Would You Buy a New 2020 Land Rover Discovery Sport?

So we are in the market for a big 7 seater family car. Always owned Japanese cars (toyota, subaru) so I would like to try something else a little "nicer" in terms of street credibility (yeah yeah, insert the <your buying the badge> comment here).

I've heard an old wives tale that Land Rover reliability is absolutely terrible and you would be insane to buy one.

I've also read online forums where owners have had multiple Discovery Sport vehicles over many years and never had an issue. I'm struggling to really determine the overall experience of actual Land Rover (discovery sport's) owners. Where we live, i see HEAPS of them on the road. They are the soccer mum car of the hills of sydney. I don't see any broken down on the side of the road like i do Audi and BMWs.

I can't find an Australian based owners forum. All i can see is productreview.com.au with some terrible and some great reviews.

Currently tossing up between a 2020 Land Rover Discovery Sport SE Petrol (circa $66k optioned up) or staying comfortable with 7 years warranty Korean designed 2020 Hyundai Sante Fe Highlander (circa $66k STANDARD comes with everything you can imagine except for flying ability). I know what ur thinking, Land Rover vs Hyandai? Yeah i like to explore different ends of the spectrum.

Would you buy a Land Rover Discovery Sport? Or do you have any personal horror stories to share with me based on experience with the Land Rover brand recently??

Update: The VW Tiguan Allspace is the new contender following mentions below by you guys, thank you we will test drive and compare!

Edit: amazed and overwhelmed by the response from the ozbargain community. You guys are a fountain of information, thank you.


Poll Options

  • 82
    Buy the Land Rover and enjoy
  • 44
    Run to the hills
  • 167
    Buy the Hyundai


  • +3 votes

    How many people do you regularly take in the car? How old?

    It looks you you certainly have an itch for a Euro car, and it might be something that you have to tick off the list at some point

    (Side note, well done for not gettin an X4. Just saw a 2yo one try to get traded, and even selling price on a 2yo one vs what they paid was insane! Around $55k to sell a 2yo one, $90k new!)


      crazy. yeah the x4 was for me…but i've still got my old subaru. This car in question is for the wife and she wants something other than japanese…..

      We've also only ever had 2nd hand cars so now we are only looking for NEW! Scary the resale loss on luxury cars hey


        Yeah i've got an X1, out of warranty and out of service plan… im looking at the next 5 years of depreciation and servicing, and if anything else could go wrong, and i'm thinking compared to getting a new Rav4 or CX-5 (i like the hybrid rav, though), i could get a brand new car and it would actually cost me less over the next 5 years than holding onto the X1.

        I do like my X1, just can't justify a new one, and the depreciation on it would be out of control!

        Euro was nice to tick a box, i enjoyed it, but i wouldnt do it again unless our household income was significantly higher than it is now (and in all fairness its not terrible now…)

      • +2 votes

        Comment unpublished. (Store Rep code of conduct)

        Did he try and sell you a Toyota?

    • +1 vote

      OP posted in July that they were expecting their first child in 6 weeks.
      Maybe they have an extended family, but 7 seats is a big vehicle.

  • -2 votes

    Whatever you do, stay away from second hand Range Rovers: https://www.ozbargain.com.au/node/490038 :D

  • +1 vote

    If Hyundai then why not Kia?

  • +9 votes

    I'd buy the Land Rover Discovery Sport. You've got to at least take the plunge once in your life. Let it out of your system. Normally, the first thing that you like is the one for you. There's no point exploring/comparing other options because in the end, you'd wonder "what if".

    • +2 votes

      leaning towards the plunge….however I would like to make an informed plunge !

      • +4 votes


      • +3 votes

        I have a land rover discovery (not sport the bigger version)

        I can tell you that I have zero reliability issues. I personally think Land Rovers are not as sporty as range rovers so the people driving them are constantly speeding and zipping around corners

        The land rover is a rugged and heavy car and the only issue I had when I first got the car was that I speeding fast and stopping quickly and was advised my brake pads were running low.
        You can't drive a heavy car like a coupe

        Get the land rover, you'll be very happy


          How long have you had the vehicle for? Early in their life they are fine but as they age, issues arise.

