Range Rover Autobiography 4.2L V8 Supercharged – Review

We had the Range Rover Autobiography. It is the supercharged 4.2L V8 mated to a 6sp Tiptronic transmission and permanent 4WD. It doesn’t come cheap with a manufacturer’s list price of some $212,000 odd.

Range Rover Autobiography
Range Rover Autobiography

What’s it’s Purpose

Super Luxurious 4WD for those who like to park on the kerb. Sadly they rarely see any dirt at all.

What’s it Like

In a word…Superb! You want for very little, having almost every conceivable luxury item you could want. The Autobiography adds to the already considerable high levels of luxury with leather, more leather and yet more leather. In terms of how it drives both on and off road it is really no different to the TDi Vogue we tested last year.

What’s Good & Not so Good

What’s Good?

  • Levels of Luxury
  • Supercharged V8 Power
  • Off road ability

What’s not so Good?

  • Fuel Economy
  • No automatic Boot Closer (I know picky)
  • The fact that I don’t own one

Drive Notes

Outside

Externally the Autobiography is differentiated by new 20-inch diamond-turned twin-seven-spoke alloy wheels. Both the TDV8 and Supercharged petrol derivatives feature the Diamond Mesh grille and side vents, black and silver badging and stainless steel detailing on brake and accelerator pedals.

Inside, Comfort & Features

Internally the Autobiography offers even higher levels of luxury and refinement over the Vogue, combined with the ability to personalise your Range Rover Vogue to suit your own sense of taste and style. The first impact when opening the door on an Autobiography will be the smell of leather. Land Rover has never offered a Range Rover Vogue with this amount, or quality, of leather. The facia, doors, seats and centre console are all clad from top to bottom in leather. Even the floor mats are bound with leather!A new seat style has been introduced that incorporates contrast stitching and semi-aniline Autobiography leather.

The semi-aniline is the softest grade of leather available. The softness is achieved by applying the minimum amount of treatment which necessitates selection of only the very best hides. The semi-aniline Autobiography leather is used to cover the complete seat, front and back.The Autobiography derivative will also have a full leather facia in a soft grain finish – again with stitching detail.

The leather will cover the facia topper, the glove box lids, the area around the centre vents, behind the steering wheel and even the driver’s knee airbag cover.In going a stage further, the Autobiography derivative also has full leather covering of the front and rear door casings including the door bins. The soft grain used on the door casings and leather facia provides a truly luxurious interior that is a match for any automotive interior.

In addition to the copious amounts of leather the Range Rover Autobiography also features Acoustic and “Climate” glass, on both the windscreen and front side windows. The Acoustic glass has the effect of reducing cabin noise, whilst the Climate glass reflects infrared rays to reduce the effect of heat soak and sunlight. This in turn reduces the air conditioning load.

Safety

In addition to all the features on Range Rover Vogue TDV8 Luxury the Range Rover Autobiography comes with Leather covered driver’s knee airbag and Front passenger knee bolster

Performance. Engine, Transmission & Suspension etc

The Autobiography comes with the 4.2L Supercharged V8 motor producing 291KwW @ 5750rpm and a very handy 550Nm of torque. This is the most powerful engine Land Rover has produced and it is an absolute gem. The thing you notice is just how effortless the driving is. Other than the motor the rest of the Transmission, suspension etc is exactly the same as the Vogue and as described in the review on the TDi

Off Road & Towing

The Range Rover is unquestionably the best vehicle based 4WD on the planet. The combination of prodigious power and torque, permanent 4wd with Land Rover’s brilliant terrain response system, unbelievable wheel articulation from the air suspension provides an unmatched feeling of confidence. Add to this capability a towing capacity of 3500kg and you can quickly see why the Range Rover is such a favourite with the horse and boat groups.

Summary

The Range Rover Autobiography Supercharged is one hell of 4WD. There are more powerful SUV’s that perform better on road. But there is nothing that comes close to the combination of luxury, on and off road performance and practicality. Perhaps the Autobiography TDi may be a better choice depending on what you’re intending to use it for.

Like all cars there are a couple of things we would like to improve. It is incongruous that with everything luxury feature it has there is not an automatic boot closer. Also the supercharged motor has a huge thirst.

The other major problem with it is that we don’t have one permanently in the garage. Would i buy one if i could….Absolutely. Throw a bull bar on it and take it to Cape York. I would probably buy the TDi version but i would love one and unlike most owners i would use it as it is meant to be used.

I must ring Land Rover and see if they have a spare one……..

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About Anthony Hood 174 Articles
Anthony Hood – Freelance Contributor Anthony is an avid motoring and photography enthusiast. His interests lie in performance cars, street rods, drag racing, 4WDriving and camping, burn out competitions, circuit racing and hill climbs. He is our resident hoon with heaps of experience. Married with two children and a qualified diesel mechanic and fitter, he has worked in the industry since leaving school over 16 years ago. His sheds are full of race cars and engines in various stages of working order. Anthony doesn’t get caught up in the marketing hype of the automotive industry and is fairly blunt. He brings a very laid back approach to reviewing vehicles.

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