Range Rover SVAutobiography Dynamic review Reviews 2023 | Top Gear
BBC TopGear
BBC TopGear
Subscribe to Top Gear magazine
Sign up to our Top Gear Magazine
Tuesday 3rd October
First Drive

Range Rover SVAutobiography Dynamic review

£131,625 when new
Published: 25 Jan 2017


  • BHP


  • 0-62


  • CO2


  • Max Speed


  • Insurance


Which Range Rover review is this?

This is the Range Rover SVAutobiography Dynamic, a crash of typography that sees Land Rover’s Special Vehicles Operations (SVO) mix with the familiar Autobiography name, for a go-faster Range Rover range-topper.

Advertisement - Page continues below

The Dynamic part is important, too, as along with giving it more luxury they’ve actually robbed it of some, adding firmer, more sporting suspension. Oh, and the same 542bhp 5.0-litre supercharged V8 from the unhinged Range Rover Sport SVR.

No R badge here?

Goodness no, that’s far too uncouth for the Range Rover proper. It borrows its engine, rather than its badge, to make it the most powerful Range Rover.

Output is up 39bhp over its non-SVO peasant specification Supercharged Range Rover. Inexplicably that extra power doesn’t translate to a faster 0-62mph time, which remains the same at 5.4 seconds. Clearly all that extra stitching on the diamond-quilted leather (and covering the owner’s manual) evidently offsets the additional power.

Advertisement - Page continues below

You’ll lose your poorer friends in the bends, though, the Dynamic cornering more flatly than any Range Rover has before.

How does it do that?

An 8mm drop in suspension helps, as does the unique calibration of the knuckles, links, springs and dampers, as well as some electronics called Dynamic Response and Adaptive Dynamics, which monitor and adjust the front and rear axles independently.

Together, it all contains the Range Rover SVAutobiography Dynamic’s not insubstantial mass in the corners, though the trade off is a bit of brittleness in the ride, not helped by the massive standard 21in, or, more likely, optional 22in alloy wheels.

Top Gear

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

It’s sharper then, sharing the same steering rack as its wild Sport relation, though unlike it, the SVAutobiography Dynamic doesn’t feel like a massive, tall sports car, but rather a sharper Range Rover.

Less wafting then?

Quite, and while it’s impressive, we’re not entirely sure why you’d want, or indeed, need your Range Rover to go around corners as quickly as the Dynamic can.

The engine changes are welcome; after all, why wouldn’t you want more power? The fruitier V8 rumble is an enjoyable accompaniment more of the time, too, the effortless surge it brings never anything less than appealing.

If you can detect the gearshifts from the eight-speed automatic then you’ve got a more sensitive backside than us, though if you feel inclined you can shift the transmission yourself via the red anodised - yes, really - paddle shifters.

The Range Rover remains a paragon of massive luxury and crushing ability, even in the face of newer rivals like Bentley’s Bentayga, which nobody’s really admitting, but the SVAutobiography Dynamic is a clear response to.

But the Range Rover looks good...

Well, there is that, but if the Bentayga’s highlighted one thing it’s that there are people out there with wallets you’d need the towing capacity of the Range Rover to haul around. The SVAutobiography Dynamic gives them the opportunity to make a sizeable dent in those wallets, with a starting price of £132,800.

Being an SVO model you can add significantly to that, there being masses of opportunity for personalisation, from two-tone paint, unique interior treatments and pretty much anything else you can dream of. SVO’s production facility full of craftsmen and women allows it all.

You can visit it, if you fancy a day trip to Coventry, but we can’t help but think it’d have been better situating its personalisation suite (but not the production) somewhere like Park Lane, rather than an industrial park in the Midlands. However impressive it is once inside...

Should I buy it?

No. Spend more, we say, on the SVAutobiography LWB (no Dynamic suffix, note). It has the same 542bhp engine, and all of its opulence and power, with more space in the back.

It’ll be a better, bigger and, crucially, more comfortable buy. Oh, and more in keeping what the Range Rover really should be all about, leaving all the dynamic silliness to the Range Rover Sport SVR underling.

compare car finance
Powered byZuto Logo
more on this car
Take one for a spin or order a brochure
Powered byRegit Logo

Subscribe to the Top Gear Newsletter

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree to receive news, promotions and offers by email from Top Gear and BBC Studios. Your information will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

BBC TopGear

Try BBC Top Gear Magazine

Get your first 5 issues for £5