          • +1 vote

            @TheNachoMan1: 4 years and going strong

            I’ve only had to change rear brake pads once
            Had a yearly service

            So far it’s been cheaper to own than my other cars as service is only yearly


        I have the full blown Discovery as well (the D4). I have had it nearly 10 years and I am thrilled with it. There have been no untoward reliability issues and we are currently using it to tow a 3.2T caravan around Australia on a 6 month trip. Go the Disco Sport - you won't regret it. My next car will be the new Defender

  • +1 vote

    Do you actually need 7 seats?


      Big boot space - yes. Option for 7 seats…nice to have. Why not buy bigger and future proof the next 5 years? My kid will be older, doing sports et my nephews and neices will be older…so yes 7 seats would be perfect for a family car!

      This coming from an owner of a small SUV right now, its frustrating not having enough space


        Yep, I have no issue with the size, was just wondering if you wanted a 7 seater for the seats, or the size, as there are 5 seaters as big or bigger. Land rover reliability and resale is generally poor, they go through brakes and suspension bushes at a rate of knots. Depending on tyre size, tyres can also be fairly expensive.

        Do you need an SUV?


          Wife wants SUV for sure…non negotiable. Easier to get pram in and out and also child/children with the raised height. Ute not an option unfortunately


            @MoonlapseVertigo: Ute wouldn't be a 7 seater anyway, and they are sub par to drive everyday. Are you happy to pay higher service and maintenance costs for a nicer drive? That's really all it comes down to.


          Hmmm. Ford Endura. 5 seat. Similar price.

          • +2 votes

            @bmerigan: What does this have to do with anything? And why would anyone buy a ford endura over pretty much anything else?


              @brendanm: Well there is the Holden equivalent. Same story,

              Really, the Land Rover reliability issue is only an issue if you drive outside the city speed limits. Around town what does it matter?
              Personally, if it is the first kid and you still want seven seats and mostly town driving it’s Santa Fe, Sorrento, ASX , outlander, CX-8, Kodiak or allpass or cR-V.
              With one kid I’d go the CR-V.
              And if it takes a while to learn the cause and you end up with three kids then get the Santa Fe or a CX9.

              Otherwise if you have to have euro, Kodiaq or allpass. Probably allpass for the VW logo.

              Ps: Jeep doesn’t offer a third row, but they have similar servicing issues as LR. And the price of parts!


                @entropysbane: Don't know why you are replying to me or even what you are saying. Of course breaking down is a problem, are you just going to tell the kids its scoot to school week all the time? It's more so the maintenance costs anyway.


                  @brendanm: Parts are the problem with breakdown, and the inconvenience. But they are not unrealisable enough to be a total deal breaker unless you are in the country. However it is a real problem in country areas where no one drives a landdrover and every one drives a Toyota. So the parts aren’t as readily available.

      • +1 vote

        The Skoda Kodiaq sounds perfect for you. Have had mine for a year and absolutely love it.

        • +1 vote

          Agree. Agree!


          I liked Skoda Kodiaq as well but one thing that made it feel odd were the optionals. They always come in package which costs a hefty sum. Would have been good if these came in a la carte instead of packaged

      • +8 votes

        Maybe just get a bus? You Know, just to be safe , and to future proof. What if you child joins a marching band and they need transportation? No one ever thinks of the marching bands…

  • +5 votes

    Its probably best to test drive both and also have a feel of both vehicles. Yes the Brand snobbery would be a deciding factor but remember you will be inside the vehicle more than outside so you want to make sure it fulfills all your needs as well. I have an Audi and a Hyundai, but funnily enough the Hyundai has some features more suited to our climate than the Audi like cooling seats which trust me is a god send during Summer!


    Great cars, but over priced with bamboozling (+ expensive) options list, and you can read horror stories about people who got stuck with lemons. I think LR quality has gone down hill. They look really nice and drive well, but they just don't seem to be all that reliable. Wouldn't let it put you off if you love it though. I'd never buy a new car, too much to lose. If you don't need 4WD, then take a look at the Peugeot 3008/5008. That is by far the best value/looking SUV on offer right now IMO, if you don't mind the poor resale. Very reliable also.

  • +7 votes

    "I've heard an old wives tale that Land Rover reliability is absolutely terrible and you would be insane to buy one."

