Eco-friendly or not, a V6-powered Range Rover feels a bit sacrilegious

Range Rover V6

Just as word comes from Rolls Royce that it’s considering a V16 engine instead of a smaller displacement engine with forced induction, Range Rover announces it’ll be going the opposite direction with a supercharged V6 as the new base engine for 2014.

The all-new Range Rover went on sale last December with a normally aspirated 5.0-liter V8 base engine and an optional supercharged 5.0-liter V8 range-topper. Just three months since it hit the market, Range Rover is already messing around with the powertrain lineup.

Just this morning Range Rover announced the new 3.0-liter Jaguar-sourced supercharged V6 as the new base engine, available for order for the 2014 model year. The new V6 will produce 335 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque. Although those numbers might not seem very hefty for a full-size luxury SUV like Range Rover, it’ll push the hulking hunk of British aluminum to 60 from a dead stand still in 7.1 seconds and onto a top speed of 130 MPH.

Paired with the new standard eight-speed automatic transmission, the V6-powered Range Rover is capable of crawling up a 45-degree incline without batting an eye. This proves that although it might be one of the most luxurious vehicles on the planet, it can still off-road with the best of them. Additionally, the Range Rover can ford a river up to 35 inches deep and tow up to 7,700 pounds.

Although the new V6 is based upon the old V8, Range Rover brags that the new V6 is 15 percent more eco-friendly than the outgoing base 5.0-liter V8 producing as little as 254g/km of CO2.

We find it a bit funny that Range Rover didn’t detail the new V6 until now. We understand, however, it probably means the engine wasn’t ready when the execs wanted to launch the new flagship.

Range Rover hasn’t said when it’ll be delivering the 2014 Range Rovers ordered with the new supercharged V6 but we presume they’ll hit showrooms in the fall – barring another production delay.