Land Rover - Discovery
Land Rover's design department has tried to make the latest Discovery look slightly less aggressive on the road. A series of new features on the face of the car - including Audi-style LED headlights and a neat new two-bar silver grille - have been added to make this 2.7-tonne 4x4 look lower and more curvaceous.
The Land Rover corners in a nimbler fashion than the old model - partly because it weighs less, but mainly because it's been set-up to stay flat in the bends, giving more feel and confidence. It will capably do everything that most drivers would realistically ask of a large 4x4, but take it to the Nurburgring and you may struggle.
The air suspension works fine on the road: despite proving a little unsettled around town, it offers serious smoothness on the motorway.
The fit and finish of our test car seemed excellent. The cabin is convincing as one from a premium, well screwed-together model, with swathes of soft-touch plastics and high-end textiles. However, the previous Discovery only scored three out of five for mechanical quality and satisfaction in the most recent JD Power consumer survey, which may worry some potential buyers.
The new 3.0-litre V6 generates 243bhp and 442lb-ft, with 0-60mph coming up in nine seconds. The engine's extra dose of torque helps give the Discovery enough urge for overtaking on motorways and A-roads.
The packaging of its interior could be better - taller drivers will still feel slightly cramped into the footwell and, although it alters for reach and rake, the steering wheel doesn't have the range of adjustment we would need to find a really comfy driving position.
It still won't be cheap to run, but a claimed 30.4mpg combined fuel economy is a big step forward. CO2 emissions of 244g/km mean the Discovery just creeps in to Band L, costing £405 per year in road tax.
When you consider all the equipment on-board, the high-quality materials and the comfortable cabin, and the fact that the Discovery is almost unparalleled as an off-road vehicle, the £34,495 starting price isn't bad - especially if you're actually going to use it as a cross-country workhorse.
An impressive touchscreen multimedia system and a top-of-the-range sat nav are among some of the impressive kit contained in the new Discovery.