    Believe me they aren't old wives tails.

  • +2 votes

    Look at the offerings from Kia as well, that 7 year warranty is very attractive, and I see in trade talk they might push it out to 10 years if too many others jump on the 7 yr warranty. I was for 30+ years in the local design and manufacture section of the big 2!. There is no way any manufacturer would offer a 7 yr+ warranty unless they had rock solid confidence of their design,engineering and manufacturing processes - think about it!.

    I had a bit of a brain snap and considered a Range Rover Evoque but after having a long look at comment and highly competent Auto Journo's, some I know personally and respect their road tests, I decided to avoid the purchase. Decided to buy a awd SLI Sportage diesel and it has been a great purchase. Almost never been near the dealership except for service and a very minor recall upgrade for a door lock weathershield. So Land Rover have some great Design staff, BUT the engineering and build is another story. Good luck with the decision.


      Hyundai has also started offering 7yr warranty….

      • +1 vote

        I know…this 7 year warranty offering is too hard to look away. I also want my wife to drive in a flashy car. Why are 1st world problems so difficult !

        • +2 votes

          What does your wife want to drive?

          Most women (and men) that I know just want something reliable to get them where they want to go. Then they just want to park the car without giving a toss what happens to it.

          Does your wife really want to drive a Toorak tractor?


            @brad1-8tsi: The discussion at hand is:

            1. Do we want to spend circa $60k on a Korean car OR
            2. Should we spend $60k on something with a bit more lux appeal and brand snobbery and see what it’s like

            Regardless we want brand new as it will be our first ever..(I know the whole depreciation thing blah blah)

            • +1 vote

              @MoonlapseVertigo: If a flashy car is all you need and don't care about reliability or long-term support, lease an euro trash and get rid of it before the warranty runs out.

              Yes, you'd take a good lashing from depreciation blah blah.


              @MoonlapseVertigo: Theyre different cars though, no? THe 60k korean is a larger car than the 60k euro.

              PS factor in your running costs - $1200ish a year for LR service, or $300ish a year for the Korean - thats an extra $4500ish

              And then yeah, the depreciation… could work out $15-20k out of pocket difference over the 5 years between them considering resale?

        • +1 vote

          I also want my wife to drive in a flashy car

          Does your wife actually want this?

          Even if she does, time to wear the pants and make a smart decision.


          Just sell the car after 3/4 years and the 7 year warranty won’t matter. Ok maybe a drop in resale because out of warranty… but still, this is something you’ll use a lot. Test drive both. No use in buying something you don’t enjoy.

  • +10 votes

    Mate who deals in land rovers…drives a landcruiser. That should tell you enough! In 3 years he had: 2 new engines, 4 new driveshafts, 8 wheels bearings, new brakes which warped, two gearboxes and a cracked chassis member, along with a new ECU and battery earth faults. On the landcruiser he did 280k in 2 and half years with oil changes and the standard service intervals, towing up to the limit! He only sold it because it wasn't 'cool' compared to a land rover (and now drives anything he wants as he can! You'll be the coolest looking person in the breakdown lane!

    Old wives tales have a grain of truth, see the story of the guy who had hear about Jeeps but STILL bought a grand Cherokee, it's the financial equivalent of the Darwin awards!

    Hyundai, boring but reliable.
    Land Rover, wouldn't touch it with yours mate! They've even bad in the country they're made in where spares are bountiful, let alone here!


      280k in 2.5 years.. what the heck..

      Was he driving around the country every day?


        Average of about 300km per day. Not unfeasible if you live 100km+ from a town or city that you need to travel to regularly.


        using it to travel across the whole of the UK to buy and sell used landrovers (hence the full capacity towing on the way back). Yes he's a car dealer and back then did mega mileages, now he employs a few people to do it for him, and drives whatever takes his fancy! his staff back then drove it some of those days as well.

    • +1 vote

      I can't imagine what a person has to do to a car to break all that.

  • +1 vote

    I can't find an Australian based owners forum.

    Try some Facebook groups. Theres a FB group for basically everything these days, especially cars.

    My brother bought the Santa Fe and is very happy with it.

