The new Land Rover Discovery is an able car, but tried too hard to reach in to its history with an off-set rear numberplate. But there is a fix.
It’s a bit over a year since the Land Rover Discovery 5 arrived (although LR don’t call it that – it’s not even the LR5 across the Pond), and there’s no doubt it’s a better car than the Discovery 4.
Not only has it shed a lot of weight, gained some impressive technology and more room – you can actually get real people in the third row now – it is now almost as capable on-road as it is off.
It has, however, got even bigger, and with its spec and ability there is a serious amount of crossover between it and the Range Rover range.
But perhaps the most divisive element about the new Disco is the styling.
Gone is the boxy, angular and very practical shape that’s evolved up to the Discovery 4, and in comes a slick and modern look – really, a Discovery Sport but supersized.
The trouble is, LR has tried to add familiar styling cues to the Disco 5, including the stepped roof and an off-set on the tailgate.
The half-hearted stepped roof is no big deal, but we struggle to get over the sheer oddity of the off-set, asymmetrical tailgate designed to evoke the original. It just looks plain odd, even more so in the flesh, and unlike previous versions it serves no practical purpose whatsoever.
But there is a fix for the Discovery’s odd tailgate.
Startech – an aftermarket design company (one of those Gerry McGovern has vowed to bury) – has come up with a simple ‘fix’ which covers the asymmetrical mess with a simple plate, which makes the back end look sensible (photo above and video below), if a bit boring.
If an aftermarket company sees a market in fixing what really is a design ‘flaw’, how long before Land Rover decide to ‘fix’ it themselves?
The Discovery Tailgate fix will be available from January and costs around £700.