New Skoda Kodiaq vs Land Rover Discovery Sport vs Toyota Land Cruiser

The Skoda Kodiaq should definitely be on your shortlist if you need a seven-seat SUV, but how does it compare with established rivals from Land Rover and Toyota?...

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What Car? team
23 Mar 2016 10:40 | Last updated: 14 Jun 2018 00:03

Our verdict

We knew the Kodiaq was good going into this test; after all, the cheaper 2.0 TDI 150 version had already seen off the Kia Sorento and Mazda CX-5. We were keen to see whether this range-topper could cut it against premium competition – and it absolutely can. It’s definitely the best car here. It competes on space with the Land Cruiser, and betters the Discovery Sport in many areas, too. Despite costing the least to buy, it’s the fastest and, when equipped with optional adaptive suspension, the most comfortable.

To top it off, it has the classiest interior and loads of equipment. The Discovery Sport is still a fine thing. It doesn’t have quite as much boot space or third-row seating room as its rivals, but the deficits, to the Kodiaq at least, are small. It’s the same story elsewhere. No, it doesn’t cushion you from bumps or corner quite as well as the Kodiaq, but nor is it disgraced. Yes, it looks expensive next to the Skoda, but it won’t cost private buyers or company car drivers much more in the long run. A classier interior, to reflect its premium badge, and a better engine may well have swung things in its favour.

Against such accomplished, cutting-edge opposition, the Land Cruiser is a lamb to the slaughter. For most folk it isn’t a great option because it’s noisy, slow and bouncy and has a messily arranged, cheap-feeling interior. Yet it’s roomy enough for seven people, and if you really need to rely on off-road prowess or towing ability then it does stand out. Otherwise, it’s really best avoided.

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1st – Skoda Kodiaq

New Skoda Kodiaq vs Land Rover Discovery Sport vs Toyota Land Cruiser

For Strongest engine; great to drive on optional adaptive suspension; classiest cabin; lots of luxuries

Against Third-row seats aren’t as roomy as Toyota’s; wind noise; worst performer off road

Verdict A fine buy, but cheaper Kodiaqs make even more sense

Rated 5 out of 5

New Skoda Kodiaq vs Land Rover Discovery Sport vs Toyota Land Cruiser

For Well equipped; slow depreciation; lowest CO2

Against Tightest third-row seats; so-so performance

Verdict No longer the very best but still a great buy

Rated 4 out of 5

Read our full Land Rover Discovery Sport review

Find a great Land Rover Discovery Sport deal

3rd – Toyota Land Cruiser

New Skoda Kodiaq vs Land Rover Discovery Sport vs Toyota Land Cruiser

For Best for carrying seven adults; fabulous off road

Against Noisiest; slowest; unwieldy; thirsty; safety kit

Verdict Roomy and good off road, otherwise poor

Rated 2 out of 5

Read our full Toyota Land Cruiser review

Find a great Toyota Land Cruiser deal

Specifications: Land Rover Discovery Sport 2.0 TD4 180 HSE

Engine size 2.0-litre diesel

List price £39,800

Target Price £37,621

Power 178bhp @ 4000rpm

Torque 317lb ft @ 1750rpm

0-60mph 10.3sec

Top speed 117mph

Gov't fuel economy 53.3mpg

CO2 emissions 139g/km

Specifications: Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TDI 190 Edition 4x4 7st DSG

Engine size 2.0-litre diesel

List price £34,895

Target Price £34,895

Power 187bhp @ 3500-4000rpm

Torque 295Ib ft @ 1750-3500rpm

0-60mph 8.5sec

Top speed 130mph

Gov't fuel economy 49.6mpg

CO2 emissions 151g/km

Toyota Land Cruiser 2.8 D-4D Active 7st auto

Engine size 2.8-litre diesel

List price £40,330

Target Price £37,792

Power 174bhp @ 3400rpm

Torque 332lb ft @ 1600-2400rpm

0-60mph 12.7sec

Top speed 109mph

Gov't fuel economy 38.2mpg

CO2 emissions 194g/km