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Land Rover Discovery and Discovery II



  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    "Settling down on the Volvo"?

    From my research, the XC90 V8 will be the vehicle to beat in the mid size 7-paaenger SUV segment. I got into a XC90 third row myself without dignificant difficulty the other day. (I'm 5'8").

    I remain intrigued by the LR3; but, the XC90 V8 promises to be a solid alternative with good resale. Speaking of which, I don't htink it is purely model specific. Range Rover has has such a bad rap, that it will take a few generations to overcome the bias, IMO.
  • hatton3hatton3 Posts: 13
    The LR3 (still called the Discovery here)has now been thoroughly tested by the British motoring press. It has received universal acclaim as the best in its segment. What Car has published a very comprehensive test against the XC90, X5 and Touraeg. The LR3 was the clear winner in every single category. Admittedly they were testing the diesel engines in each model (which are by far the most popular in Europe where leaded petrol costs about the same as red wine) so I cannot say if the v8's would have stacked up the same way. The LR3 is now completely sold out for 2004 in the UK yet there isn't a single vehicle yet in a dealers showroom. Land Rover certainly have a winner with the LR3 and I suggest you should wait to drive one yourself before buying anything else in this segment.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Advice appreciated. I'll try to check out that comparison if it is on the web.

    I've always admired British style - owned an old Jaguar E-Type that I still think is one of the best looking cars of all time. Unfortunately, it did have a few mechanical issues that forced me to sell it to maintain my sanity. My more recent Honda S2000 required 4 oil changes in 2.5 years, period.

    I will try to hold off making any decisions until the LR3 arrives. Thanks again.
  • pkc4pkc4 Posts: 3
    All three lights, i.e. BRAKE-TC-ABS are coming on more often. They are coming on if I stop on the traffic lights (not always). But today they came on atleast 2-3 times in a span of 2-3 hours and I did not take the highway(FYI). I took the vehicle off-roadin gin Hollister hills 2-3 weeks back and after I got back got it washed and since then I have been noticing squeaking noise when I press brakes. I tool the vehicle to dealer for few other things and mentioned about the three lights (last week) and he replaced the ABS sensor. But for the last 2 days again lights are coming on. What is going on? I did a search on archives in this forum and found out that it is very common problem. How much concern should I be?? I just want to be more eductaed about this problem when I go back to the dealer..

  • Hello,

    If you haven't already figured it out, LR3 is to replace the Discovery because it IS the Discovery! As Hatton3 has mentioned, it is still called Discovery everywhere else. A Sales Guide at my local Land Rover Center explained to me the lettered nomenclature (LR3) is done for legal requirements pertaining to the leasing plans here in north America.

    FYI (again, if you didn't ALREADY come to that conclusion),

  • Yes, the ABS sensors! I have a 2003 Discovery and have had one of the front sensors replaced (they are under warranty) after seeing the same lights on my console. About a month later, those lights were back on and one of the rear sensors was replaced. No problems with the sensors anymore (been over a year). So if those lights are back, it may simply mean another (different location) sensor needs replacement. As you have no doubt read on this board, once these things get fixed, they seem to stay fixed. So keep at it and if they ultimately all need to be "fixed", then at least you know they'll more than likely stay that way (I doubt it will have to go that far).

  • tincup47tincup47 Posts: 1,508
    The name change to LR3 had nothing to do with legal requirements. It was decided by the North American marketing group to change the name. It mostly was done to let the American public know that this was indeed a new vehicle, not a freshening of the Discovery. Don't know if I agree with it, but it isn't going to change. The only reason to do this from a leasing standpoint would be to have residuals not be tied to the prior vehicle.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    And, as a member of the "American public", I believe that it makes good marketing sense to put as much distance between the former Discovery and new LR3.

