Land Rover Discovery

The Land Rover Discovery was a bit of a detour from the Defender models. The Discovery is a midsize SUV still in production. Its popularity is due to the fact that it kept off-road capabilities. The Discovery is well known but the Defender didn’t make much of an impact due to a lack of updates.

The Discovery was first called ""Project Jay"" within the company before it was introduced to the public in 1989.

More on the Land Rover Discovery
About the Land Rover Discovery

The Land Rover Discovery is a powerful midsize SUV comparable to the top of the line Ranger Rover, but at a fraction of the cost. The first versions of the vehicle were seen as a luxury since it didn’t seem to be built with the family in mind. It had limited cargo and hauling space. On top of that, a complete lack of side airbags made it actually unsafe for any family.

There were some additional and serious faults in the Discovery makeup. The recent models continue the Discovery’s tradition of bad fuel economy, only running 12/17 mpg city/highway. The Discovery plays well in off-road situations but struggles to impress when on the tarmac, where sloppy handling and a stiff, uncomfortable ride make for an unpleasant journey.

Land Rover Discovery Features

The 2012 Land Rover Discovery does have a few improvements, however. Named the Discovery 4, it is offered in three models: the GS, XS, and HSE. A commercial 3.0 model is also available in the U.K.

Under the hood of the GS is a 3.0-liter SDV-6 turbocharged and intercooled diesel engine with an eight-speed automatic gearbox. The turbochargers make the engine move as it produces an impressive 255 hp. The vehicle rides on a four-corner air suspension called Terrain Response.

The XS trim offers touch-screen controls and a variety of communication upgrades such as Bluetooth capability, hard disc navigation, portable audio interface, and digital radio.

The HSE is the top of the line luxury vehicle, offering a lot more comfort inside. Windsor leather seat fronts, a black lacquer fascia, and a three-panel sunroof are offered as well as improved Harman Kardon speakers. Also included is a rearview camera with rear parking assist. A timed-climate control is also built-in to warm up the car when it’s cold outside. It can also preheat the engine.

The Discovery models are known as the LR4 in North America.

Land Rover Discovery Evolution

The Discovery Series I was introduced in 1989 as a cheaper option to the Range Rover. It was offered in a three-door and five-door variant. Powering the original Discovery was a 3.9-liter V-8 producing 182 horsepower or a 2.5-liter 200 Tdi diesel engine.

The vehicle got a major power boost in 1996 when the engine was upgraded to a 4.0-liter Rover V-8 engine. The Discovery was first sold in the US in 1996, so it is likely you’ll find models using the 4.0-liter V-8. These are the best performing vehicles in the Discovery first generation.

The Series II Discovery vehicles ran from 1999 to 2004 and were offered as a five-door only. A 2595 cc Td5 2.5-liter engine was the first offered, which did not increase capacity. Discovery enthusiasts would have to wait until the 4.0-liter Rover V-8 engine replaced it. In 2003 and 2004, the car received a 4.6-liter Rover V-8 engine.

The Discovery 3 or the LR3 as it is known in the U.S. was introduced in 2004. The engines used in the Discovery 3 line were all taken from Jaguar, the first being a 2.7-liter Ford AJD-V-6. A 4.4-liter Ford Cologne V-6 and a 4.4-liter Jaguar AJ-V-8 were also released. The off-road capabilities of these vehicles were greatly improved.

The Discovery 4 or LR4 was introduced in 2009 and are still produced today. Mainly, mechanical changes were made between the third and fourth generation and much of the body design and trim was left the same. Jaguar engines were still in fashion at the company: a 2.7-liter Ford AJD-V-6, a 3.0-liter Ford AJD-V-6, and a 5.0-liter Jaguar AJ-V-8.

Today, the Discovery offers a lot of value for the car owner looking for a vehicle that has luxury and can haul a load off road. If you are looking for a vehicle for riding pleasure, it is best to steer clear of the expensive Discovery and choose a model with better handling and suspension.

Select a Land Rover Discovery Year

2004 Land Rover Discovery

SUV, Utility/Offroad


The 2004 Land Rover Discovery provides an English-made, midsize luxury SUV and stems from a model that debuted in 1989.

ESTIMATED RESALE: $4,166

MPG
12-16
Seats
5

2003 Land Rover Discovery
ESTIMATED RESALE: $3,881

MPG
12-16
Seats
5

1998 Land Rover Discovery
ESTIMATED RESALE: $2,556

MPG
14-17
Seats
5

1997 Land Rover Discovery

SUV, Utility/Offroad


The 1997 Land Rover Discovery classifies as a midsize sport utility vehicle or SUV with off-road capabilities.

ESTIMATED RESALE: $2,431

MPG
13-17
Seats
5-7

1996 Land Rover Discovery

SUV, Utility/Offroad


Introduced in 1994, the Land Rover Discovery serves as a mid-tier option between the cheap, but Spartan Land Rover Defender and the expensive, luxurious Land Rover Range Rover.

ESTIMATED RESALE: $2,321

MPG
13-18
Seats
5-7

1995 Land Rover Discovery

SUV, Utility/Offroad


Introduced in 1994, the Land Rover Discovery serves as a mid-tier option between the utilitarian Land Rover Defender and the more opulent Land Rover Range Rover.

ESTIMATED RESALE: $2,196

MPG
12-16
Seats
5

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