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Land Rover's New Lineup Has Some of the World's Fastest SUVs

The 2020 Range Rover Velar SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition is expected to go for around $110,000

Odds are it will take you longer to say “Land Rover Range Rover Velar SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition” than it takes for the new SUV to hit 60.

The folks at the British automaker have a propensity for long-winded model names. Luckily for buyers, the Land Rover lineup also happens to include some of the market’s fastest and most powerful SUVs. The Velar SVA Dynamic, as company folks are inclined to call it, is a perfect example with its 550 horsepower supercharged V-8 engine capable of launching to 60 in a mere 4.3 seconds.

Parent Land Rover has been on something of a tear lately, taking advantage of the massive shift from conventional passenger cars to SUVs and crossovers. It has created what U.S. CEO Joe Eberhardt describes as a “three-pillar strategy,” starting with familiar models like the Discovery. A rugged off-road pillar will be anchored by the reborn Defender coming later this year. Then there’s the high-luxury pillar filled by various Range Rover models, such as the newly updated Evoque, and niche variants like the Velar SVA Dynamic.

The Velar itself joined the brand’s lineup for the 2018 model-year. Reviewers have called it one of the most handsome SUVs on the road, with cats-eye headlamps framing its bold grille. Velar’s fastback silhouette is topped by a steeply raked roofline. And there’s plenty of glass, including a panoramic top, from which you can watch the world roll by. Inside, it may not be quite as plush as the flagship Range Rover -- and yes, Land Rover names can get confusing – but Velar’s cabin is about the most modern among the members of this British SUV family, with plenty of high-line features, including heated and cooled leather seats and a sophisticated infotainment system.

The “base” version of Velar is no slouch, with a 247-horsepower gas engine or 180 diesel option. Buyers can step up to a 380-horsepower supercharged V-6 able to move the utility vehicle from 0 to 60 in a mere 5.3 seconds.

But for those wanting the ultimate level of performance, the Land Rover Range Rover Velar SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition bumps that up to 550 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque using the brand’s most powerful and sophisticated powertrain. Power is channeled through a performance-tuned all-wheel-drive system that can direct as much as 100% of its power to the back wheels.

The SVA Dynamic doesn’t stop with that big V-8, of course. Land Rover adds a number of other performance, appearance and creature comfort features to complete the package.

Visually, that starts with the bigger air intakes surrounding the lower grille that help the big engine breathe. The back end has been modified to fit a distinctive quad exhaust system. There’s also a sleek looking black roof.

There also are striking red brake calipers barely hidden behind 21-inch wheels, with 22-inch alloy wheels available. The brakes are the biggest on the Velar line to readily scrub off the speed the SVA Dynamic is capable of.

Inside, the Velar SVA Dynamic follows the form of other Range Rover “Autobiography” models, with a push towards the extremes of luxury. That means premium quilted leather throughout the cabin, as well as on the 20-way heated, cooled and massaging seats. Key controls have a knurled finish, with aluminum paddle shifters and a sportier steering wheel. If that isn’t exclusive enough, a buyer also can add a carbon trim package.

All this doesn’t come cheap. While the base Velar starts around $50,000, the 2020 Range Rover Velar SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition is expected to go for around $110,000 when it starts rolling into showrooms later this spring.

Disclosure: Paul Eisenstein is a freelancer for CNBC. His travel and lodging for the New York auto show was paid by Ford.

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