    Correct or not, the perception among those that I have discussed SUV's with is that the Discovery is a vehicle to be avoided. Huge depreciation hits the moment it is driven off the lot, poor handling and driving dynamics, lack of quality control and numerous and mechanical annoyances, etc. In the words of one of our neighbors who still owns a 2001 version, he went for it in part "to be different" than the generic Japanese / American SUV. However, he didn't intend "to be stupid" about being different and after having numerous mechanical problems and getting extremely low trade in value quotes (even to jump up to a Range Rover), he now describes his Discovery as "hands down, my worst automotive decision in 30 years". He happens to be a prominant reporter for the Washington Post, so I'm guessing I'm not the first he has shared this opinion with.

    And anyone that checks the Washington Post and sees Discoveries being advertised at $10,000+ under MSRP - less than a Honda Pilot - are certainly not going to be inclined to rush to test drive the LR3 at a $50k MSRP if there is perceived to be ANY connection between the two. Land Rover has a tough enough job on their hands just to convince most of the American public that the LR3 is worth considering at all, even without a name connection to the Discovery.

    I am interested in giving the LR3 a fair evaluation. Had it been called the "Discovery 3", I wouldn't be a candidate at $35k, let alone $50k.
  • I decided to check into the new LR3. A colleague of mine, her dad works for Land Rover. He has been driving a test model for some time. Since he works for Ford, I asked if he could get me a deal on the new LR3. He shared that Land Rover is going to try to hold prices at MSRP for the first few months of release. He said the best he could do in good concious was ask for a $500 discount off of MSRP.

    I also did some checking on my own. Land Rover has some pretty aggressive numbers for this vehicle. One Centre Manager told me that they would like to move 5,000 vehicles in the US by the end of the year. It will be interesting to see how this shakes out. Land Rover historically has poor quality control on vehicles. Also, resale value stinks. So what will win out? I am hoping that banks are not fooled by the new badging. I am hoping that the past will force the dealers to sell vehicles below MSRP sooner than later. Even the best selling SUVs have some play right now. Sell 5000 vehicles or stick to MSRP?

    Any thoughts?

    BTW - I owned a 95 Disco, Biarritz Blue. My dad had a Disco as well. Our problems were minimal, but it wasnt the car best I've ever had either. At the time, we bought to be different too.
  • Hello Tincup!

    Hmm. Your message spiked my curiosity! The Sales Guide I mentioned didn’t say anything about an “image” change. He only mentioned leases as the reason for the change in name (Discovery to LR3). So now I’m wondering: If Land Rovers had/have a bad reputation (low resale, etc.) then why is the new Land Rover Range Rover still called by the same name? Conversely, why is the new Discovery not called LR3 everywhere else in the world to get away from a perceived bad reputation? I do recall the Sales Guide mentioning something about leasing “residuals”, but I sort of blanked out after hearing that! ;-)

    You work for LRNA, so do you know why the LR3 is still called Discovery throughout the world instead of following suit with north America? They've gotta' have a reason! Again, I’m curious now!

  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 168
    The reason is... everywhere else, Discovery is a respected name. Only in America it's not worth that much more than Explorer. Range Rover is still a decent brand even in North America.
  • gppgpp Posts: 13
    I just returned fom Ireland and it looks like the disco has about a 5 to 1 preference over any other SUVs. Everyone I talked with seemed to think it was the best thing since slice bread. There's also a very active 4x community there, so you do see a number of defenders as well. So branding problems appear to be largely a North American problem.
  • tincup47tincup47 Posts: 1,508
    You are correct. Also the Discovery name goes back to 1994 in the US, but it was introduced in 1989 for the rest of the world. Also with the increase in price the LR3 is changing who it is competing with. The US marketing group feels it is targeted against the BMW X5, Lexus GX470, Mercedes ML500, VW Toureg, and Acura MDX. This is an upscale move so they wanted a fresh start.
     At least this was how it was explained, I'm not in marketing.
  • That’s weird.

