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Land Rover Discovery – 1990 (First Gen) vs 2021 (Third Gen)

Posted on 06-08-2021 by Suraj Dhirwani

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Brands: Land Rover
Category: Then & Now

Commonly referred to as “Disco” the Land Rover Discovery is a series of medium to large premium SUVs, which are produced by the British car maker Land Rover, and later Jaguar Land Rover. The series is currently running in its fifth generation, of which the first was introduced in 1989, the first new model series since the 1970 Range Rover – which inspired it. Some call it influential, since it was the first to market a true off-road capable family car.


Commonly referred to as “Disco” the Land Rover Discovery is a series of medium to large premium SUVs, which are produced by the British car maker Land Rover, and later Jaguar Land Rover. The series is currently running in its fifth generation, of which the first was introduced in 1989, the first new model series since the 1970 Range Rover – which inspired it. Some call it influential, since it was the first to market a true off-road capable family car.  


At the 1989 Frankfurt Motor Show Land Rover first presented the Discovery as an off-road family car, inspired by the 1970 Range Rover, which ended up becoming a luxury icon. The Discovery was based on the more opulent Range Rover, featuring the same chassis, suspension and a four-wheel drive system, a body design which offered a 3- and 4-door versions, packed with a four-cylinder diesel and V8 gasoline power under the hood. The next year in 1990, the 5-door version followed, but there was hardly any difference between the 5-door and the 3-door versions. The number of seats were the same, except for an extra row in the 5-door in the boot. The larger version was launched in order to capture a wider segment of the market. The 3-door version was only launched so that they could avoid the Discovery taking over the market for the more expensive Range Rover.  


The current running third generation Discovery was launched at Packington Hall near Meriden, UK on 28th September 2016, the eve of the 2016 Paris Motor Show and it went on sale in the UK in February 2017. Sharing the platform with the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport, the current Discovery leaves behind many design traditions of the former generations for a more modern, though a less candidly practical design.