera image to illustrate both the vehicle and trailer’s trajectory. Specific characteristics such as type of trailer, number of axles and width guides can be fed into the system to enhance the system outputs.

Trailer Stability Assist provides an additional towing aid by monitoring and correcting trailer oscillations caused by uninvited steering movements and vehicle swing in response to trailer behavior.  In these circumstances, the system can initiate engine torque reduction and braking interventions to bring the towing back under control.


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