By Alexi Falson, 10 Aug, 2021
Review - Land Rover Discovery
April 29, 2021
Land Rover has been on an absolute roll over the past few years. The recent success of its compact Evoque gave it even more of a share of the premium SUV market, which it now competes in multiple forms. There’s the almighty Range Rover, the smaller Range Rover Sport, the go-anywhere Defender, and of course, the iconic Discovery.
There is one problem, though. The latest generation Land Rover Discovery is more than $25,000 more expensive than its predecessor, which begs the question: is the increased price tag justified?
Let’s find out.
Starting Price: $99,990
OnlineAuto Savings: $17,015
How Much Does It Cost?
The Land Rover Discovery in its cheapest form costs $99,990 before on-road costs for the entry-level Discovery S D300. Prices increase for the mid-level SE D300 to $106,100, with the flagship Discovery HSE coming with a price tag of $113,700.
Land Rover’s optional R-Design pack - which adds a number of special visual touches - can be added to either the entry-level S D300 or SE for $5,200, or an added $4,900 on the range-topping HSE model.
How Much Can OnlineAuto Save You?
Using OnlineAuto’s car buying service, you can save an average of $17,015 by sourcing one of our car specialists to help you find the best value model for you.
What Features Does the Land Rover Discovery Have?
The base model Land Rover Discovery S D300 comes with a number of comfort, entertainment and driving features. Around the body, there are LED head and tail lights with heated, power mirrors, 20-inch alloys wrapped in all-terrain tyres and electronic air suspension.
Inside, the features list includes an 11.4-inch touchscreen multimedia unit with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, panoramic sunroof, eight-speaker sound system, ebony grained heated and ventilated leather seats, two-zone climate control, as well as a host of safety equipment.
The mid-range Discovery SE D300 adds premium LED headlights, front and rear panoramic sunroof, automatic headlights, 21-inch alloys, Meridian sound system, a power tailgate, 18-way adjustable seats.
The flagship D300 comes packed with Matrix LED headlights, 22-inch alloys, more powerful Meridian sound system, leather steering wheel, premium cabin lighting and comprehensive safety package.
11.4-inch touchscreen infotainment system
3D Surround Camera
Adaptive Cruise Control
Electronic Air Suspension
22-inch alloys (D300)
Matrix LED headlights (D300)
Is it Comfortable to Drive?
The Land Rover Discovery offers insanely comfortable riding dynamics when you consider just how capable it is in an off-road or towing situation. Thanks to Land Rover’s adjustable electronic air suspension and adaptive driving modes, the driver can simply opt for their preferred mood, and either cruise to work or navigate the great outdoors with ease.
Powering the base Discovery lineup is a 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged diesel with a small 48-volt electric unit producing 221kW and 650Nm of torque, while an optional 3.0-litre petrol engine offers 265kW and 500Nm of torque.
The Discovery strikes a remarkable balance between luxurious refinement and off-road capability, to the point that it can feel like two different cars. Around town, the air suspension irons out any signs of bumps or irregularities while maintaining a supported, yet soft drive quality.
When the going gets tough, the Discovery gets straight to work thanks to its Terrain Response 2 system, high-riding stature and torquey engine, which contributes to its 3500kg of towing capacity.
All up, there’s very few cars on the road that can go as far as the Discovery does, and even fewer that offer the level of refinement and sophistication that Land Rover has packaged into the Discovery.
Is it Practical and Spacious?
Inside the cabin, the Discovery offers a premium interior that is extremely spacious in both the front and rear of the cabin. The Discovery might not be the biggest car in Land Rover’s lineup, but it remains a huge car in itself and is more than capable of swallowing up seven people. There are no issues with headroom in the rear of the cabin, although you will want to keep the age of those sitting in the rear two seats quite low.
Around the back, there’s 258L of boot space with its seven seats standing, which expands to 1,137L with the rear seats folded down, and a huge 2,406 litres with the second-row seats folded.
Is it Safe?
ANCAP has given the Land Rover Discovery its maximum Five-Star ANCAP Safety Rating, and the base model comes packaged with a 3D surround camera, adaptive cruise control, traffic sign recognition with adaptive speed limiter, emergency braking, eight airbags and lane-keep assist.
A more comprehensive suite of safety equipment is available as an optional extra, which includes blind-spot assist, clear exit monitoring, rear collision and rear traffic monitoring.
Is it Fuel Efficient?
Land Rover claims economy figures of 8.9L/100km for the Discovery in mild-hybrid diesel form, while emitting 232g/km of CO2. The figures for the petrol-powered variant stand at 10.6L/100km, meaning if economy is a key priority for you, opt as always, for the diesel version.
Our Verdict: Is the Land Rover Discovery Worth it?
The Land Rover Discovery is - and has been since its introduction - a formidable offering into the premium SUV market. Pragmatically, there’s a number of options out on the market that offer better value for money than the Discovery, but few that strike the delicate balance between capability and refinement in the way that Land Rover is famous for.
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Five Specs You Need to Know
- Electronic Air Suspension
- 8.9L/100km economy for 3.0-litre diesel
- 1,137L of cargo storage (while seating five)
- 650Nm of torque
- 3500kg towing capacity
- Beautiful cabin design
- Exceptional ride quality
- Extremely capable off-road pedigree
- Considerable price-hike over replacement
- Uneconomical petrol engine
- Complex and pricey options list