Discovery Is in a Class of Its Own

The Journal (Newcastle, England), April 8, 2006 | Go to article overview

Discovery Is in a Class of Its Own


Byline: By Steve Hughes

Land Rover built its reputation on ruggedness and originally most of its owners bought into the brand for that reason. Then everyone else jumped aboard the bandwagon and these days the world is awash with so-called SUVs offering vastly varying degrees of ability on and off the road.

The Land Rover Discovery traditionally leaned towards the latter at the obvious expense of style and comfort on the road. Loyal followers continued to buy the brand regardless because the Discos maintained their county-set image but it was rapidly becoming obvious that this could not last for ever. The vehicle was in serious danger of becoming extremely old-fashioned in a modern world where competition takes no prisoners. The result was just about the most radical makeover of any vehicle on the roads.

Not only did the designers take a scalpel to the bodywork, they redrew the interior too, which generated an eye-catcher with a standard of packaging that became the envy of its rivals.

All of a sudden the Discovery became the flashiest thing on the road and the most spacious seven-seater of all.

Just about every single one of its multitude of flaws disappeared at a stroke and sales began to soar.

Now the Disco is a much sought-after vehicle that not only looks the business but boasts prodigious off-road abilities that few if any of its rivals can match. Prices start at pounds 38,000 for the 4.2-litre V8 S, rising to pounds 48,500 for the luxuriously-appointed HSE, with the V6 diesel starting at pounds 27,000 for the S and rising to pounds 43,500 for the SE.

Both vehicles are powerful performers although in the case of the petrol model that is at the expense of economy, which can be as low as 19mpg. …

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