At an online press briefing Land Rover has revealed to us the details of the revised Discovery SUV. So what has changed since the current model’s launch in 2017?
Finbar McFall, Product Marketing Director talked us through a range of improvements. He also reminded us of how the original Discovery was the first lifestyle designed SUV. It was born some 30 years ago out of the need to bridge the gap between the luxury Range Rover and workhorse Defender. Discovery was the first Land rover to replace the family or estate car and has always been aimed squarely at active families. The new seven seater certainly looks capable of taking anything a family may want to throw at it.
Changes Outside? Jeremy Waterman, Chief Designer Exteriors was on hand. Jez told us that the design has been enhanced with JLR’s current reductionism design language at its core. The stepped roof and dominant C pillar feature and overall its proportions have been well thought out. The is a new body coloured side vent plus a nice crease along the bodywork. The Disco’s face gets lifted with new matrix LED technology and new DLRs. A new grille is quite similar to that used in the latest Discovery Sport. The bumpers front and rear are reworked to enhance the car’s stance. New tail lights feature and are linked by a black panel. The love it/hate it offset number plate position remains. A new ‘R Dynamic’ grade with its black roof and accents looks mean and aggressive and Jez expects it to be very popular.
Inside is nicer. Revised trim and new larger and brighter screens star, and there is a new head up display. There are hidden-until-used steering wheel switches. A new toggle shift gear selector replaces the rotary control and is one of a few nice touches that enhance the cockpit. The latest JLR air filtration system (PM2.5) features to clean the cabin air. The seats are revised, more supportive and the middle row seats have a longer base and also slide (160mm). There is lots of storage space both hidden and open (40 litres in 14 locations). The cool hidden storage pocket behind the dials is retained in the centre of the dash. Passengers are treated well with USBs for all plus click and go holders in the middle seat backs. The boot with five seats in place can carry a washing machine – fold all the seats down and its really big!
Technology steps up. As with all the latest refreshed JLR product dual SIM Pivi/Pivi Pro connectivity and assistance features. This brings the Disco’s in-car tech up to what you would expect from a modern premium vehicle. Eight devices can go online via the in-car Wi-Fi and two phones can be Bluetooth connected to the car at the came time. An activity band (wristband) can replace the conventional key and it allows you go keyless should you go hunting triathletes (opps I meant to say ‘be sickeningly active’). For a cool view of the road ahead and underneath the Discovery ‘Clearsight’ ground view is very impressive.
Power-trains. 48 volt MHEV mild hybrid technology features. The initial line up features a six-cylinder diesel with two outputs: the D250 has 249hp/570nm and the D300 300hp/650nm. Petrol engines feature a six-cylinder with P360 with 360hp/500nm and a four-cylinder P300 with 300hp/400nm. A PHEV version wasn’t mentioned but is expected. Air suspension and the famed ‘Terrain Response 2’ (a.k.a. off road driving modes) remain unchanged – so going off road should never be a problem. There is a new wade mode for more fluid intense terrain.The new Discovery is clearly improved in many ways and we look forward to testing it soon.