The facelifted Range Rover lures the gentry with styling tweaks and a suite of modern gadgets
Incredible hulk; facelifted Range Rover lures the gentry with styling tweaks and a suite of modern gadgets The Range Rover Vogue 3.0 V6 is one of the biggest and tallest sport utility vehicles available here. ST PHOTOS: ALPHONSUS CHERN

If you are tired of smooth-riding, sharp-handling, well-insulated cars offering well-oiled switches and uneventful drives, the Range Rover Vogue 3.0 V6 will be a good change.

All of the car's technological advancement and chassis refinement have not changed the way the giant 4x4 luxe barge operates.

Behind the wheel, there is still the unmistakable sensation of a tall, hefty vehicle riding on marshmallow springs. Hurried, it moves with all the finesse of an elephant wearing Nike Air.

Selecting Dynamic drive mode reduces the heaving and listing and sets the car up better for twisty stretches. But not by much.

The steering is still a handful, transmission shock is still detectable on heavy throttle and, in the case of the 3-litre supercharged V6, revs often breach 4,000 to get the behemoth to a gallop.

And despite its ability to cause a minor solar eclipse as it passes, the Range Rover has no space between the front door and seat to accommodate a folded umbrella.

This automotive enigma has just undergone a facelift. A new grille and headlight assembly sits flush against a redesigned bumper unit. Its greenhouse area is expanded, with the opaque C-pillar giving way to glass. At the back, twin exhausts are now integrated with the lower bumper. LED lights front and back complete the more modern look.

Inside, the car's cockpit takes its cue from the Range Rover Velar, with practically all on-board controls found on twin touchscreens straddling the centre console.

Mini touchscreens can be found on the wing mirror controls and the car's sunroof screen is operated by gesture control - giving the aristocratic marque a huge helping of cool.

There are 10 connection points on board - from USB to domestic plug sockets.

And front-seat motorised controls extend to headrest angle and degree of lumbar support.

Rear seats can be folded down and raised again via electric switches in the boot. Twin tailgates open and close at the touch of buttons. The rear floor can be raised or lowered to facilitate loading and unloading, too.

Most of the controls work flawlessly, even if the rear-seat backs take a little too long to move up and down. But some switches are sticky and do not work at first touch.

The test-car's keyless system acted up too, and doors had to be locked and unlocked by pressing buttons on the key fob.

Yet, there is no denying the Range Rover exudes an inimitable charisma. It remains one of the biggest and tallest sport utility vehicles in town and quite possibly the most luxurious.

On the go, it is a road boss few will want to mess with. You would be surprised how easy it is to change lanes in this car.

Even getting on board each time is an occasion - made easier by side steps which extend and retract automatically (an option).

Sure, half a million dollars will buy you a cushy and near flawless limousine. But if you want something with character, you cannot do much better than a 2.3-tonne Range Rover.