Land Rover Discovery

3.0 SDV6 HSE Luxury

Land Rover Discovery, Loire wide
Land Rover Discovery, hotel
Land Rover Discovery, ferry
Land Rover Discovery, Loire
Land Rover Discovery, vineyard
Land Rover Discovery, memorial
Land Rover Discovery, dashboard
Land Rover Discovery, camera
Land Rover Discovery, boot wine

THE Land Rover Discovery is a giant of a car in many ways.

It has been around for a while now and a new model is on the horizon, but the Discovery is a vehicle that offers brand desirability, seven-seat practicality, class leading off road and towing capability - plus executive prestige on the company car park.

The refined and powerful V6 diesel also delivers power and pace and fairly reasonable economy given the weight of what is a huge slab of metal.

The styling both inside and out has been tweaked over the last couple of years and now the high-end, Landmark and Graphite have been added, but the big, bold profile remains pretty much the same.

This model has a £60,000 price tag but it's a price many are prepared to pay for a motoring icon and it is literally packed with kit, from basic electrically powered windows and door mirrors, to sophisticated infotainment systems which include TV monitors in the back of the front seats to keep rear occupants amused.

There's just about everything else in between including air suspension, 19-inch alloys, rear parking sensors, cruise control and high quality sound system and a host of other wizardry.

It also offers state of the art communication, the optional £350 InControl option allows you to use apps on your Apple or Android smartphone via the in-car screen.

It is huge, try getting it into 1970s-built car park spaces and then getting out of the doors.

It could be described as the ultimate family car which despite its prowess in the rough stuff is just as likely to be seen on the school run.

Its square boxy shape is offset with neat styling cues like the recently revised headlights and grille, huge bonnet and 20-inch alloys and clever puddle lights which project the shape of the Discovery onto the ground.

Inside it offers a commanding driving position, which can be achieved with electrically powered, multi-adjustable seats. There is excellent leg and headroom for front and middle row occupants and excellent all-round vision through the large glass areas.

The rearmost set of seats both fold flat into the boot and although useable by adults, are more suited to children.

The layout's central features include the rotary gear shift selector and steering wheel-mounted paddle shift and central touchscreen or brains of the car. These operate infotainment, connectivity, air conditioning and even the TV.

It has a luxurious feel with leather seats and wood and veneer trim, luxury soft touch finish and a host of safety kit.

Reversing sensors and parking camera is standard on this model while the sound system is one of the best.

Boot space, with the rearmost two seats folded away is excellent, but less so with the seats in place and access is via a split rear door/window and low loading lip.

On the road, the three-litre 250bhp V6 diesel engine, mated to and eight-speed automatic gearbox with stop/start delivers real performance.

Claimed economy is 35.3mpg, but CO2 emissions of 213g/km puts it firmly in the top bracket for benefit in kind taxation for business users.

There's plenty of pace and power when required. The 0-60mph sprint takes around nine seconds. It also cruises well at high speed on the motorway and despite the boxy shape, there is little road noise, but some eividence of wind noise.

Being so high off the ground, it does wallow a bit on corners, but mostly feels composed and offers occupants a calm ride.

Off-road capability is legendary, delivered through the Terrain Response system.

Raising the air suspension allows you to switch to the dial to relevant conditions, sand, snow, mud etc, lock the differential and allow the electronic aids to control the four wheel drive system.

It can tackle just about any conditions from wading through rivers to scaling muddy hills or just towing the horsebox or burger van off a muddy field.

FAST FACTS

Land Rover Discovery 3.0 SDV6 HSE Luxury

Price: £59,965

Mechanical: 255bhp, 2,993cc, 6cyl diesel engine driving four wheels via 8-speed automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 112mph

0-62mph: 9.3 seconds

Combined MPG:35.3

Insurance Group: 42

C02 emissions: 213g/km

Bik rating: 35%

Warranty: 3yrs/unlimited miles

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