Fam­ily facelift

LRO (UK) - - Heritage | How The Disco 2 Was Born -

11Land Rover be­came part of Ford’s Premier Au­to­mo­tive Group in 2000; and with a new Range Rover model ready for pro­duc­tion, the pri­or­ity was to get a new Dis­cov­ery on to the mar­ket. But while the new project’s en­gi­neers were por­ing over the lat­est Ford Ex­plorer for pos­si­ble syn­er­gies, the com­pany was in­vest­ing £24 mil­lion in a ma­jor up­date.

The ob­vi­ous ex­ter­nal change was a new front end, in­clud­ing a mod­i­fied grille and bumper with a pock­eted lamp clus­ter in­spired by the lat­est Range Rover. At the rear, the in­di­ca­tors were now in­cor­po­rated in the main clus­ter. New-style wheels and thicker roof bars com­pleted the new ex­ter­nal look. In­doors, there were new colour­ways and re­vised in­stru­ment graph­ics.

Less ob­vi­ous were changes to the driv­e­line, with the 4.6-litre vari­ant of the V8 be­ing spec­i­fied for the US mar­ket. Diff lock re­turned to re­store off-road abil­ity and the trans­fer box got a new case and re­vised gear tooth pro­file. Re­fine­ment was honed with up­grades to body damp­ing, en­gine in­duc­tion and chas­sis body mounts.

There were changes at the back too, with the in­di­ca­tors and re­vers­ing lights be­ing re-lo­cated. Re­vers­ing sen­sors were now an op­tion.

A new front head­lamp clus­ter and grille were the most vis­i­ble up­grades to the 2003-model-year Dis­cov­ery, although the bumper was also new with a re­vised pro­file for im­proved off-road agility.

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