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When it made its debut in 2017, the fifth-generation Land Rover Discovery was showered with praise and awards, including the CarSales Car of the Year. It was declared a “real game changer” for its performance, packaging, refinement, safety, innovation and unrivalled capability off-road. Now with significant updates for the 2021 model, John Mahoney from Motoring.com.au lets us know if it continues to be an innovator in the segment.
ADVANCED NEW ENGINES
While the exterior carries only “the mildest of nip and tucks, the cabin now includes a faster and better-connected infotainment system, and under the bonnet there’s two all-new engines”. The D300 features an advanced new electrified 3.0-litre inline diesel six “that benefits from the car-maker’s new 48-volt mild-hybrid tech…[and] pumps out 221kW/650Nm...enough to haul [it] from rest to 100km/h in just 6.8 seconds”. The P360 3.0-litre inline six-cylinder petrol engine features twin turbos and an electric motor-driven supercharger, and “launches to 100km/h in 6.5 seconds”.
IMPROVED PERFORMANCE ACROSS THE BOARD
Whether diesel or petrol, Mahoney said, both engines combine with an excellent smooth‑and-quick eight-speed automatic transmission and come with intelligent all-wheel drive. In Comfort or Auto mode “both engines feel well up to the task of shrugging off a near 2.4‑tonne kerb weight”, and comfort, steering and body control have been increased even further. Like the models that came before, Murphy pointed out that where the Discovery really edges out its rivals “is in blending its impeccable road manners with genuine off-road capability...Back on the highway the Discovery remains a civilised place to soak up the kilometres”.
EQUIPPED WITH EVERYTHING A DRIVER NEEDS
The extensive standard inclusions on the entry level S D300 really impressed Murphy, including 20-inch wheels, full-length panoramic roof, 14-way electric front seat adjustment, powered tailgate, a suite of driver assist safety features, and the 11.4-inch state-of-the-art Pivi Pro infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. “With all that on board”, he said, “this most basic S version arguably offers most buyers all they’ll ever need – unless you regularly venture off-road”.
Mahoney concludes by saying the qualities that helped it clinch the 2017 CarSales Car of the Year crown still shine through. “The new Pivi Pro infotainment system is now as good as any of its rivals, while the six-cylinder petrol and diesel engines give it a competitive edge over four-cylinder rivals like the Volvo XC90. Throw in its decent drive and exceptional comfort, and the Discovery remains a compelling proposition.”
Learn more about the impressive new 2021 Land Rover Discovery.