2022 Range Rover SE First Drive: Super Elegant and Secretly Rugged

If you have ever wanted to traverse a steep rocky hill in a large luxury land yacht, the 2022 Land Rover Range Rover SE is for you. There’s really no other way to phrase it. This three-row luxury SUV has every upscale feature and the type of fit and finish you would expect from a vehicle that costs over $100,000. Underneath all of that flashiness, it’s super rugged too. I have the pleasure of driving it for a week, here are my initial thoughts.

A front view of the 2022 Range Rover SE
2022 Range Rover SE | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The 2022 Range Rover SE is more lavish than I expected it to be

A view of the steering wheel in the 2022 Range Rover SE
2022 Range Rover SE | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

I grew up listening to hip-hop artists rap about driving in Range Rovers, but I never really understood the appeal until now. When I first sat in the 2022 Land Rover Range Rover SE, I was thoroughly impressed with its brown Windsor leather seats and soft-touch materials. There’s a padded surface anywhere you rest your arm on your elbow, and there’s even leather on the dash, which is rarely ever touched.

The overall design of the interior is pleasing to the eye as Land Rover took a simplistic and elegant approach to it. The climate control knobs are sleek and have a sharp, tactile feel to them. The leather-wrapped steering feels smooth, and the electronics are well-integrated into the dash.

There’s a 13.1-inch infotainment screen that sits front and center. It’s within easy reach of the driver and passenger, but its functionality could be a little better. There are layers of menus that are difficult to navigate, and the interface graphics look bland. If the infotainment system were a color, it would be beige.

Actually, it’s white, and there’s a little too much of it. But the most important part is that this base model Range Rover comes with seat massagers. So all is forgiven.

The Range Rover SE has plenty of power for what most people will use it for

The Range Rover SE’s powertrain is just as impressive as its interior. On paper, the twin-turbocharged inline-six engine sounds a little weak compared to the 523-hp V8 counterpart. But in reality, the 395 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque are more than enough to pull this massive SUV around.

The engine is connected to a super-smooth-shifting 8-speed automatic transmission that sends power to all four wheels. Speaking of the wheels, the Range Rover has four-wheel steering, which makes it super maneuverable in tight parking lot situations. I’m sure it helps with off-road driving as well.

The Range Rover seems just as capable off the road as it is when driving on it

A rear view of the 2022 Range Rover SE
2022 Range Rover SE | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

I have yet to drive the Range Rover on an off-road section, but it looks like it can handle much more than I can put it through. An adjustable air ride suspension lowers the SUV for easier access and raises it for off-road obstacles.

I will say that the ride is super smooth, even at highway speeds, and the cabin is whisper quiet. There are also a few different drive modes for muddy ruts and hills, as well as a dynamic mode to make it feel sportier. In my experience so far, it doesn’t seem to make the car that much livelier, but then again, it really doesn’t need to be.

Instead, the Range Rover SE is a great car to cruise around at normal speeds. Its serene in-cabin atmosphere and gaudy road presence make you feel like the king of the road, even if you are on the roads less traveled. Now I know what all those hip-hop artists were rapping about.

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