The Land Rover Discovery is one of our favourite SUVs. There are a number of third-generation models on the used car market. In this guide we tell you what to look out for.
The Discovery beats the competition by offering genuine go-anywhere capability with added benefit of seven seats.
As a used buy it makes a lot of sense, as long as you can cope with the expensive running costs.
Three engines have been available in the Discovery: a 4.4-litre V8 petrol engine, a 2.7-litre V6 diesel and most recently a 3.0-litre twin-turbo diesel. We would recommend that buyers steer clear of the petrol option because of the running costs. The 2.7 can feel a bit lethargic but it's a very refined cruiser. The 3.0-litre is the most refined and economical of the engines, averaging 32.1mpg.
In 2009 the Discovery was face-lifted. Changes were made to the cabin to bring it in line with the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport and the 3.0-litre diesel engine was introduced.
The third-generation Discovery's cabin was a huge leap forward from the second-generation. It's classy, practical and huge. Seven-seater versions can accommodate seven adults and the visibility from the driving seat is great thanks to the height and the big windows.
Originally three trims were available: S, SE and HSE. All cars have air-conditioning, CD player and alloy wheels. SE trim adds leather seats. HSE is range-topping trim and comes with sat-nav and Bluetooth.
After the face-lift, the specs changed to GS, XS and HSE. GS cars have climate control, Bluetooth and electric windows. XS cars have leather seats, sat-nav and cruise control. HSE trim has even more toys than before including an upgraded stereo system and a reversing camera.
The third-generation Land Rover Discovery is very practical and has great off-road ability. There are some common problems that buyers should be aware of.
The diesel-powered Discovery was recalled for a problem with its brakes that was caused by oil entering the braking system and limiting its effectiveness. Affected cars were recalled and Land Rover fitted modified parts.
A number of cars that were built in the second half of 2006 had to be recalled due to fuel leaks. Fuel could leak from a bearing on the fuel pump which could cause a fire if left unrepaired. Cars were recalled and had new parts fitted.
Land Rover recalled automatic Discoveries built in 2005 due a faulty part in the transmission that meant that the Park setting may not properly engage. Affected cars had the offending part replaced.
Nearly 600 petrol Discoveries built between 2004 and 2005 were recalled. Petrol could leak from the fuel tank on affected cars causing the car to stall while underway. Land Rover replaced the fuel tanks.