Land Rover is exploring a convertible version of the Evoque and will make a production decision ‘within six months’. Design director Gerry McGovern unveiled the concept, that will make its debut at the Geneva Motor Show next month, at Pinewood Studios.
McGovern said that “Land Rover has a history of creating new segments; with the convertible, we believe we have an opportunity to do it again. It’s another twist on the Evoque story.”
The Evoque convertible concept has a powered soft-top roof with a glass rear screen, which is stowed in a recess below the rear deck. The boot is re-engineered to fold down like the original Mini’s tailgate, while pop up rollover protection would be packaged behind the rear seats.
McGovern and his team were able to neatly package the roof with the help of the Evoque’s waistline, which rises to the rear of the vehicle. The convertible gets a bespoke alloy-wheel design and a pimento red leather interior to contrast the causeway grey exterior paint.
An engineering team under David Mitchell will look at the underbody stiffening required to compensate for the now convertible roof as there is still some conditioning to do – McGovern is looking into lowering the suspension to drop the body down which ensures that the rear end doesn’t look too bluff and the Evoque’s agile handling is still maintained
After Geneva, Land Rover will show the Evoque convertible at the New York show to gauge reaction in the US market which is critical for convertible sales.