Preview: 2021 Land Rover Discovery arrives with new cabin, powertrain tech

The Land Rover Discovery has received its first round of updates since the current fifth-generation model went on sale in 2017.

Everything we love about the rugged-yet-family-friendly SUV remains and is now complemented with revised looks, state-of-the-art cabin technology, and new, more efficient powertrains. The updates are being introduced for the 2021 model year.

Tweaks to the exterior are mild, with the most obvious change being the new patterns in the lights at both ends, as well as the new grille and cleaner rear fascia. A new R-Dynamic model is also available and comes with unique touches inside and out.

2021 Land Rover Discovery

2021 Land Rover Discovery

The changes are more significant inside where comfier second-row seats and a much more modern dash can be found. The dash features a large 11.4-inch touchscreen serving as the infotainment hub, along with a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and available color head-up display.

According to the Land Rover, the 2021 Discovery’s infotainment system is simpler to use, with many frequently used functions now accessible in just two taps or less. The system also integrates Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, as well as WiFi for up to eight devices, and support for over-the-air updates.

In the powertrain department, there’s a new selection to choose from. The old gas and diesel V-6 engines are gone, replaced by a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 as the base option and a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 with mild-hybrid for buyers seeking greater performance. The 2.0-liter engine is good for 296 horsepower while the 3.0-liter offers up 355 hp. The mild-hybrid component of the latter is an integrated starter motor and generator that can aid the engine during high loads and recover energy under braking and coasting. In both cases all-wheel drive is standard.

2021 Land Rover Discovery

2021 Land Rover Discovery

For buyers looking to get rough with their SUV, the 2021 Discovery offers a maximum towing capacity of 8,200 pounds and maximum storage of 74.3 cubic feet (with second- and third-row seats folded flat). The drive modes selector also has a new Wade mode that optimizes the vehicle for water fording, including applying the brakes automatically when the driver switches off Wade mode to restore full performance from the brakes from the first application.

Pricing for the 2021 Discovery starts at $55,250, including destination, and the online configurator is already up and running on Land Rover’s website.

For more on the Land Rover Discovery, read the in-depth reviews at The Car Connection.

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