The Land Rover LR3 is the third and the second last generation in the Land Rover Discovery line. The Land Rover Discovery itself is a mid-size sport utility vehicle manufactured by the British automaker Land Rover since 1989. Its first generation shared the chassis and drive-train with the Range Rover and became the only Discovery generation equipped with the 4-cylinder engine. The vehicles were available in a 3- and a 5-door version, both fitted with 5 seats. The Land Rover Discovery entered the American market in the 1994 model year. And ten years later, in 2004, the Land Rover unveiled the Discovery 3, known in North America as the Land Rover LR3, which was the first vehicle in the Land Rover lineup to be provided with a rear locking deferential.
The Land Rover LR3 introduced a minimalistic style, retaining the main Discovery features, such as steeply-raked windscreen and the stepped roof-line. It was offered with the integrated body frame and ladder-frame chassis that ensured balance between performance and agility. The vehicle came with a full independent suspension. On the United States market the Land Rover LR3 was available with the following engine options: 4.4L V8 petrol engine of 300 hp or 4.0L SOHC Ford V6 petrol engine of 216 hp. A 6-speed automatic transmission came standard. The new electronic systems included dynamic stability control, four wheel electronic traction control, and Terrain Response system that allowed to choose the ride height, throttle response, traction control, and transmission settings. The Terrain Response system won the Popular Science Award in 2005.
The 2009 land Rover LR3 is powered with 4.4L V8 petrol engine of 300hp, mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. The permanent four-wheel drive and adjustable air-spring suspension come standard. Two-row seating is standard and the three-row one is optional on HSE and HSE LUX trim levels. The main exterior parts include a monocoque structure and rectangular rear windows. The short overhang and split tailgate echo the flagship model, i.e. the Range Rover. The safety features are anti-lock brakes, electronic parking brake, front and side curtain airbags. The Land Rover LR3/Discovery 3 has already won 97 international awards, among them 2005 North American Truck of the Year and 2005 Sport/Utility of the Year Award of the Motor Trend magazine. Such a great amount of international awards for just one four-wheel drive production model is reputed to be a world record.
Representing a taste of the new era in off-road panache` is the Land Rover LR3. A fistful of power and performance back up the LR3, and its towing capacity rivals some of its full-size SUV brethren. The second and third row seats can fold down allowing for more interior cargo space than ever before, upping the notch on what this vehicle is all about in the first place: luxury off-road capability. And that is where it truly delivers, as the LR3 pounds the gravel and rocks with little effort, giving the driver a smooth ride no matter where the wind blows. The LR3 is a venerable icon for all midsize SUVs with muscle.
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