    Well, I’m a bit confused now! Please bear with me! So in the U.S., the Discovery falls apart and has a lower than average resale value, but in the rest of the world the Discovery is a good, solid vehicle able to withstand the beating of off-road use and still hold together (?). Please, someone, correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t these vehicles made in the same place? Shouldn’t all of these matters match (i.e. equally good or equally bad)?

    Again, please bear with me, but why would there be such a difference of opinion in the U.S. from the rest of the world? For example, I did quite a bit of research when shopping for a vehicle and concluded (still do) the Discovery (Land Rover, for that matter) is one of the best vehicles for off-road. Since I do take off-road trips (for fossils mainly – a lot of basketball-sized rocks and boulders over which to drive) I needed a serious vehicle. The Discovery fit that niche perfectly! Perfect performance so far! So I (living in the U.S.) apparently concluded the same as the “rest” of the world, it’s a good, solid, capable vehicle. So you can see my confusion as to why my neighbors, the “general public”, perceive it as the opposite. What’s going on here? Can the five less years of exposure in the U.S. Tincup and GPP mentioned make that kind of difference?

  • tincup47tincup47 Posts: 1,508
    Different markets, different perceptions. The Discovery does not "fall apart". Most of the issues are more annoying than disabling. Also most European Discoverys are diesels and do not have the annoying check engine light issues caused by OBDII. It could also be that customers in other markets are not as sensitive to what US customers consider to be major issues. Having been at the retail level with other brands, I can attest that many customers complain about noises, vibrations, and other issues that are very difficult for the service personnel to even notice.
     As an example, my car has a fan that starts when you open the door that blows air across the temperature sensor for the ATC system. I didn't even notice this until I was on another site and the subject came up as a major problem for someone. I finally listened really closely and found out there is a very faint hum, but to the person posting it was the sign of a major defect. It's actually normal, but the poster wouldn't believe it and was trashing the car on the site.

     As far as resale goes, that is driven strictly by demand in the market. The Discovery had several things going against it that made it appeal to a small customer base in the US. Interior size, egress to the rear seats, control layout, along with the questionable quality reputation. Anytime you decrease possible demand or increase supply over demand, resale values will go down. These issues are not necessarily the same in Europe, where cars are generally smaller and the customers value things differently.
  • carvercarver Posts: 1
    I have fallen in love with a 2004 demonstrator Disco SE, drives like a dream, color and interior just the way I like it and the price is good.
    With the price of gas at over $2.20 per gallon for hi test, I am thinking twice about buying a gass guzzler such as this -can anyone advise on the mileage the truck gets, can it use regular or any other advice on this issue? Kindly please I do realize that if I cannot afford the gas I should not buy the truck. Thanks All!
  • Carver,
    Re Disco SE gas mileage. My Disco was purchased new in January of 2003. We have driven 23,566 miles. Our gas mileage over this time has averaged 15.84 mpg. We live in the Denver area, but have taken a number of trips around the country, including Florida, New Jersey, Texas, Kentucky, Washington State, and Montana. Thus, our driving includes some long distance cross-country trips. On two of these trips we averaged 16.95 mpg and 17.56 mpg respectively.

    The worst single fill I have recorded is 12.97 mpg, while the best single tank full recorded 19.79 mpg. Those are extremes, and should not be expected to happen very often.

    Our driving generally includes, in addition to the long trips, lots of suburban driving, and a great deal of off-road driving in Montana and Colorado. Some of our adventures have taken us over some of the higher dirt (make that rock) trails over the Colorado mountains. Running over rock trails in low range does nothing good for gas mileage, but it is all included in the above numbers.

    Mileage is worse in the winter, when I am more inclined to use the Disco, rather than my small rear-wheel coupe that gets over 30 mpg (a snow thing). I am a fuel mileage conscious driver. Seldom any jack-rabbit starts, and foot off the gas when the light ahead of me turns red. Living at an altitude of over 6,000 feet, rather than closer to sea-level, can't help the gas mileage, either.

