Discovery SE

Land Rover Discovery SE Review



New Land Rover Discovery brings greater capability, technology, style and luxury to the Discovery nameplate

What is it?

The all-new fifth generation Land Rover Discovery. New from the ground up, the Discovery is essentially Land Rover’s answer to the likes of other seven seat SUVs such as the Audi Q7, Volvo XC90 and BMW X5. However, unlike its German and Swedish rivals, the Discovery must not only be a luxurious urban cruiser, but an equally capable off-roader.

What’s it cost?

Well, like all Land Rover products, the new Land Rover Discovery is available in a number of trim levels, with a choice of engines and a myriad of options. The range starts with the Discovery TD4 S priced from $66,450 and climbs all the way to the powerful and bling Discovery TD6 HSE Luxury priced from $116,800 plus on roads and options.

We tested the Discovery SD4 SE which is priced from a not too unreasonable $83,450 plus on road costs. Key standard equipment includes electronic air suspension, a twin-speed transfer box, an electronic multi-mode off-road system, an excellent stereo and LED headlights that were equally excellent.

Our test car was crammed with a wealth of options – we’ll include a full list at the end – that included adaptive cruise, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring, a third row of seats, Land Rover’s Active Key, heated seats, tow assist, an electric tail gate and keyless entry, blowing the total price out to $123,150 plus on road costs. Ouch.

What’s it go like?

Rather well. The Discovery’s 2.0 litre four-cylinder turbo diesel produces a very respectable 177kW @ 4,000rpm and 500Nm @ 1,500rpm. Acceleration is more than brisk enough with a claimed 0-100km/h time of 8.3 seconds – that’ll come in handy if you’re a little tardy for the school run – and with commendable smoothness and refinement. Granted, you’ll never mistake this motor for a petrol.

Fuel economy respectable too, with Land Rover citing an official combined fuel consumption figure of 6.5 litres per 100 kilometres. We averaged 10 litres across a mixture of freeway and heavy (and infuriating) Melbourne traffic. Our figure was a little way off Land Rover’s, but the fuel economy was still decent for something of this size and weight.

The Discovery’s start/stop system helped contribute to this frugality and the system re-started the engine promptly once the driver depressed the accelerator.

The standard air suspension ironed out road imperfections seamlessly, whilst maintaining good body composure. Steering is light, but delivers enough feel for the driver to know what the front wheels are doing.

That air suspension also comes in handy off-road, as does the transfer box and multi-mode off-road system, which has settings for almost all off-road situations to help ensure you don’t get stuck.

Towing capacity is an impressive 3,500kg.

What’s it like inside?

Land Rover has been very clever and careful in designing the Discovery’s interior. It had to be more upmarket and substantial than the Discovery Sport, without treading on the toes of any of the Range Rover branded vehicles. And, they seem to have struck a balance.

That chunky dash is attractive and easy to use, while giving the Discovery its own distinct personality. There are hints of the Range Rover in there, with those retro-inspired door cards and some switchgear and pieces of trim.

Seating is comfortable and supportive and there’s ample room in the front two rows. The optional third row of seats is better suited to children. Speaking of the third row of seating, the two rearmost seats fold flat into the floor and a raised and lowered fairly easily. Although electric assistance would be appropriate in a car of this calibre.

Even with the seats up you get a decent amount of cargo space, and when the seats are folded flat the load area is huge.

Visibility is generally pretty good, and the 360degree camera system is a useful tool, especially when parking. The only visibility drawbacks are those large rectangular headrests in the middle row which seem to block the driver’s line of sight when looking in the rear view mirror.

Overall, the interior of the new Discovery is a pleasant place to be.

What we like:

  • Comfort
  • Capability
  • Diesel’s performance and frugality
  • Style

What we don’t:

  • Expensive options
  • Some electrical glitches – overzealous parking sensors and temperamental load area lip
  • Diesel can be noisy
  • Rear headrests restrict visibility

Sale or no sale?

Yes, we’d consider a new Land Rover Discovery as a posh all-rounder. We’d choose our options very carefully though.


  • Drive Pro Pack – $4800
  • Electric Sunroof w/- Fixed Rear Glass Pano ( power blinds and rear reading lights) – $4280
  • Silicon Silver Premium Metallic Paint – $4020
  • 7 Seats (manually adjustable third row) – $3400
  • Capability Plus Pack ( active rear locking differential, terrain response 2 and All Terrain Progress Control ATPC) – $3200
  • Head Up Display – $2370
  • Keyless Entry – $1850
  • Surround Camera System – $1610
  • InControl Secure for Warranty Period- $1300
  • Powered Tailgate – $1140
  • Activity Key – $940
  • Digital Audio Broadcast Radio (DAB) – $920
  • Full Length Black Roof Rails – $920
  • Privacy Glass – $870
  • InControl Protect – $850
  • 360o Parking Aid w/- Visual Display – $830
  • Heated Front Seats – $830
  • Advanced Tow Assist – $830
  • Premium Carpet Mats – $620
  • Powered Inner Tailgate – $560
  • InControl Apps – $540
  • Infrared Reflective Windscreen – $540
  • Heated Windscreen – $470
  • Brushed Linear Aluminium Finisher – $470
  • Auto-dimming Exterior Mirrors – $400


Price: $85,950

Warranty: Three years/100,000kms

Service interval: 12 months/26,000kms

Safety: Five Star ANCAP

Engine: 2.0 litre four-cylinder twin turbo intercooled diesel, 177kW @ 4000rpm and 500Nm @ 1500rpm

Transmission: Eight speed automatic, four-wheel drive

Fuel consumption: 6.4L/100km

Dimensions: 4970 (L), 2073 (W), 1888 (H) and 2923 (WB)

Weight: 2115kg

Spare: Full-sized alloy

Country of origin: England


  • Wow Factor8
  • Performance7
  • On the Road8
  • Comfort10
  • Value for Money6
  • 7.8


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The founding father of The Motoring Guru, Matt has been a lifelong car enthusiast and a passionate writer. Back in 2013 when The Motoring Guru was first launched, Matt wanted to combine his two passions whilst offering readers sound motoring advice.