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The Land Rover LR4 comes to the U.S. market as the all-new successor to the LR3. The old LR3, called Discovery 3 in other markets, won more than 100 awards for its design when new, and the LR4 is better.
The new LR4 and the more expensive Range Rover Sport share platforms, drive systems, long-travel independent suspension, and powertrains, but the Land Rover LR4 carries less standard equipment and is generally a more practical, less costly weapon for all-weather, all-terrain driving. It is also the Land Rover you need if you want to carry up to seven on a trip, because the big Range Rover and the Range Rover Sport are restricted to five seats only, while the LR4 has the option of a seven-seat layout.
The LR4 interior shares much of its technology and some of its design with the pricier Range Rover Sport, which we count as a good thing.
To accommodate the third row of seats, it is more than five inches longer in wheelbase than the Sport, which generally means a smoother ride, but it is similar in overall length, width and height, an inch or two here and there.
The LR4 competes in the crowded midsize luxury sport-utility vehicle segment, one of the largest and fastest-growing segments in the industry. LR4's direct market competitors include the Acura MDX, the Lexus RX 350, the Mercedes-Benz GLK, the Audi Q5, and the BMW X5.