Land Rover Discovery ES V8
- Mileage: 43,300
- Year: 2005
- MOT Expiry: June 2019
- Exterior Colour: Zambezi Silver Metallic
- Interior Colour: Black Leather
- Top speed: 113
- 0-60mph: 11.5
- BHP: 185
- Transmission: 4-Speed Automatic
- Engine Capacity: 3947cc
- Engine Configuration: V8
The name "Discovery Series II" was carefully chosen to invoke the history of the original Land Rover Series vehicles. At first glance, the Series II looked very similar in appearance to its predecessors, but under the skin it included a variety of new features – some already fitted to other models in the Land Rover line-up, such as the Freelander's Hill Descent Control (HDC) and the Range Rover's air suspension at the rear – and some completely new options, such as Active Cornering Enhancement (ACE), which reduced cornering roll to insignificant proportions.
For the Series II both the interior and exterior were re-worked to be less utilitarian, although visually it was still quite similar to the Discovery I. In actual fact every body panel was in fact new, with the exception of the rear door outer skin. The rear body was also extended to improve load space.
Both on and under the skin, the new Discovery bodyshell underwent a major engineering and re-tooling programme to achieve the latest world-class standards. The structure beneath was also upgraded in light of new design and manufacturing technologies. Use of ‘Design For Assembly’ (DFA) techniques led to reduced panel count and simplification compared with the previous design. This contributed to a stiffer body shell.
The New Discovery was available with a choice of just two engines: the all-new, high technology 2.5-litre 5-cylinder direct injection diesel, or the latest generation of the famous V8 petrol engine, which was 4 litres in capacity.
In the rear the packaging of the two third row seats was the subject of a major engineering project in its own right. The Discovery has always been essentially a vehicle for families but even though children mostly commandeer the rear seats, they were in fact designed and dynamically tested to meet full adult safety standards.
At the front of the cabin fascia changes included a new passenger airbag module, and a new steering wheel with driver’s airbag. Where appropriate the steering wheel had remote switches for the entertainment system and cruise control. Improved switchgear was of the same pattern introduced for Freelander, and there was a completely new instrument pack.
Automatic transmission, Seven seats, Full leather upholstery, 18-inch alloy wheels, Heated and electrically adjustable front seats with armrests, Leather steering wheel, Digital climate control air conditioning, Front and rear electric sunroofs, Privacy glass, Cruise control, Electrically adjustable and folding door mirrors, Electric windows, Land Rover cassette radio, Spare wheel, Rear mud flaps, Electronic Traction Control (ETC), Hill Decent Control (HDC), Self-Leveling Suspension (SLS), PAS, Discovery overmats, Remote central locking.
Finished in gleaming Zambezi Silver the bodywork remains in remarkable rust-free condition. As a facelift Discovery II this example is easily identified by its later style headlamps and redesigned rear light clusters; all are crystal clear and without any moisture damage. Aside from a very minor graze to the nearside front corner the paint retains a fresh appearance all round, perfectly in line with the car’s low mileage of 43k. As with the body, the underside is especially clean – a real testament to the salt-free roads on which the car resided from new.
The airy cabin is equipped with two electric glass sunroofs and seven full size seats, with the second and third rows folding away completely for a huge rear load capacity. The steering wheel and seats are trimmed in supple black leather and given the low mileage there are very few signs of wear to speak of. The front seats are also heated and electrically adjustable with the added bonus of individual driver and passenger armrests. The dash and switchgear retain a clean appearance and the unmarked carpets are still protected in the footwells by a set of Discovery overmats.
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
The 4-litre Discovery delivers a wonderfully refined driving experience. The silken auto ‘box is a perfect match for the Land Rover V8, and the air suspension ensures the smoothest of rides. The under-bonnet area of this example is extremely clean and very well preserved. The engine itself remains in perfect mechanical fettle and the MOT is valid until June 2019.
WHEELS, TYRES & BRAKES
The 18-inch alloy wheels of the ES present well in their factory coat of silver, with only the lightest of marking to report on very close inspection. The tyres are matching all round and have plenty of tread remaining. On test the brakes do a fine job of pulling the car to a halt and the Self-Leveling Suspension (SLS) operates without fault.
With production of the Discovery II ending in May 2004, this March 2005-registered example is likely to be one of the very last built. Having only ever seen unsalted roads from new the car is entirely free from rust. Corrosion can be a major issue for equivalent UK Land Rovers but this example remains in excellent cosmetic and mechanical fettle.
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