Jaguar Land Rover's Special Vehicle Operations has taken the Discovery SUV and turned it into the new SVX off-road special.
Unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the British carmaker says the SVX is the “ultimate” iteration of the Discovery, boasting improved off-road performance and a supercharged V8 engine.
JLR SVO is also responsible for the Range Rover Sport SVR and Range Rover SVAutobiography.
While the SVR is the brand’s ultimate interpretation for on-road performance and the SVAutobiography the pinnacle of luxury, so the SVX is focused on off-road capability.
To that end, it features a raft of upgrades to make it more rugged. The brand’s Hydraulic Active Roll Control (H-ARC), is added to the SVX and the brand claims it’s able to both improve wheel articulation and body control while reducing body roll to make off-roading a more comfortable experience.
Approach and departure angles have been improved on the SVX, over the regular Discovery, thanks to revised air-suspension. New long-travel dampers, revised suspension knuckles and larger 20-inch alloy wheels, shod with 275/55 Goodyear Wrangler tyres all contribute to a higher ground clearance; although Land Rover hasn’t revealed exactly how much higher yet.
While it may be billed as a go-anywhere off-roader, Land Rover has opted to fit the SVX exclusively with the brand’s 5.0-litre supercharged V8 engine, instead of a more efficient turbo diesel that would offer a longer range.
The V8 is good for 386kW of power and 625Nm of torque so the SVX should have no trouble with performance, either on- or off-road. It’s paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission and two-speed transfer box that has been specially calibrated for the SVX.
“The SVX product line gives us a fantastic opportunity to deliver the ultimate Land Rover all-terrain capability in a dynamic and distinctive manner, creating a rugged and versatile SUV that the whole family will love: effortless, unstoppable and connected, whatever the terrain,” SVO Director, Mark Stanton, said.
“Discovery SVX is designed to reward off-road driving enthusiasts with the next level of all-terrain capability, without compromising comfort and practicality.”
To visually differentiate it from the rest of the Discovery range the SVX has been given a tougher look. While the model on display at Frankfurt is a “production preview” the showroom version is expected to have a similar look.
There are chunkier, more aggressive front and rear bumpers that give an obvious styling point of difference to the rest of the Discovery range. It also gets anti-glare finish on the bonnet, integrated light bar on the roof and winch built into the rear bumper.
“The combination of design excellence and engineering integrity inherent in every Land Rover is the foundation of everything we do,” Land Rover’s chief design officer, Gerry McGovern, said. “The Discovery SVX reinforces Land Rover’s unrivalled reputation for building vehicles with true all-terrain capability for customers who desire the ultimate in off-road performance.”
The Discovery SVX will go into production in 2018 with Australian deliveries due to begin in the third quarter of the same year. Pricing will be announced by the end of 2017.
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