Abstract We report the implementation of long-range second-order Møller–Plesset perturbation theory coupled with short-range density functional theory (MP2-srDFT) based on the 4-component relativistic Dirac–Coulomb Hamiltonian. The range separation of the two-electron interaction is based on the error function, such that the long-range interaction, to be handled by wave function theory, corresponds to the potential of finite electrons with a Gaussian charge distribution. We argue that the interelectronic distance associated with the range-separation parameter should accordingly be determined from a Gaussian rather than a hard-sphere model. As a first application of our relativistic MP2-srDFT implementation we calculate spectroscopic constants of the complete series of homoatomic rare gas dimers, from helium to the superheavy element 118 and with bonding dominated by dispersion forces. We find that the MP2-srDFT method is less sensitive to the basis set quality than pure MP2, but for the heavier rare gas dimers the computational cost is approximately the same as for pure MP2 if one seeks convergence with respect to both basis set and number of correlated electrons. The inclusion of a short-range DFT contribution allows to dampen the tendency of pure MP2 to overbind the heavier dimers, but it is difficult to find an optimal range-separation parameter for the whole series of diatomics. Interestingly, MP2-srLDA shows better performance than MP2-srPBE for the selected molecules.