Large Premium SUV of the Year 2017: Land Rover Discovery

The Land Rover Discovery is the 2017 Auto Express Large Premium SUV of the Year, with the Tesla Model X and Volvo XC90 commended

Land Rover evolved the Discovery for this all-new fifth-generation model, taking the iconic seven-seat SUV even further upmarket by adding more tech, refinement, practicality and efficiency.

This British success story arguably marks one of the biggest steps in the Disco’s 28-year history. Not only has the styling moved on dramatically to give the car a much more modern look, while retaining some typical Discovery characteristics such as the stepped roof and clamshell bonnet, but you can now get the model with a 237bhp twin-turbo version of Land Rover’s 2.0-litre four-cylinder Ingenium diesel engine. This makes the Land Rover more efficient than ever, thanks in part to a new monocoque chassis that uses plenty of aluminium to shave up to 480kg off the old car’s kerbweight.

Slashing bulk has reduced emissions, too, so the four-cylinder diesel has a respectable 171g/km CO2 figure. Yet the Discovery still pulls well and offers plenty of refinement, with a diesel growl only evident on full throttle at higher revs. With an identical 3,500kg towing limit to the V6 diesel, you don’t lose much in the way of versatility, either.

Taking mass out has allowed Land Rover to put plenty of tech in, so the Discovery comes loaded with advanced features. The rear seats fold remotely using the brand’s Intelligent Seat Fold tech as part of its smartphone app, or by using the 10-inch touchscreen, and kit such as Trailer Assist helps you reverse when hitched up. A WiFi hotspot, USB charging points for all occupants and the ability to sync your Apple Watch with the car highlight the tech on offer.

The firm’s Terrain Response 2 system means the Discovery is also imperious off-road, as any Land Rover should be. However, it’s the refinement, relaxing, floating ride and luxury on offer that really grab you.

Land Rover Discovery - front cornering

The car now offers Range Rover quality with even more tech at a more affordable price. Factor in the superior practicality compared with its rivals, and the Discovery offers the best blend of high-end feel and usability in the most convincing package in its class.

Our choice

Land Rover Discovery Sd4 HSE (£57,495)

HSE spec is the best balance of kit and cost. With the luxurious feel you’d expect from a high-end SUV and the robust quality Land Rover has become famous for, the Discovery’s breadth of ability is incredible. It’s a great family car that offers refinement, technology and space. It moves the game on another step.

Commended

Tesla Model X

Tesla Model X - front

With its gullwing rear doors, brilliant infotainment and stunning performance given its size, the all-electric Tesla Model X offers a different take on the luxury large SUV formula. Genuinely usable range and the improving charging infrastructure make this car a viable alternative to a conventional luxury SUV.

Volvo XC90

Volvo XC90 - front

As a former Auto Express Car of the Year, the XC90 earns a worthy mention thanks to its individual approach. It’s a great seven-seat SUV that offers premium appeal, practicality and a relatively involving drive. This is the car that announced a new era for Volvo.

Auto Express New Car Awards 2017

For complete, in-depth coverage of the 2017 New Car Awards, buy your collector's edition copy of the Auto Express magazine now or click here to subscribe...

Recommended

Best British modern classic cars you can afford
Best British Modern Classics -
Modern classics

Best British modern classic cars you can afford

Britain has its fair share of automotive icons but the best modern British classic cars needn’t put a king-sized dent in your bank balance
3 Jun 2021
Volvo XC90 review
Volvo XC90 front
Volvo XC90

Volvo XC90 review

Recent tech and style updates have kept the luxurious Volvo XC90 SUV at the forefront of its field
12 May 2021
New Land Rover Discovery 2021 review
Land Rover Discovery - front
Land Rover Discovery

New Land Rover Discovery 2021 review

A mild facelift and mild hybrid tech helps to lift the Land Rover Discovery
17 Mar 2021
Tesla Model X review
Tesla Model X - front action
Tesla Model X

Tesla Model X review

If you want a ludicrously quick crossover with all-electric drive and funny doors, the Tesla Model X is it
1 Mar 2021

Most Popular

Land Rover unveils limited-run Defender Trophy Edition
Land Rover unveils limited-run Defender Trophy Edition - front
Land Rover Defender

Land Rover unveils limited-run Defender Trophy Edition

Just 220 examples will be built to honour past Camel Trophy Land Rovers, all of which have been reserved for the North American market
30 Jul 2021
New 2021 Volkswagen Taigo coupe-SUV breaks cover
Volkswagen Taigo R-Line - front
Volkswagen Taigo

New 2021 Volkswagen Taigo coupe-SUV breaks cover

The new VW Taigo is a sportier, more aggressive looking version of the brand’s T-Cross and is aimed at lifestyle buyers
29 Jul 2021
New 2021 Kia EV6 boasts up to 328 miles of range
Kia EV6 - front
Kia EV6

New 2021 Kia EV6 boasts up to 328 miles of range

Kia reveals more specs for its bespoke electric car, with the EV6 offering long range and an 18-minute 80 per cent rapid recharge time
21 Jul 2021