The Range Rover Evoque has won the Motor Trend 2012 SUV of the Year award, given out by Victoria Beckham, former Spice Girl and wife of soccer star David Beckham.
The Range Rover Evoque compact crossover bested the likes of the Jeep Wrangler, the Ford Explorer and the Dodge Durango to claim the perennially noteworthy title from the U.S. publication.
The Range Rover Evoque comes in standard and coupe form, distinguished by the former having four doors and the latter having two. The most basic form is the Range Rover Evoque Pure, which is priced at $43,995. The two-door model, or coupe form, is the only one of its kind currently on sale in the United States.
A stylish, leather-upholstered interior is standard, as is a full-length panoramic sunroof, as well as Range Rover's signature central eight-inch touch-screen control and display interface for communication and entertainment. There's also a new five-inch color information display.
Beckham was named Creative Design Executive to the Evoque program and her fashion business is currently collaborating with Land Rover on a special edition of the vehicle.
Powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged, four-cylinder engine similar to the one available in the Ford Explorer, the Evoque is fitted with an independent suspension with available adaptive dampers and an advanced all-wheel-drive system that promises the kind of off-road abilities Range Rover's vehicles have always been known for. Nevertheless, it has a highway fuel economy rating of 28 mpg, albeit the same as the Explorer and more than the Durango's 23 highway mpg.
The combination of style, performance and efficiency is what heavily garnered the Evoque the accolades of the magazine. In an interesting sign of the times, of the 10 vehicles (the BMW X3, the Dodge Durango, the Dodge Journey, the Ford Explorer, the Jeep Wrangler, the Mercedes-Benz M-Class, the Mini Cooper Countryman , the Saab 9-4x, the Volkswagen Touareg, and the Evoque) that were competing for the title, only one, the Jeep Wrangler, was technically a truck in the traditional sense of the word.
Crossovers have also won five of the last seven North American Truck of the Year awards as vehicles built with body-on-frame construction become increasingly rare outside of the pickup segment.
View the slideshow to look at the sleek interior and exterior design of the range rover.