I think it should be obligatory for anyone who’s even thinking about making a negative opinion of 4x4s public to drive a Land Rover Discovery TDV6.
Before I spent a day in what must be one of the most accomplished all-round vehicles on the road, I didn't like SUVs. I couldn't see why they were necessary when an estate would do exactly the same job only a foot closer to the ground.
But the Discovery totally changed my mind. The high ride height and vast expanse of glass surrounding you offers better visibility than in any normal car, and yet the on-road dynamics are equal to those of many big saloons. The cabin is spacious enough for seven adults, you can get up to 30mpg out of it, and pretty much anything that’s too big for it to tow out of the way, it will drive over.
Of course, a TDV6 Disco does produce 244g/km of CO2, and you will be hated by anybody trying to see around you on a roundabout. That is irrefutably a downside of a 4x4. But if anyone gets really angry, I would suggest you let them have a go in your Discovery and then tell them that they could buy a good-condition used example for the price of a new Focus Zetec. See if they’re not tempted.