What is it?
This is 2012 model Land Rover Discovery 4, the company’s increasingly Range Rover-esque seven-seater. It has been given a light overhaul, the most important changes being the adoption of modified (more powerful and slightly more economical) versions of the V6 diesel engine, the adoption of a new eight-speed autobox and upgrades to infotainment systems.
However, despite the changes not being flagged up by Land Rover, Autocar has uncovered the fact that the 2012 Discovery has also been fitted with a new variable ratio steering rack (which is not fitted to the 2012 Range Rover Sport) and that the chassis has benefitted from the attentions of Mike Cross, JLR’s ride and handling guru.
What’s it like?
As soon as you pull away and start to guide the Discovery along, it is clear that the steering has improved dramatically. At low speeds the steering has a much weightier, meaty feeling and also produces the sensation that the wheel is connected more directly to the front wheels.
At higher speeds, the new steering set-up is a big part of making the Discovery feel more at home on winding lanes. It now feels less top-heavy, it seems to roll less and generally feels more firmly planted. All of which adds up to make it easier for the driver to place the car on the road.