Land Rover is determined to demonstrate that even though the fifth generation of the Discovery has been made softer and more luxurious than its predecessor, it remains true to the SUV brand's go-anywhere philosophy and has been engineered to take the path of most resistance, should the driver choose.
The fifth-generation Discovery tackled tricky sand dunes, crawled over jagged rocks, (with only three tires touching the ground) traversed deeply rutted dirt roads and breezed up steep inclines during a two-day test drive covering parts of Utah and Arizona in the U.S. west.
With more than 1.2-million units sold globally over the last 27 years, the Discovery is a fixture in an SUV market that is rapidly filling with new entries.
Land Rover parent Jaguar Land Rover knows the intensified competition means sales could be harder to come by.
That is why the new Discovery, which finished 2016 ranked 10th in Europe's premium large SUV/crossover segment, was furnished with several innovative features, such as a fully automatic seating configuration system that uses 23,000 lines of code to operate, an automatic opening tailgate and an intricate terrain management system.
The new Discovery is available in five- and seven-seat configurations. The SUV is offered with a choice of two diesels and a supercharged gasoline engine. All engines are mated to a ZF eight-speed automatic transmission. The SUV also has up to four 12-volt charging points and as many as nine USB ports.