It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that JLR’s turbocharged four-cylinder petrol motor works so well in the Discovery, and yet it does. Perhaps it’s because the Disco weighs nearly two and a half tonnes, or because you expect a Land Rover to feel inadequate with anything less than a hoofing great diesel under the bonnet.
But if there is one thing for sure, it’s that the Discovery Si4 doesn’t suffer from the dreaded ‘big car, small engine’ syndrome in the slightest.
Not only does the compact four-cylinder feel luxuriously smooth, but it delivers performance that puts the entry-level four-cylinder diesel to shame and renders the more powerful supercharged six-cylinder moot.
And yet, unless you are genuinely worried about the future implications of owning a diesel (you can learn more here) we would still opt for the range-topping TD6. It isn’t quite as quick or refined as the petrol, but it is more economical, emits less CO2 and is fractionally more flexible thanks to superior low down grunt. Plus, it’s only £650 more if you specify your Discovery in SE trim – that’s less than the cost of Land Rover's optional keyless entry.
Still, this shouldn’t be seen as a loss for the SI4. Far from it. For those who have been waiting for a well-rounded seven seat petrol luxury SUV, the Discovery should be at the top of your list.
What Car? says...
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2018 Land Rover Discovery SI4 SE
Price £xx,xxx Engine 4cyl, 1996cc, petrol Power 296bhp at 5500rpm Torque 295lb ft @ 1500-4000rpm Gearbox 8-spd automatic 0-62mph 7.3sec Top speed 125mph Official economy 29.4mpg CO2, tax band 222g/km, 37%
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