    As far as repairs go, my one and only repair has been the replacement of one of the headlight low beam bulbs, purchased at the local auto store and easily replaced. I have not yet (knock on wood) experienced any of the problems that one hears about. If one of your requirements is off-roading in rugged country, the Disco is hard to beat.

    My experience, of course, is only indicitative of my vehicle. Since I don't plan to sell it any time soon, I could care less what the resale value is at the moment. Your mileage and experience may be different.

    I find that our Disco has lots of character to go along with its obvious quirks. I deal with the quirks and enjoy the character. If I had to revisit my decision to buy the Disco, I would do it in a minute. Good luck, which ever way you decide to go.

    Light Cahill
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Thank you for an informative post.

    Interestingly, we bought a 1996 Isuzu Trooper (5-speed manual, no less) when we were on a tight budget back in late 1996. From the time we bought it until about 2002 (5-6 years), I would have had a similar post to yours. About the same gas mileage, about the same reasonably pleasant overall experience. Unfortunately, at 65,000 miles, the engine blew up and we have had numerous other more significant repairs since. I've also noticied that the paint and finish are now showing more deteriation than my older 1995 Nissan Maxima with 153k miles.

    In looking for a replacement SUV, in addition to all of the other considerations, I'm trying to predict what the ownership experience will be like in 5-8+ years. That's hard to do, since a lot of the vehicles we are looking at (XC90, GX470, etc.) have only been around for 2-3 years.

    Again, thanks for the informative post. It's nice to know someone else out there keeps as detailed of mileage logs as I do.
  • After driving the LR3 today, I believe LRNA will be able to meet their goals. First of all, the doors close cleanly. If you have ever owned a Disco (I have) or closed the door on a Range Rover, they all have the distinct Rover clunk/crunch. Even the new 2004 RR clunks when you close the door.

    Not so with the new LR3. The Jaguar V8 is smooth and powerful. The vehicle is also quiet. Just as cool is the ability to use the steptronic to shift gears. In a vehicle this size, it was nice to be able to gear it down and then rev it up coming out of the corner.

    The interior is nice and airy. The rear seats can seat an adult easily. I am 6'2" and had no problem getting in, getting seated and getting out. Also, there are several Range Rover features carried over into the LR3. For example, gone are the window controls on the center arm rest console. they are in the same place as the Range Rover, on the left window sill of the drivers seat - very clever and easy to use. There are lots of cup holders everywhere. There are three sunroofs - one working - two alpine. My daughter loves the vehicle.

    My sales person says they have sold a lot of their incoming inventory already. She is confident that the vehicle will be selling at MSRP for some time. Also, they might have a hard time moving the 2004 Range Rovers because the new LR3 is such an upgrade.

    Now the downs. No wood trim. Lots of black trim everywhere. When you sit in the RR, there is lots of wood inlays, etc. The LR3 seems plain on the inside. This could change as the car I drove belonged to the Regional LRNA rep. His car was pre-production so this could change.

    I was planning on waiting to get one, but it offers a few advantages over my GX470. One big one is that the seats fold flat into the floor. Today, my seats hang above the windows, losing valuable cargo space. Also, the seating seems to be better. I sit up higher in the LR3. And of course the rear passengers sit up higher too because of the theatre seating. It also has more room behind the third row seats than my GX. We had to go to a compact stroller because space was limited behind the 3rd row.

    Part of my euphoria could also possibly be related to getting a new car as well. Some people smoke dope, some get high off of new car smell. Either way, as long as LRNA can keep selling the vehicle at MSRP it will bode well for resale value.
  • sam818sam818 Posts: 127
    as a side note.. I had the air temperature sensing problem on my 04 Range Rover which resulted in a continually drained battery. My problem was not with the car, but with the dealer who refused to even acknowledge that the issue had been bought up on the Land Rover GTR site (tech issues site). He suggested I get a trickle charger!!! :) Ultimately Land Rover came ups with a TSP which addressed the problem and the fix was perfect.
  • peeetepeeete Posts: 136
    Since the conversation has been about the likely pricing of the LR3, what about leftover 2004 SE and HSE Discos? Edmunds states that there is $5000 dealer cash, so what would be a fair discount from MSRP? I would guess that these vehicles should be discounted even before the $5k cash, or am I being too hopeful? With any other vehicle, with a new model out, it would be invoice less the cash, but these are Land Rovers, so it must be different!
  • pkc4pkc4 Posts: 3
    Hi Charlie,

    Thanks for your response. I wanted to share some more info with the group.

