Some 17.6 centimetres were added by Land Rover to the length of the Discovery for the 2004 version, but this transformed it from a cramped five-seater with two occasional seats to a seven-seater of unparalleled space and comfort.
Though the 2009 revision to the car added some much-needed perceived quality to the cabin, Land Rover still chooses to throw some hard, durable plastics in among the soft-touch stuff. Some buyers may not welcome such utilitarian touches, but they work superbly and lend the Discovery a useable edge.
It isn’t perfect, though. The centre console and trip computer look a bit dated and over-complicated and it’s a shame the speedometer is hard to read. Still, with the upgrades came a high-grade touchscreen multimedia system that noticeably betters the system fitted to the Discovery 3 in terms of its usability and graphics quality.
However, if the Discovery doesn’t offer enough space, quality, comfort and things for children to twiddle, then nothing will. The three individual chairs in the second row have excellent support, and the foldaway third row is brilliantly well executed, simple to erect and big enough for adults.
The Land Rover Discovery’s 2.5 tonnes make it a somewhat intimidating device to drive, but factor in the enormous body structure, the individual three-point belts, the twin front airbags, full-length curtain side airbags and optional curtain airbags for the third row and you have a car that should ensure the safety of those on board.
As the Discovery was slowly phased out its trims were limited to just Graphite and Landmark. The entry-level model includes xenon headlights, parking sensors, roof rails, electric folding wing mirrors and 19in alloy wheels as standard, while inside there is cruise control, a reversing camera, keyless entry, a Meridian sound system, leather upholstery and heated front seats.
Upgrade to the range-topper Landmark adds 20in alloy wheels, all round heated seats, electric sunroof, heated steering wheel, rear TV screens and an uprated Meridian audio system. For those after a Disco to use and abuse as a workhorse, Land Rover created a Commercial version, which provided more plastic mouldings and easy-wipe materials inside.
The fifth generation Discovery will come in four main trims - S, SE, HSE and HSE Luxury. The entry-level model will get 19in alloy wheels, halogen headlights, a powered tailgate, autonomous emergency braking, lane departure warning and 8.0in touchscreen infotainment system. Upgrade to SE and you will find leather seats, LED headlights, an enhanced audio system, sat nav, rear parking sensors, and folding and heated wing mirrors fitted as standard.
The HSE models will gain premium Windsor leather seats, 16-way electrically adjustable front seats, 20in alloy wheels, a rear-view camera, keyless entry and JLR's InControl Pro infotainment system complete with a 10in touchscreen display and Meridian sound system. While the range-topping HSE Luxury trim adds 21in alloy wheels, adaptive headlights, rear TV screens, electric sunroof, 360-degree camera and uprated Meridian sound system.
For those after a more exclusive Discovery have the option to opt for the unique First Edition models which adds a fixed panaromic glass roof alongside the sunroof and 22in alloy wheels over the HSE Luxury trim.