    • +15 votes

      Shits me how everything has moved to FB. Only have a fake profile for this reason, but I still find the quality of discussions to be much lower than forums and hate the way everything is organised. Forums are a far superior form of communication.

      • +3 votes

        Agreed 100%

        I’ve tried posting some questions recently in my car forum and get nothing. Ask the same question in the FB group and get 60 replies in 3 hours. But mixed in with the FB replies are lots of macho in jokes and whatever BS you get.

  • +5 votes

    I'd buy a Rangie as long as you can live with the following:

    Sell before 5 years old.


    Budget about $5000 / year maintenance / repairs after 5 years. It won't be that every year but it will average out at around that.

  • +2 votes

    If you're worried you can always get the extended warranty on the Discovery Sport too


      Any idea how much extra this would amount to?

      • +1 vote

        They have a number of options depending on how many years and km you want to extend it to.

        2 years time only (up to 100,000 kms total odometer reading) for $1600


          Sounds like a no brainer to do that - even just for the resale peace of mind. A buyer buying with warranty still there is a big relief.

  • +4 votes

    Suzuki mighty Boy… magic vehicle

  • +3 votes

    Australian Land rover forum:

    These guys/girls know everything there is about all that is Land Rover.

    I frequent the older Series pages but not the newer models

  • +1 vote

    I was looking at one for my wife, we test drove and everything. I liked it more than alot of others in that segment and price. Take it with the 5 year warranty and maintain it properly reliability should not be too much of an issue. I have decided to maybe hold off for the new defender myself, I dont think its a huge jump to the evoke either.

  • +14 votes

    As an ex-Land Rover employee… hell no :D


      Can you elaborate pegaxs?

      • +46 votes

        I'm glad you asked… *inhales*

        For the record, I worked for a Land Rover dealer as a technician/Leading hand/service advisor. I worked there from when Land Rover was owned by Rover, then sold to BMW and then parted out and sold to Ford.

        Off the bat, let's just say that there was never any shortage of work. Between the oil leaks, coolant leaks, water ingress issues, rattles, gearbox and transfer case rebuilds, electrical problems, poorly fitted panels, chassis cracking, body cracking… and the list goes on, we were always busy. The only time there was any sign of relief was when BMW took ownership of the company for a short time and it was like they changed overnight. The quality was second to none. It was on a par with BMW's own vehicles.

        Well… then they parted Rover out, kept Mini and sold Jag and Land Rover to Ford. And lets face it, they may as well have given the manufacture back to Rover Group. The only reliable parts on the vehicles were the left over tech from what BMW supplied to them, such as the engines and moving from Lucas electrical gear.

        The issues were always parts supply. Even small, common type items were never in storage and vehicles were quite routinely taken from storage and stripped for parts. And I needn't get started on pricing for these parts.

        Warranty was always an issue. As soon as that magic day dropped, your warranty ended. We have people on their 3rd or 4th Land Rover who were coming in for very common issues only just weeks out of warranty and Land Rover just didn't want a bar of it. The after sales support from the Aust. importer/representative left a lot to be desired.

        Now, today, Land Rover is owned by a shell company that hides who really owns them. They will tell you it is owned by "Jaguar Land Rover", when in fact, the owners are Tata Motors. Because of the very average build quality associated with Indian made vehicles and Tata, they made up another company that people would feel more comfortable owning a vehicle from. Hence, "Jaguar Land Rover" was born.

        Next is the badge trading shit that goes on. It isn't a "Discovery Sport" it's a "re-badged Freelander". it isn't a "Range Rover Evoke", it's a "re-badged Freelander". The problem with that is, no one ever bought Freelanders. They were possibly one of the worst selling vehicles Rover introduced. They were horrible shit boxes with more problem than we had answers for. A truly terrible vehicle. I lost count of how many engines and gear boxes I replaced in "Freelanders". So, to offset this horrible stigma they had attached to them, The Freelander badge was dropped and converted to "Discovery Sport" and "Range Rover Evoke."

        Also realise that these vehicles come from places you wouldn't normally associate with building quality cars. China (along side Chery. Yes "that" Chery), India and Brazil. Sure, some are made in the UK, but that would more likely be "domestic market" units. Ours here would more likely come from India and China due to shipping costs.