    After dealer Changed the ABS sensor (Right Front Wheel) the lights came back in again so I took it back.

    This time he changed Changed the R/F ABS Harness from Sensor to ECU but Dealer drove it and still the lights came back in

    This time he Changed The Traction Control or SLABS ECU and tested OK but as I brought it back from dealer , next day the light came back once and now for the past 2 dats no light.

    I will wait for few more days and see what happens.

  • gppgpp Posts: 13
    Your expectations should be correct. The marketing deal from Ford should be completely independent of whatever the dealer is willing to do. Call around. I would expect at least 7K off MSRP, possibly a good deal more. There are still alot of 04s out there. I just recently picked up an SE7 and was very happy with the price.
  • peeetepeeete Posts: 136
    I am looking to add a small amount of wood to my dash, to make it look like an HSE. The only people I have found who carry such a small kit is Exotic wood dash. Two questions: has anyone used them, or can you suggest a different company? The second question is: what is the OEM wood (2004 Disco).
  • tincup47tincup47 Posts: 1,508
    The only wood trim from the factory for the HSE's is the same as the SE. It only has the horizontal trim on the dash above the glove box. All 03-04 Discoverys SE and HSE had the same wood. The S model has no wood trim. Earlier vehicles added wood trim on the front doors. There are wood trim kits available for 03-04 Discoverys, P/N FDG500010ANV.
  • peeetepeeete Posts: 136
    A few questions about the trim kits:

    According to the 2004 Brochure, the HSE has "burled wood trim" on the center console, unlike the SE. It surrounds the gear levels and the window switches. Ive seen it and it looks nice. THat is all I want as covering the entire dash in wood is ugly in my opinion. Is the part number you mentioned this console only kit? (I assume it is an LR part Number).

    I mentioned exotic dash as they seem to be the only one (besides LR possibly) that offers this small size kit. It is only about $140, and is real wood, so I thought it might be a reasonable match. I just have no idea if the aftermarket kits are junk or not.
  • tincup47tincup47 Posts: 1,508
    Ooops, my mistake. Actually those are not part of any kit, but they are available as separate parts. The part numbers are as follows:

    FJV101660 for vehicles with heated seats

    FJV101860 for vehicles without heated seats
  • nanuqnanuq Posts: 765
    Two Saturdays ago I went around my Series I Disco with my son and bled all the brakes, exchanging the NASTY dark fluid with nice clean stuff. A little preventive maintenance. He commented on the rotor wear evident at the rear, but not at the front. I took a closer look and he's right.

    I've been running a harder semi-metallic Lockheed pad at the rear, and softer Wagner pads at the front. I'd estimate the rear rotors are worn at least twice as much as the fronts... which are barely touched, at 93k miles and my 5th set of pads. The rear rotors will catch a fingernail at their outer rims; there's a small lip there. The front pads have no lip at all.

    If you're doing your own brake work, look hard at the nice soft Wagner pads. They're easy to replace and the rotors are lasting great.

    Obligatory Lord Lucas Disclaimer: My Land Rover is a piece of #$%#$@ and parts fall off it continuously. It is the worst vehicle in the Solar System and I regret having even glanced in its direction.

    (that oughtta keep Lucas at bay for another few months)
  • My Rear Axle Seal has failed... If I have fluid leaking onto the back of my rear rotors, how long will I have had to go before extreme damage occurs? - A $500 repair... HOw long can I go before getting it repaired. Thank you!

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