We talk to the man behind Jaguar Land Rover's new Discovery Vision concept car to find out how closely it previews the firm's new range of Discovery-badged SUVs

Land Rover's Discovery Vision concept is packed full of new technology and futuristic styling. Revealed at the Beijing motor show earlier this year, the concept points the way forward for the firm's new expanded Discovery family. 

Richard Wooley is design studio director for Land Rover. He answers our questions about the concept.

How close a look at the new Land Rover Discovery is this concept?

It’s us putting stuff out there. It’s getting reactions to a future Discovery and moving it forward. It doesn’t represent anything in particular. There’s a clear understanding of what it’s meant to be; it’s a visionary concept looking at design and technology.

What makes this concept a Discovery?

Above all it has great proportions, something that’s not just a Discovery trait but one true of all Land Rovers. It sounds easy to do, but it’s not on such differently sized cars with their own unique design and engineering pressures. This has the Land Rover ethos of a less is more, a pared back approach.

Why the radical departure from the Discovery 4?

Land Rover has a history of innovation. Most people forget that when we launched Discovery 3, it was a radical when compared to Discovery 2. Discovery models don’t tend to do the same things and innovate each time. This concept carries that ethos on. 

What has the approach been inside? 

There’s a revolutionary feel inside where we’ve cleaned up and given a sense of calm, something that compares to the visual noise in other cars. Land Rovers have a unique feel inside and you should get in, relax and understand the type of environment you’re in immediately. There are new ideas in the concept that challenges us, and this will feed back into the future design process. 

What are the differences between Range Rover and Discovery buyers?

A Range Rover customer buys the car as a more personal choice. A Discovery buyer buys the car with others in mind. Discovery models have versatile, social spaces. Range Rovers are more personal and spacious. 

What can the Discovery range learn from the Range Rover range as it prepares to grow?

The Range Rover family models are all individual but all share common themes. There’s not a ‘cookie cutter’ approach to our models. It’s more like a tool box; in a tool box there are different tools for different jobs and in a car sense this can be reflected in size, interiors, technology, design. We offer what’s appropriate. 

What do you make of the comparisons between the concept and the Range Rover?

I’ve analysed this myself and see the differences rather than the similarities. If you analyse, they are different. People see a more sophisticated vehicle with this concept and that’s where the comparisons to Range Rover are made. There are very clear design themes that adhere to all Land Rovers – you get great proportions then pare back, clean up surfaces, and add precision. 

What have you made of the reaction to the concept?

The concept breaks new ground and that can be difficult to explain. You have to give time to the concept and people to reflect. It’s easy to make a snap judgement. Peoples’ opinions can shift and I’m looking forward to hearing more feedback. 

What technology can we expect from this on future models?

We’ll apply the technology across products in an appropriate way. Customers of our products have different requirements, and we will always put our technology on the most appropriate products.

See more pictures and read Autocar's history of the Land Rover Discovery.

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Our Verdict

Land Rover Discovery
The Discovery really is the defining go-anywhere super-utility vehicle

The Land Rover Discovery has an unbeatable combination of practicality, off-road ability and on-road manners

Join the debate


24 May 2014

Thank heavens this vehicle is only a concept.
Apart from LR's very high prices, I would have been delighted to own any one of their products, but this awful slab sided and bland concept certainly is not improving with familiarity.
PLEASE LR rethink before any production model arrives.


24 May 2014

I think the suicide doors are great and the front looks good ,side is good ,but the back not quite right.I like the Discovery 4 bulk looking back.I know ,some find it to be boxy ,but very functional and considering the Discovery 3 {same body] came out 2003 ,it still looks fresh.very difficult for Land Rover to replace.What ever they do ,please do not make all vehicles look the same.I do not like the corporate themes ,whereby all the range clones each other ie q3 q5 q7
series 3 5 7 etc.
If the Discovery Sport and the Discovery 5 or whatever it is called say looked a bit similar the other rugged model based on Jaguar XE architecture should look boxy and Tonka toy.
The same with Jaguar ,if they made a Golf size car if an oval grill suits it, do not but a rectangular grill on just to make a so called family .

24 May 2014

They should takedown the photo “Image 20 of 22”, until they can get the “crease line” in the two doors to align correctly . . . fancy blue lights or not . . . . the leading edge of the rear door is noticeably lower than the trailing edge of the driver’s door!! :(

27 May 2014
RCT V wrote:

They should takedown the photo “Image 20 of 22”, until they can get the “crease line” in the two doors to align correctly . . . fancy blue lights or not . . . . the leading edge of the rear door is noticeably lower than the trailing edge of the driver’s door!! :(

Give 'em a break! You do actually realise that this is just a life-sized model???? its not even of prototype pedigree......

You don't get production fit and finish on styling models!

24 May 2014

This concept does not look like a Land Rover Discovery. It looks like a Range Rover with a modfified C pillar.

The distinctive raised roof of a Discovery is nearly non-existent on this concept.

If this concept makes it to production, it will be a mistake.

24 May 2014

Looks really awkward to me, that weird rear overhang and then that SSangyong squashed three-cars-in-one rear three quarter view doesn't do it any favours.

24 May 2014

too much Range Rover not enough Land Rover

24 May 2014

Absoulutely love the direction JLR are heading, however find this concept very bland and derivative. It certainly fails to push any boundaries design wise. That's a shame IMO

The c pillar is much like that on Mercedes M class for instance.
And the roof step and port glass are highly distinctive Landrover trade marks almost lost on the concept. Shame.

I also will be sad to see the freelander badge go.

Landrovers should think tonka toy tough, jcb etc compared to the glitzy Range Rover.

25 May 2014

...love his work - Rover 75 remains one of the most beautiful sedans ever designed

26 May 2014

So they will get rid of the Freelander and replace it with an Evoque clone for Land Rover and now Replace the DIscovery with a Range Rover Clone. They will probably just dump the Defender as it doesn't make enough money or turn it into another Evoque which I cannot see farmer in Mid-Wales buying anyway! Surely you should leave the Land Rover to appeal to the Middle Class when the Range Rover already appeals to the wealthier working class and people without taste.


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