        Sure, If you are cruising around the neighbourhood and you want that street cred that a green oval badge can bring you, sure, have at it. But know, under that green oval hides the heart of an absolute shitbox. A company that has been passed on through several owners because they cant keep up with it. Know that the resale value will fall faster than a $5 strippers knickers at a $10 party. You are paying for a badge and that is it. The rest is made in India/China. They are paying 3rd world production costs and selling at European quality prices.

        So, if you're happy forking out $66k on what is essential the re-badging of a failed line of products, then be my guest.

        • +4 votes

          holy smokes…literally. Absolutely insane. The truth behind the manufacturing in 3rd world kind of changes the view of the green badge. Very concerning for my wife and kids to be inside a vehicle made in a sweat shop style manufacturing process is concerning.

          I think you may have just provided me with the level of insight I was after….Chinese/Indian cars and reliability don’t go together…so it’s like buying a MG…

          Thanks again for your detailed response.

        • +4 votes

          Wow, way to put to rest my very, very faint desire to drive a Range Rover one day, lmao! Great incite.

          • +2 votes

            @ThithLord: Look, don't get me wrong. If you can afford one of these vehicles new, I say, have at it. The Range Rover (Real one, not the "Evoke") is a stunning car to drive. If I had that kind of cash, to be honest, I would buy one. But, you have to be prepared to live with it, and when warranty ends, you have to be ready to part with it.

            Buy it because you want it, not because it has a green oval badge and some delusional street cred. They don't. They have a huge depreciation problem, because out of warranty, these things are a nightmare to fix both time wise and parts availability/price wise. People buy them because they are a status symbol. Expensive to buy, expensive to service, expensive to repair and worth a pittance at resale time.

            They are money pits that rich people like to brag over how much they have thrown down the endless Land Rover well.

        • +1 vote

          Just talked some sense into me aswell thanks!


          Also realise that these vehicles come from places you wouldn't normally associate with building quality cars. China (along side Chery. Yes "that" Chery), India and Brazil.

          Isn't Hyundai's sold to Australia made in India as well ? In my college (probably 12 years back) we went to Hyundai's manufacturing plant(industrial visit) and they made left hand drive and right hand drive cars in the same production line with a capacity to roll out 5000 cars in a month.

          Correct me if I'm wrong.

          • +4 votes

            @Killerbala: I guess it's like buying mobile phones. You have iPhones that are made in China, then you have $49 smartphones with indecipherable names made in the same place. It all comes down to the owners to tell the manufactures what quality they want their units built at.

            That being said, Jag and Land Rover are owned by Tata. Not really a company synonymous with quality and reliability. To me, it sounds more like a case of "we cant sell Tata vehicles, so, why don't we buy a well known, established brand and slap it on our vehicles…"

            The problem with Land Rover owners, they all try and tell you that they are built in England, and lets face it, they aren't. But then again, the Pommies are well renowned for turning out quality cars such as… Rover, Leyland, Morris, Vauxhall, Triumph, Land Rover, MG, Jaguar… etc. All known for their exemplary build quality and outstanding reliability…

            As for Hyundai, they have manufacturing plants all over the world. But it comes down to what quality controls they have in place. I don't mind where a Hyundai is made, because if it is made in China/India/Thailand/Mexico/Brazil (etc), I am paying a price reflective of that. What I think is a bit cheeky is that some manufactures hide their identity behind misleading names, get their cars made in 3rd world countries and charge prices like they are all built in a factory out of the UK. It's an Oppo phone sold at iPhone prices…


          Wow, I knew Jaguar Land Rover was owned by Tata, but newer thought they were made in India/China. My uncle used to own an old skool defender(which was awesome) and I was always fond of Land Rover.

          • +1 vote

            @Trioboy: Yep. I loved the old Defenders… Right up till they replaced the almost indestructible 300TDi with the TD5 engines. The older Defenders you could fix with 2 sticks and a rock. I would not go outback and have my life depend on the newer Defenders.

            As for the new 2020 Land Rover Defender They are having a bit of a laugh, aren't they? That should be called something like "Discovery Classic". It looks nothing like a Defender


          Those issues you described… wouldn’t you see that working in the service department of any car maker?

