Land Rover Discovery Review 2024

Land Rover Discovery At A Glance

Honest John Overall Rating
If you're after a high quality family SUV that can cope with everything you can throw at it - the Land Rover Discovery is perfect.

+Exceptional comfort and practicality makes this the best family SUV around, all rear seats fold down electrically, 2.0-litre SD4 diesel engine works surprisingly well.

-Touchscreen system frustratingly slow, one-piece tailgate needs room for opening.

New prices start from £43,495, brokers can source from £56,583
On average it achieves 82% of the official MPG figure

The Land Rover Discovery is an incredible piece of design. It’s cabin is big enough and clever enough to transport seven adults, and it’s incredible off-roading ability means it could probably transport them up the north face of The Eiger if it needed to. A classy interior and a squishy ride also mean the journey would probably be very comfortable indeed. Granted, the very best of the Discovery’s rivals - the Audi Q7, for instance - are even better on quality and more polished on the road, meaning they’ll probably suit more family car buyers. If you need your seven-seater to be an off-roader rather than an SUV, though, the Discovery is simply untouchable.

This generation of the Land Rover Discovery  - the Discovery 5 as it’s known - was met with a mixed reaction when it was launched in 2017. Its predecessors all had boxy, no-nonsense styling to make them look rugged, and when folk saw this one, with all its curves and bulges, many worried that the Discovery had gone soft.

Thankfully, it hadn’t.In fact, despite the less rugged appearance, it's actually better off-road. It's around 500kg lighter than before, plus it has more ground clearance (up from 240mm to 283mm) and an increased wading depth. Chuck in an even more sophisticated version of Land Rover’s off-roading system, and it's able to tackle terrain that the old Discovery 4 would get stuck on. 

This huge weight reduction means it's better to drive on the road, too. Granted, it still can’t match its very best rivals on either ride or handling, but it still has the ability to waft you along comfortably - particularly on the motorway - and it feels secure enough in bends.

New for this generation of Discovery was a smaller 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesel engine. It actually works pretty well given the sheer size of the Land Rover, and provides more than enough oomph for everyday driving. Plus, fuel economy and CO2 emissions also improve. What’s more, the Discovery has an improved towing capacity of 3500kg on all models, as well as a clever semi-autonomous advanced tow assist system.

The Discovery has seven seats, each one of which is surrounded by plenty of space. Indeed, it’s third row is the roomiest in the class. What’s more, in high-end versions, all of the rear seats now fold down (and back up again) electrically via buttons in the tailgate.

The interior quality has improved, too - with a design reminiscent to that of a Range Rover - so this Discovery feels that bit more luxurious than before, if not as luxurious as rivals like the Audi Q7 or Volvo XC90. In fact, only a sluggish touchscreen system lets it down; it often takes several prods for it to recognise what you want it to do.

Ask Honest John

We bought a used car privately but the extended warranty isn't in our name - is this an issue?

"We bought a Land Rover from a private seller with an extended warranty certificate. Unfortunately we have had a major fault on the vehicle which requires work, which will hopefully be covered by the warranty. However the owner did not change over the warranty into our name and has now gone very quiet, which is making us very suspicious. We are stuck in limbo waiting for them to change it over but have been advised if they did not pay in full or had purchased in installments the warranty may not be in place. If this is the case and we purchased the car believing it had warranty in place, would we have a claim against the previous owner? The cost of the work is quoted at £15-20K"
Unfortunately, if you don't have the warranty documentation or proof of warranty you're unlikely to be able to do anything here - often a warranty only exists in the name of the policyholder (the previous keeper) and any warranty you bought would have needed to be in your name. This is assuming the warranty was an aftermarket product and not part of the manufacturer's warranty? If the car had a Land Rover Approved Extended Warranty then this IS transferable to the next owner for up to 10 years/100,000 miles, but only if the warranty was paid for in full by the previous keeper. It's worth checking with a Land Rover dealer as they will be able to check this. If not, then your rights as a private buyer are sadly limited and we're sorry to say you may not be able to get any recompense.
Answered by Craig Cheetham

Land Rover Discovery engine failure - who is liable for the repair costs?

"Our daughter purchased a 3.5-year-old Land Rover Discovery with 40,000 miles on the clock six months ago, for which she paid £45,000. The car broke down last Friday, the RAC Recovery Technician could not get it started and suggested that it be towed to a local, highly reputable, garage which has investigated and has advised that the engine is not fit for purpose and needs to be replaced. The sum of £9000 plus labour has been quoted for a new engine We are waiting to hear what the dealer who sold her the car has to say on the matter. If they reject any liability for the cost of replacing the engine can you advise us please on what steps we could take to recover the costs?"
It's difficult to advise without knowing the exact cause of the engine failure. If the engine failed due to a manufacturing fault or some other hidden problem then I would expect the dealer to pay for the repair or replace the vehicle, as the problem would have been present or developing at the time of sale. But, if the issue is due to general maintenance (low oil or water, for example), the dealer may argue your daughter is to blame for the failure. Either way, the car will probably need to be transported to the dealer that sold the car for inspection. Only then can the seller confirm the fault and accept/argue liability. For your consumer rights, see:
Answered by Dan Powell

Is it time to change my car's battery?

"Is there a problem with the battery in my 2017 Discovery? It's losing voltage when left parked for two weeks."
That sounds pretty typical. A modern car is full of energy-sapping electronics and really needs driving at least once a week to keep the battery in good order. If your Discovery still has its original battery, it might be time to change it anyway.
Answered by Andrew Brady

Will the Land Rover Defender be offered as a hybrid in future?

"Do you know if Land Rover are planning hybrid versions of the Defender or Discovery?"
Yes, there's a plug-in hybrid Defender due in 2021. It's likely to be badged the P400e and will probably use the same 2.0-litre petrol engine and electric motor combination as the Range Rover PHEV. The Discovery is due to be facelifted next year and it's likely that will be offered with the same plug-in hybrid setup, too. If you'd rather not charge your car, both are expected to be offered with mild-hybrid setups, although Land Rover isn't likely to go down the conventional 'self-charging' hybrid route.
Answered by Andrew Brady
More Questions

What does a Land Rover Discovery cost?

Buy new from £56,583(list price from £60,540)