Land Rover has been demonstrating the towing capabilities of its vehicles since way back in 1989 when the original Discovery fitted with the then-new 200TDI diesel engine pulled several carriages. Last year, the Discovery Sport armed with a four-cylinder, 2.0-liter Ingenium diesel engine successfully towed three luxury train carriages that had a combined weight of more than 100 tons (200,000 pounds) or roughly the same as a Boeing 757. Now, Land Rover has decided to up the ante by pulling a whopping 110 tons (220,000 lbs).
The tool of choice was the 2018 Discovery equipped with a larger six-cylinder, 3.0-liter Td6 engine producing 254 horsepower and 600 Newton-meters (443 pound-feet) of torque. The Australian Outback was selected to showcase the SUV’s capabilities by towing a road train that had no less than seven trailers and a 12-ton tractor unit.
Stretching at 100 meters (328 feet), the behemoth required special permits in order to be legally towed along a closed section of the Lasseter Highway. Local regulations stipulate only up to four trailers are allowed and the maximum length must not surpass 53.5 meters (175.5 feet). The Discovery did not go through any changes as it used the standard configuration of the diesel engine, along with the same eight-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel-drive system. It was hooked up to the massive road train by using a factory-fitted tow bar attachment.
Interestingly, the road train itself actually tipped the scales at 100 tons, but inside it had 10 tons of ballast in order to reach the impressive 110-ton weight necessary to beat the aforementioned performance achieved by the Discovery Sport in 2016. It pulled the road train for 16 kilometers (10 miles) and managed to reach a top speed of 27 mph (44 kph) during its unusual journey.
All these efforts have been made to signal the arrival of the 2018MY Discovery, now available with a four-cylinder Ingenium 2.0-liter gasoline engine rated at 296 horsepower and 295 lb-ft (400 Nm). The new model year brings along the latest 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and an updated TouchPro infotainment with a 10-inch touchscreen. Land Rover has also added its second-generation head-up display and Cabin Air Ionization, which is making its debut on the Discovery to boost the air quality inside.
Source: Land Rover
Gallery: 2018 Land Rover Discovery tows 110-ton road train
LAND ROVER DISCOVERY TOWS 110-TONNE ROAD TRAIN ACROSS AUSTRALIAN OUTBACK
- Discovery tows 100m-long road train weighing 110 tonnes, as Land Rover announces latest technology updates
- Epic feat achieved along 16km of the Lasseter Highway in Australia’s Northern Territory to demonstrate Discovery’s award-winning towing capability
- Discovery features market-leading towing tech: Advanced Tow Assist helps drivers complete tricky reversing manoeuvres by calculating the necessary steering inputs
- Updated Discovery now available to order with a 12.3-inch Interactive Driver Display TFT instrument cluster, Air Cabin Ionisation and a 300PS Ingenium petrol engine
- Watch Discovery pull a road train here: https://youtube/9DsK0SH0h9s
- Customers can configure a Discovery at: https://www.landrover.co.uk
Northern Territory, Australia, 20 September 2017: The Land Rover Discovery has taken on a 110-tonne road train and the Australian Outback… and won. The sight of a seven-trailer truck being pulled by an SUV sounds far-fetched – but that’s exactly what happened when Land Rover put the Discovery to the ultimate towing test.
Land Rover completed the impressive display of towing capability by pulling a 100m road train in the remote Northern Territory to announce the arrival of the 2018 model year Discovery.
The Discovery Td6 has a maximum certified towing capacity of 3,500kg on public roads* but successfully towed a 110-tonne road train 16km along a closed section of the Lasseter Highway, thanks to its 258PS 3.0-litre diesel engine and four-wheel-drive traction.
Road trains of up to four trailers are only permitted in Australia’s vast Outback regions and typically carry fuel, mineral ore and cattle between remote rural communities. Strict regulations limit their length to 53.5m so Land Rover obtained special permission to pull seven trailers and the 12-tonne tractor unit – retained to operate the hydraulic brakes fitted to the trailers.