          • +2 votes

            @cooni: Safe to say that most mechanics know which brands have worse issues than others. No brand is exempt from issues, but mechanics can very easily form opinions based on the vehicles they see and deal with week in week out. They can see trends etc.

            I know based on resale values and trade-in values from my job, and can spot trends of what cars to avoid based on what the market and other dealers dictate, based on their own experiences.

            In the same way you'd ask a Barista as to whether another cafe's coffee is good or not, I'd trust a mechanic of 10+ years if a car is good or not.


          Not to discount what you've seen, I am sure you've seen the worst, but I feel every mechanic at a dealership spends his/her time fixing cars under warranty. Wouldn't mechanics at EVERY brand have seen engines replaced?

          So anyway, what's common between a Freelander and a Disco Sport? Seems to me it would be all new and thus Freelander issues would have no bearing on the Disco Sport.

          I like the brand (you can tell), but I am unsure I would buy one.


            @bmerigan: It’s not all new. It’s the old model rebodied. It’s still based off the last generation Ford Mondeo platform. It has some mechanical updates like the newer Ignium engines (but the Freelander got those EOL too). It’s still a raised saloon that can’t go off-road.


          Thank you for the details from the mid-1990s when the Rover Group was bought by BMW.

          Land Rover do have a bad rep for reliability. However, there's absolutely no effort to hide the fact that Tata Motors owns JLR. It's similar to when Ford owned these marques. At the time Ford made a division called Premier Automotive Group to own JLR (and others).

          If anyone did even a little bit of research they'd find out that the Disco Sport is the successor to the Freelander. It's built on a different platform to the Freelander though and has nothing in common to it.

          The Discovery Sport that is sold in Australia comes from the UK and not from an Indian and Chinese plant. Contrary to what you've said, the Indian and Chinese made cars are the "domestic market" units. If the OP wants to make sure, just check the plate in the engine bay or on the A-pillar. AFAIK, none of the Jags or Land Rovers sold here are made in India or China

          My understanding is that the quality of these cars have increased markedly from the bad old days but not to the point of a Japanese, Korean or even a German level.

          Oh and BTW, Volvo is owned by the Chinese company, Geely Motors, "not really a company synonymous with quality and reliability"!!


          Wow… After reading your comment I would probably go dunk my head in icy (Perrier) water the next time I feel like even looking at a LR/RR. Thanks

    • +16 votes

      The Rover is a beautiful vehicle.

      LOL. That's subjective.

      I own an (Rover) MG ZTT, built by BMW

      So, it's a diesel then?

      it is a beautiful car with minimal issues.

      Again, beautiful is subjective. And minimal issues. You don't drive it often then.

      Most your Rover buyers buy new, affording you full warranty.

      Because they need it.

      They sell on the vehicles once the warranty ends.

      For obvious reasons. They don't want things going wrong with it that they will have to pay for, which is inevitable.

      Look, people are just scared of prestige vehicles.

      For good reason. Resale for one. Service costs are another. Spare parts costs and availability are others, just to name a few.

      They prefer the safety of a Japanese or Korean cheap car which may last you only a few years.

      Japanese and Korean cars still outlast most european cars and are significantly cheaper to service, maintain and often cost about 1/2 the price of a comparable Euro car.

      The Rover is built to last. Treat it kind and it will treat you kind.

      If it was "built to last" why is there a need to "treat it kind"? And no. I would buy a Land Rover over a Rover. Hell, I would buy a Great Wall or a Mahindra over a Rover. If my only choice was a Rover or some old worn out 2nd hand runners, I would take the runners.

      I've owned Jaguars where once again the majority of "average" people would feel too scared to own.

      I worked for a Jaguar dealership. There is a reason why people are "scared" to own Jaguar cars, especially "out of warranty" Jags.

      Take the plunge into the prestige market.

      Please, we need more "My *insert_Euro_trashwagon_here* has an issue and the dealer doesn't care…" threads on here.

      You deserve it. You will feel great.

      Well, right up until it all starts to go pear shaped and the warranty ends.

      They are of cutting edge technology

      No they aren't. My 2019 Corolla probably has the same amount of tech in it as an average comparable Euro car.

      and you have your warranty safety net.

      Cause without it, your F'd in the A.

      Do it…. do it….do it

      Yes, please, do it. We need the comedy :D

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