It’s without question that the Land Rover Discovery Vision concept was the star of the 2014 New York auto show. JLR wisely chose to launch the car at one of the smaller ‘International’ auto shows and, once again, stole the limelight — but it also didn’t have to fend off other global debuts. Smart PR move.
The Discovery Vision is a big deal in its own right. As a preview of the 5th generation Discovery — and indeed a whole new range of models that will wear the Discovery nameplate — the concept provides a foretaste of the ‘leisure’ line of vehicles, the first of which will be a replacement for the aging Freelander model and built on the Evoque platform. Called the Discovery Sport, it is slated to go on sale in 2015.
The Discovery line will accompany the ‘luxury’ Range Rovers and the ‘adventure’ Defender line, outlining Land Rover’s brand pillars, the principles of which have been defined as emotive design, unrivalled capability, and ultimate versatility.
While purists are up-in-arms over the undeniably ‘softer’ and more aerodynamically efficient design of the Discovery Vision concept, Land Rover’s design director, Gerry McGovern, says the Discovery just had to change with the times.
“It’s important to acknowledge your heritage, but at the same time you need to be looking forward,” McGovern said at the concept car’s unveiling in New York. “The car has moved on from Discovery, it’s had to, because one of the things that’s more and more important is aerodynamics. This car is sculpted to move through the air more efficiently.”
The series of videos below outlines the multitude of design elements, convenience features and technologies showcased in the Land Rover Discovery Vision concept to make it a more advanced, versatile and modern vehicle.
Design studio director Phil Simmons and chief designer Massimo Frascella comment on the Land Rover Discovery Vision concept exterior design, the newfound form language, the size perception and the new single piece rear tailgate, which breaks from tradition.
Chief interior designer Mark Butler, interior design studio director David Saddington and color and materials specialist Joanna Keatley highlight the design elements, individual colorways and innovative materials used in the creation on the Discovery Vision concept interior.
Detachable door cases that convert to stroller luggage, deployable side steps in the sills, versatile seat backs with integrated tablet docks, and a large glazed skylight are some of the interior highlights on the Discovery Vision concept.
Some of the more versatile innovations in the Discovery Vision concept include an activity platform, social bench seat, deployable event platform and integrated bike/ski rack carrier.
Besides previewing the Land Rover brand’s future design language, the Discovery Vision concept is also a test bed for a number of technological innovations. One of these is the ‘transparent bonnet’, which pairs cameras mounted in the grille with head-up display technology to create a virtual overlay and enabling users to see the terrain below the vehicle.
The concept also features remote control off-road driving, predictive infrared laser scanning, a gesture and voice control activated HMI and smart glass that transforms the connectivity of the interior experience. It can also be driven semi-autonomously, both on- and off-road.
We’ll bring you a review of the Land Rover Discovery Vision concept shortly.
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