The Lexus RX350L is the most ideal seven-seater SUV for drivers who won’t be venturing out of our concrete jungle. The car’s smaller size makes it much easier to manoeuvre in built-up areas, while its quiet cabin and well-tuned dampers give it the silkiest ride quality in this Group Test.
We are also pleased with the RX350L’s throaty V6 and slick 8-speed automatic gearbox. Less impressive, however, are the clumsy infotainment controls and tiny third-row, which would make anyone taller than 1.5m quite claustrophobic.
Space isn’t an issue in the Land Rover Discovery, for this British behemoth has more than enough room for seven adults and their belongings. The Discovery also has the most commanding driving position and an all-wheel-drive system with various modes for various surfaces. It even has the ability to wade through waters up to 900mm deep, or twice the wading depth of the Volvo XC90!
That said, the Discovery’s size might be a handful for some drivers. Nimbleness isn’t this SUV’s strong suit either, because it feels heavier and slower than what its on-paper figures suggest.
Running neck-and-neck with the Discovery is the XC90. It may not have the refinement of the RX350L or the jungle-bashing potential of the Discovery, but the Volvo seven-seater scores points with its surprisingly zippy performance.
Also impressive are the XC90’s intuitive infotainment system and cushy second-row seats. The numerous safety features are a definite plus, too.
The XC90, however, would be even better if it had a more pliant ride and a quieter drivetrain. But all told, its mix of space, pace and practicality makes it very appealing to suburbanites searching for their rugged seventh heaven in Singapore.
Buttons on the Lexus RX350L fob (left) have the nicest tactility, the sizeable Land Rover Discovery key (right) is the least pocket-friendly but has the most functions, while the Volvo XC90’s device is the lightest and looks the classiest.