• Aug 4th 2010 at 9:59AM
  • 25
2011 Land Rover Freelander 2 – Click above for high-res image gallery

Put down the pitchforks, purists. While it's true that Land Rover has just announced a brand-spanking new take on its LR2/Freelander 2 that forgoes the company's go-anywhere all-wheel drive in favor of a more efficient front-wheel drive setup, the drivetrain is only available on a single diesel model. What's more, Land Rover officials tell Autoblog that we won't be seeing the FWD model on our shores (we don't get the diesel anyway). The trucklets should hit dealer lots in the UK toward the end of September, offering a more efficient take on high-riding luxury with a 2.2-liter turbocharged diesel engine with around 150 horsepower. When bolted to a manual transmission, the engine turns out 38 mpg US. On second thought, maybe we could do without those rear tires kicking. If you're a Statesider and like the idea of a front-drive Landie, there's still a chance you'll be able to get your wish – the forthcoming Evoque crossover is also slated to be available so-equipped, although it isn't immediately clear if such models will be available here.

Land Rover will also let UK buyers bolt the thrifty little oil burner into an all-wheel drive model, though doing so carries a penalty of about 5 mpg. If you find yourself living in the Old Empire and want a little more power out of your pint-size Rover, you can opt up for a 190 horsepower gasoline engine, too, though it's worth pointing out that you can only get that mill with an automatic gearbox.

Even if North America doesn't receive the diesel or front drive, we will get the 2011 model's modestly updated look and upgraded interior. You'll have to look closely to see the changes, but there's a new bumper cap with revamped fog lamps, a revised grille finish, as well as 'improved' headlights and new taillights. Perhaps most noticeable are the Freelander 2's new alloy wheel patterns.

The baby Rover's interior has also received a badly needed update, but it only includes reworked gauges, seats, carpets and revised stowage, well shy of the interior rehabbing that the rest of the LR lineup received for 2010. Hit the jump for a look at the press release and try to spot the exterior changes in our high-res gallery below.

[Source: Land Rover]

Show full PR text

* New upgraded diesel engine available with either 150PS or 190PS
* Stronger performance and improved efficiency throughout the range
* The 2.2-litre 150PS TD4 manual has improved by 8 per cent to 165g/km with a corresponding improvement in fuel economy of 9 per cent to 45.6mpg
* The 2.2-litre 150PS TD4 and 190 PS SD4 automatics see a 14 per cent improvement in CO2 emissions to 185g/km and a matching fuel economy improvement delivering 40.4mpg
* Revised exterior with new front bumper assembly plus three new colour schemes and new alloy wheel options
* Interior tweaks with new instrument dials and Premium Pack option
* Customers offered more choice with addition of 2WD eD4 derivatives
* Frugal eD4 model capable of 47.2mpg and 158g/km CO2
* Improved intelligent Stop/Start technology as standard on manual transmission

The 2011 Freelander 2 model range, on sale in the UK from the end of September 2010, benefits from a new 2.2-litre diesel engine available with either 150PS or 190PS outputs, a new look exterior plus interior alterations including new instrument dials and a new Premium Pack option.

Land Rover's new turbo diesel engine is available in the 4WD TD4 150PS model featuring a manual transmission and intelligent Stop/Start technology as standard (an automatic gearbox without Stop/Start is available as a cost option), or the new SD4 model delivering 190PS (available in automatic transmission only).

This new engine is quieter, more efficient and both derivatives have 20Nm more torque than the outgoing engine. This means the 2011 Freelander 2 offers improved engine response and more mid-range strength for towing. CO2 emissions have been significantly reduced to 165g/km and 185g/km respectively with corresponding fuel economy benefits.

However, despite reductions in consumption and emissions, there has been no compromise in performance. The flagship 190PS Freelander SD4 accelerates from rest to 60mph in 8.7 seconds with an increased top speed of 118mph. The Freelander 150PS TD4 manual and automatic versions match the performance of their predecessors.

As well as being upgraded from EU4 to EU5, both versions have a new variable geometry turbocharger and have been extensively re-calibrated to deliver new levels of power, meet emissions regulations and reduce CO2 emissions. They are fitted with a catalysed diesel particulate filter as standard and are now compatible with 10 per cent biodiesel rather than 5 per cent.

As an addition to the Freelander 2 range, Land Rover will also offer customers a 2WD derivative, available in the UK from January 2011. This will be called the Freelander 2 eD4 and it will be the most efficient Land Rover ever produced, with fuel consumption of 47.2mpg combined, and CO2 emissions of just 158g/km.