John Bilato, Managing Director of haulage specialist G&S Transport, took the wheel for the epic pull. He said: “When Land Rover first got in touch, I didn’t think the vehicle would be able to do it, so I was amazed by how easily the standard Discovery pulled a 110-tonne road train. And the smoothness of the gearchanges under that amount of load was genuinely impressive. These road trains are the most efficient form of road haulage on the planet and using the Discovery made this the most economical of all.”
The extreme test was carried out using a Discovery Td6 and is the latest in a series of impressive towing demonstrations completed by the Discovery family. At its 1989 launch, the original Discovery I was used to pull a train and last year the Discovery Sport premium compact SUV towed a trio of rail carriages 85ft above the Rhine River.
Quentin Spottiswoode, Land Rover Product Engineer, said: “Towing capability has always been an important part of Discovery DNA and the raw weight of the road train tells only half the story here. Pulling a rig and seven trailers, with the rolling resistance of so many axles to overcome, is a huge achievement. We expected the vehicle to do well but it passed this test with flying colours, hitting 44km/h along its 16km route.”
The Discovery used a standard eight-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel drive system and was hooked up to the road train using a factory-fitted tow bar attachment. The road train itself was even carrying 10-tonnes of ballast in order to hit the magic 110-tonne weight mark.
With 600Nm of torque, the Td6 is well suited to pulling heavy loads. The 258PS 3.0-litre single-turbo engine features low-pressure exhaust recirculation and a two-stage oil pump for improved responses, refinement and efficiency. As a result, the diesel model delivers CO2 emissions of 189g/km and fuel economy of 39.2mpg (7.2l/100 km).
2018 model year enhancements
Discovery is now available with Jaguar Land Rover’s efficient 300PS four-cylinder Ingenium petrol engine. The advanced powerplant uses Continuously Variable Valve Lift (CVVL) technology to optimise efficiency and a twin-scroll turbocharger with ceramic bearings for smooth responses and reduced friction. The new engine produces 400Nm of torque and CO2emissions from 222g/km**.
In addition, Land Rover’s premium SUV gains new technologies including an Interactive Driver Display TFT instrument cluster. The state-of-the-art high-resolution panel provides contemporary graphics that create the impression of 3D surfaces with exceptional clarity and allow the driver to personalise the visual display around the two main dials.
All derivatives of the latest Discovery also feature Touch Pro infotainment with Jaguar Land Rover’s state-of-the-art 10-inch touchscreen interface on the centre console. Digital connectivity is enhanced with the introduction of 4G WiFi, providing superior connection speeds for up to eight mobile devices on the move.
Second-generation head-up display technology also provides a full-colour display and wider functionality, even projecting 4x4 information and improved navigation displays onto the windscreen ahead of the driver, while Cabin Air Ionisation is available on Discovery for the first time, delivering improved interior air quality for enhanced passenger wellbeing.
The Discovery’s Advanced Tow Assist technology takes the stress out of reversing by providing responsive trajectory lines on the rear camera feed to the central touchscreen. This allows the driver to steer the vehicle using the rotary Terrain Response 2 controller on the centre console while the system calculates the steering inputs required to achieve the desired outcome.
In addition to Advanced Tow Assist, the Discovery’s award-winning towing capability also includes:
- Trailer Light Test – allows customers to test their trailer lights without outside assistance
- Rear Height Assist – allows the driver to lower and raise the height of the rear of the vehicle to making hitching a trailer simple
- Hitch Assist – guides the driver to the trailer hitch point by displaying trajectory lines on the touchscreen feed to simplify the process
- Nose Load Measurement – allows customers to quickly check the weight being applied to the vehicle tow bar to avoid dangerous overloading
- Trailer Stability Assist – enhances safety on the move by detecting trailer sway and reduces the speed of the vehicle to restore control to the driver
* maximum permissible towing weight for Discovery Td6 is 3,500kg (up to 3,720kg in NAS (Si6) specification).