LONDON -- JLR (formerly Jaguar Land Rover) is working to define a future role for its slow-selling Discovery brand, which has been eclipsed by the success of the automaker’s hot-selling Defender.
Demand for the Discovery and Discovery Sport SUVs has dropped steeply, while the Defender has become the automaker’s bestseller after its relaunch in 2020 as a more luxurious and high-tech vehicle compared with the original utilitarian post-Second World War model.
First introduced in 1989 as a bridge between the Defender off-roader and the upscale Range Rover, the Discovery’s appeal has waned in recent years.
“There is no hiding: Discovery is not performing to the same level as the other two [Range Rover and Defender],” JLR CEO Adrian Mardell told Autocar magazine.
Mardell said a team is now working on a definition that would help the company successfully reposition Discovery within JLR’s so-called House of Brands.
“We need to create a design and business model that is going to be successful,” Mardell said. “We have not given the team the time to do that yet, because we were focusing on the Defender. Now we have moved people into the Discovery house.”
JLR has reorganized its product portfolio into four brands – Range Rover, Defender, Discovery and Jaguar.
The Discovery was Land Rover’s worst-selling model in the quarter ended June 30 with global sales of 4,354 units. The Discovery Sport, related to the Range Rover Evoque compact, was Land Rover’s second slowest-selling model in the quarter with 7,022 units sold.
The Defender was the JLR’s biggest seller with 27,616 units sold, company figures show.