"The new Freelander 2 eD4 moves Land Rover into the hugely popular and fiercely contested two wheel-drive SUV market," said Land Rover managing director Phil Popham. "The European market for two-wheel drive SUVs represents 23 percent of the segment and we intend to compete strongly here.
"A 2WD option is just one way in which we are developing our vehicles' efficiency whilst adding to the Land Rover range and expanding our appeal to a broader group of customers. We will continue to make the 'world's finest all-terrain vehicles' for those customers who require 4WD but will also now offer an alternative."

This groundbreaking Freelander 2 eD4 is powered by the new 2.2-litre turbo diesel engine, delivering 150PS. It is only available with a six-speed manual transmission featuring Stop/Start technology as standard.

The exterior of the latest Freelander 2 gets a new look for 2011. Marked out by a new front bumper assembly incorporating new front fog lap bezels, a new front grille finish, improved headlights and tail lamps, new full width tailgate appliqué and new 18- or 19-inch alloy wheel styles. There are three new colour schemes for 2011 Kosrae Green, Baltic Blue and Fuji White.

Inside the cabin, Land Rover's design team have revised the instrument dials, and there are four new seat styles with the option of a Premium Pack that includes Windsor Leather upholstery, an 8/6 way electric seat, plus premium carpet mats and covered centre stowage.

The 4WD TD4 and SD4 models are on sale in the UK from the end of September.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      They should make them much more dependable vehicles - until now Freelanders have the worse reliability record of all SUVs with catastrophic lose of resale value. Pity!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Stop making excuses for Land Rover Autoblog, Jeep gets bashed for having FWD cars, Land Rover should get it just as bad. But go ahead and keep knocking on the Compass for being ugly though.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Oh yeah, the Evoque is supposed to have a FWD version too!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Land Rover needs a replacement for this thing, it's getting old.
      • 5 Years Ago
      To bad it's not coming to America, chicks would dig the Mall Rover.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Land Rover Compass.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Now let's just wait for the FWD Bimmer to keep the joke growing. What next?
      • 5 Years Ago
      I had the displeasure of driving one of these as a rental while my car was in the shop at the dealer. I seriously don't know why LR bothers with this SUV. It's extremely underpowered, revs up like crazy, and the rear and trunk space is non-existent.

      The Volvo S40 is tiny as it is (ironically that's the car we were trading it), can't image how it could be turned into an SUV.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Not "Rover".

      The funny thing is, this would be quite a capable vehicle, if only it could compete with the likes of the CR-V. That said, the current monstrosity of a CR-V would do well to keep up with the original CR-V.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Is this thing based off the Escape? And if so, does it share the same suspension?
        • 5 Years Ago
        You rock; thanks!
        • 5 Years Ago
        The Freelander/LR2 is based on Ford's EUCD platform, which is used on most other Volvo models, and the European Ford Mondeo sedan.

        It bears no relation to the Ford Escape, which has its own platform that was originally based on the Mazda 626 sedan.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks a little like an Escape's chubby yet cute twin sister.

      I've always kinda liked these when I see them out on the road.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The sad reality is the vast majority of SUVs are developed road divas piloted by the suburban sect that want to be 'cooler' than a wagon/van driver. Their biggest traction foe being a rain storm. So a FWD Rover, while sacrilegious, will attract enough of these people who do not care/know about the off-roading history.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Land Rover and front wheel should never be in the same sentence.

      But that might be just me.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The good news is that 99.99% of people will be completely unaware that a FWD version exists, particularly since most trim levels will retain the AWD setup, so I think it won't really damage the LR image too much.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree! This is a joke. This will be the biggest poser-mobile ever.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ Alex, like your "public" misspelling.

        I get the CAFE regulations (and the Euro equivalent) for the MPGs...

        But if you are a consumer, and MPGs are your thing, why would you spring for a front-wheel drive CUV/SUV? ...Why not just go for one of the many wagon alternatives? It just doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. I would think that even the 150hp Diesel engine could power a 4WD version and return pretty good MPGs, why not offer that instead?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Sweet, sweet brand dilution. This is like Bad Religion doing Lady Gaga covers.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Apparently nothing is sacred.

        ....However if and when Ferrari announces a FWD hatchback of some sort, I would suggest making peace with your maker or start building that underground bunker.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Its called reality. As unfortunate a reality as that may be, LR has to meet some very strict emissions standards. A stable full of V8 'utes with full time 4x4 is not going to work to meet those standards. Additionally, LR is in the business of making money. This is no more a sacrilege than Porsche producing the Cayenne. Enthusiasts hate it but the pubic as a whole embraces it. If this is what LR needs to do to meet the emissions standards and produce the revenue to keep the LR3 and Range Rover on top of their game, then i'm all for it.
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