Large Premium SUV of the Year 2019: Land Rover Discovery
The Land Rover Discovery is the 2019 Auto Express Premium SUV of the Year, with the BMW X5 and Porsche Cayenne commended
This is the third consecutive win for the Land Rover Discovery in our New Car Awards. Despite rivals such as the BMW X5 and X7 arriving over the last 12 months, as well as ultra-luxurious models like the Rolls-Royce Cullinan, the Disco beat off competition with its better balance of luxury and refinement, space, kit and cost.
The brand moved this fifth-generation model even more upmarket, combining the class of a Range Rover with the practicality of a seven-seat SUV, and while the styling might split opinion, there’s no denying the Discovery’s ability. The four-cylinder diesel engine lowers the car’s price point and offers a little more efficiency, but we’d still stick with the Sd6. The extra torque – 700Nm in total – means that the Disco’s bulk is easily shifted, plus the smooth V6 hums under the bonnet so refinement is better, too. Air suspension adds to this relaxed feel.
Inside, the driving position is great, there’s plenty of technology available (features such as massaging seats ramp up the luxury element and improve comfort) and remote raising or lowering of the rear-most seats from switches in the cabin boost flexibility.
Each of the five rear seats folds individually, while there’s plenty of space in the second and third rows. Three adults will easily fit in the middle row; it’s a little tighter in the rear, but there’s still enough room for shorter journeys. If you only occasionally need the third row, fold the seats down and there’s 1,137 litres of load space on offer. This is a car that’s been designed for family life, with thoughtful touches such as hidden storage behind the climate control panel, a sliding cup-holder tray above a huge central storage bin, and twin gloveboxes complementing the rest of the versatile package.
From the ride to the unobtrusive powertrain, the cabin and material quality to the practicality that the big seven-seat body brings, the Discovery is every bit a large premium SUV and, currently, the best in the business.
Land Rover Discovery Sd6 SE (£57,060)
The Sd6 engine suits the Discovery’s refined nature, while SE trim brings everything you need at a slightly more affordable price. You get heated leather seats, parking sensors and a rear camera, a 10-inch touchscreen with sat-nav, a load of safety tech, LED headlights and Land Rover’s Terrain Response system – all of which means that it’s a versatile, luxury SUV with plenty of performance.
The X5 is a new addition to this class over the last year. It’s based on a new platform, features more tech, is more luxurious and the engine line-up is great; the straight-six diesels offer lots of grunt, great refinement and strong efficiency. Seven seats are also available, so there’s no denying that the X5 has moved BMW’s offering forward.
There are no diesel engines in the Mk3 Porsche Cayenne line-up, but the option of smooth petrol powertrains and a plug-in hybrid variant mean that Porsche’s large luxury SUV is more appealing than ever. It’s easily the most dynamic car in its class, yet comfort isn’t really sacrificed and the infotainment system is bang up to date.
Auto Express New Car Awards 2019
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- 1IntroductionWhat are the best new cars to buy in the UK today? The 2019 New Car Awards have the answer...
- 2Car of the YearThe Auto Express Car of the Year for 2019 is the all-electric Tesla Model 3
- 3City Car of the YearThe Volkswagen up! is the 2019 Auto Express City Car of the Year, with the Kia Picanto and Skoda Citigo commended
- 4Supermini of the YearThe Ford Fiesta is the 2019 Auto Express Supermini of the Year, with the MINI 5-door and SEAT Ibiza commended
- 5Convertible of the YearThe MINI Convertible is the 2019 Auto Express Convertible of the Year, with the Audi A3 Cabriolet and Mercedes E-Class Cabriolet commended
- 6Compact Family Car of the YearThe Skoda Scala is the 2019 Auto Express Compact Family Car of the Year, with the Mazda 3 and Toyota Corolla commended
- 7Family Car of the YearThe Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport is the 2019 Auto Express Family Car of the Year, with the Skoda Superb and Toyota Prius commended
- 8Compact Executive Car of the YearThe BMW 3 Series is the 2019 Auto Express Compact Executive Car of the Year, with the Alfa Romeo Giulia and Mercedes C-Class commended
- 9Executive Car of the YearThe BMW 5 Series is the 2019 Auto Express Executive Car of the Year, with the Mercedes E-Class and Volvo S90 commended
- 10Estate Car of the YearThe Skoda Octavia Estate is the 2019 Auto Express Estate Car of the Year, with the BMW 5 Series Touring and Volvo V60 commended
- 11Small SUV of the YearThe Citroen C3 Aircross is the 2019 Auto Express Small SUV of the Year, with the Dacia Duster and Volkswagen T-Cross commended
- 12Mid-size SUV of the YearThe Skoda Karoq is the 2019 Auto Express Mid-size SUV of the Year with the Peugeot 3008 and Toyota RAV4 commended
- 13Large SUV of the YearThe SEAT Tarraco is the 2019 Auto Express Large SUV of the Year, with the Peugeot 5008 and Skoda Kodiaq commended
- 14Small Premium SUV of the YearThe Range Rover Evoque is the 2019 Auto Express Small Premium SUV of the Year, with the Audi Q3 and Lexus UX commended
- 15Mid-size Premium SUV of the YearThe BMW X3 is the 2019 Auto Express Premium Mid-size SUV of the Year, with the Porsche Macan and Volvo XC60 commended