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Land Rover Discovery Vision concept car (2014): first glimpse

Wed, 02 Apr 2014 00:00:00 -0700

Land Rover has issued the first sneak peek at the new Land Rover Discovery Vision concept car, heralding the newly expanded Discovery range.

Booming sales of SUVs have encouraged the British 4x4 specialist to grow its popular Discovery family into a whole range of off-roaders. The next Freelander due by early 2015 will be badged as part of the Discovery lineup, for instance.

Described as a "premium leisure vehicle", the Discovery Vision is a pointer to the next generation of Discos. We'll see the concept car teased here when the covers are whisked off at the 2014 New York Auto Show later this month.

These traced outline drawings reveal a car that seems quite different from the bluff, architectural boxiness of today's Discovery. The shark-like dorsal fin on the side windows around the C-pillar - reminiscent of that reverse tick on a Citroen DS3 - is a much sportier, more modern graphic than that found on any Land Rover product to date. Think sports car, not SUV.

It's a reflection that Land Rover needs to position itself as a purveyor of more everyday cars with a dash of sex appeal, as well as go-anywhere, mud-plugging ability. While there will always be a modest market for goat-like off-roaders, there is a far bigger pool of buyers wanting attractive, more aerodynamic everyday family transport.

The Land Rover Discovery Vision is a landmark concept car for the Solihull-based company, signifying an important shift in strategy as well as premiering several new technologies.

The first look inside the Discovery Vision (see above) reveals a very modern aesthetic: note the almost complete absence of buttons and the large iPad-like touchscreen with which to swipe and tap through most of the car's entertainment systems and minor switchgear.

Design director Gerry McGovern said: "The Discovery has been pivotal in helping to build the foundations of the Land Rover brand. It is admired all over the world and loved by its strong customer base. We have created the Vision Concept to share the essence of Land Rover’s new age of Discovery and to debut a new, compelling, relevant design direction that connects on an emotional level with customers of today and tomorrow.”

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On Bing: see more photos of Land Rover Discoverys
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By Tim Pollard, managing editor, MSN Cars