It doesn’t seem possible, but it is four years since the Discovery 3 burst onto the scene, and now for the 2009 model year, Land Rover has treated its rugged seven-seater to a very subtle makeover
There’s new body colour coded bumpers, wheel arches and tailgate handle, together with ‘tungsten’ coloured side vents and door handles. All of these changes give a visual lift to the Tonka truck styling. In addition, there are three new colours – Santorini Black, Galway Green and Bournville, and upgrades to the interior trim. For buyers who need to do business while on the move, there’s an updated Bluetooth hands-free system.
Behind the wheel and off-road, the top-notch driving experience is unchanged. It is simply unbeatable amongst the muddy stuff and there are few terrains or slope that it will baulk at. Sheet ice, soft sand, bonnet deep water, are all shaken off as though nothing has happened.
On road, its main rivals match it more closely. Surprisingly, despite its considerable size and space for seven adults, it is easy to drive and seems to shrink around you. The 190bhp 2.7- litre V6 turbodiesel engine is borrowed from sister company Jaguar, and features a single turbocharger in place of the twin arrangement on the XF and XJ. It has bags of torque, but sets a leisurely pace as it struggles to haul the considerable weight around. Once up to speed though, and it proves to be an effortless motorway muncher, offering first class refinement, cacooning the driver and passengers.
At £45,360, the Discovery 3 could never be described as cheap, but for your money you get a long list of standard equipment. 19-inch alloy wheels, a Harman Kardon stereo system, satellite navigation with television, Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity and full leather seats are included as standard. Models lower down the model range offer less of the high-end kit, and probably offer better value. For example, the mid-range TDV6 XS is priced around £8k less, yet still offers leather seats, parking sensors, a Harmon Kardon stereo system and satellite navigation.
ON SALE: NOW RANGE STARTS AT: £29,950 FOR TDV6 GS
- Price: £45,360
- Engine: 2720cc, V6, turbodiesel
- Gearbox: 6-speed auto
- Max Power: 190bhp at 4,000rpm
- Max Torque: 325lb ft at 1,900rpm
- Max Towing Weight: 3,500kg
- Combined Consumption: 27.7mpg
- CO2 Emissions (taxband): 270g/km (G)
- 0-62mph: 11.7secs
- Max speed: 112mph
- Insurance Group: 14