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Extreme 518bhp Land Rover Discovery SVX shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show

Rugged Land Rover Discovery SVX to sit alongside SVR and SVAutobiography models, costing around £100k

This is the Land Rover Discovery SVX, the first ‘extreme off-road’ vehicle from the company’s Special Vehicle Operations division and, potentially, the first Discovery to nudge the £100,000 price point. 

SVX is designed to sit alongside the high-performance SVR and luxury-oriented SVAutobiography editions. Land Rover insiders say the Discovery’s semi-rugged reputation makes it an ideal candidate for the first SVX makeover - not least because earlier generations of the car were used in the extreme Camel Trophy off-roading competitions in the nineties.

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The Discovery SVX gets a retuned version of Jaguar Land Rover’s 5.0-litre supercharged V8 engine, producing 518bhp and 625Nm of torque, and mated to a reprogrammed version of the JLR’s ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic transmission.

The biggest gains in off-roading ability are likely to come from the chassis modifications, however. The car gets an active anti-roll bar set-up, called Hydraulic Active Roll Control (H-ARC); this is designed to improve wheel articulation to maximise traction on poor surfaces, although Land Rover also claims that it will reduce body roll in normal conditions too. 

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The Discovery SVX also features improved approach, departure and breakover angles, thanks to raised ride height, long-travel dampers and new suspension knuckles. The car also gets 815mm-diameter, 275/55 R20 Goodyear Wrangler tyres; these feature a more open tread pattern to help cut through mud and find grip. An active centre and electronic rear locking differentials complete the chassis tweaks. 

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The main change in the SVX’s cabin is the use of a conventional gear shifter instead of the Discovery’s usual rotary controller - although there are also bespoke seats that feature ‘X’ motifs in the stitching.

The exterior treatment has a subtle nod to the Camel Trophy vehicles, with a roof-mounted light pod that would provide greater illumination on and off remote, unlit roads. There are also bespoke front and rear bumpers, with skidplates, along with a unique satin-grey paint finish, exposed recovery eyes that can each cope with a weight of six tonnes, and a black finish on the side vents, front grille and roof rails. 

The Discovery SVX will be hand-built at SVO’s technical centre in Coventry - and production is scheduled to start in the first half of 2018. Land Rover is taking registrations of interest now, even though the firm has yet to announce a price. Well-placed sources say the SVX will be pitched some way above even the £70,000 First Edition Discovery models - and that could mean that the car has a figure close to the £100,000 mark.

The Discovery SVX will make its public debut at the Frankfurt Show - where Land Rover is also unveiling a series of tweaks to the model’s wider range, including a more configurable 12.3-in digital instrument panel, a 4G WiFi hotspot, a head-up display and an air ioniser.

Land Rover UK is also to introduce a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol Discovery to British customers. The Ingenium-powered model will have 296bhp and 400Nm of torque, and its CO2 emissions should start at 222g/km.

Would you buy a Land Rover Discovery costing £100k? Let us know below...

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