Manly Extensions of the Rugged Kind
Turn onto a main road, and the girth of this vehicle is rather noticeable, with it filling a lane quite a bit, but it is still rather easy to drive along narrower side roads. The air suspension works wonders on patchy surfaces, delivering excellent ride comfort, even for passengers in the rear.
Conveniences like Lane Keep Assist, Driver Condition Monitor, Adaptive Cruise Control with Queue Assist and Blind Spot Monitor, helps with keeping the Discovery within the confines of the lane, and assists in those longer journeys. In addition to the Queue controlling abilities of the cruise control, additional safety from the included autonomous emergency braking does help with preventing accidents.
That 3.0 turbocharged diesel ensures a near-immediate build-up of torque, with a pleasant backward push into your seat, delivering its maximum 600Nm at just 1,750rpm as with many diesels, tends to hold this within a narrow band till 2,250rpm, but essentially where you will be keeping the revs within in most occasions, with the help of their 8-ratio ZF transmission. Planting your foot on the throttle, and getting the revs to climb, does not reveal any flat spots in performance until around 4,000rpm, where you can feel an obvious tapering off of performance.
With a hefty kerb weight of 2,230kg, incidentally about 480kg less than its predecessor; the mighty Disco is still able to put many a road car to shame, with a century sprint of just 8.1 seconds.
Turning the car away from civilisation does bring it to where it truly belongs, and with more confidence compared to its people-carrying SUV peers.
Built-in technologies like its Terrain Response, makes it easier for drivers to set the vehicle in the correct mode for optimum traction and ride height. The permanent 4 wheel drive system is really quite a gem, with our HSE trim test car gaining the advantage of the twin-speed transfer box, which is able to transfer on the go, delivering you a set of lower ratios, allowing for more extreme climbing ability, and in essence is also able to summon all of it’s torque to either front or rear-driving wheels, where extreme situations dictate.
There are optional wade sensors available for the HSE and Luxury models, while not so necessary for us, the Discovery is able to wade to depths of up to 900mm without the need of a snorkel, and benefits from a 34 degree of approach, and 30 degree angle of departure. Together with a confidence-boosting 500mm of wheel articulation, and enough chassis flex to handle even some extreme situations which do not even have anything with the word ‘path’ in relation, it is genuinely difficult to match the Discovery in off-roading ability.
There are other milder options, some even priced within the same price window, which may come across as perhaps a little more posh, or less vulgar (whichever way you may want to see it), and they are usually in-essence road-biased vehicles. The Discovery is easily able to do that road thing we do all day, every day. But if you are one for that added streak of adventure, there are very few compromises, but none close to being equal.
The Discovery does have some large shoes to fill, but this foot we feel, is bigger…