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For enhanced safety, the front and middle seat shoulder belts of the Land Rover Discovery have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The GMC Yukon XL doesn’t offer pretensioners for the middle seat belts.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Discovery. But it costs extra on the Yukon XL.
When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Discovery’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.
The Discovery offers an optional Surround Camera System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Yukon XL only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
The Discovery’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
For better protection of the passenger compartment, the Discovery uses safety cell construction with a three-dimensional high-strength frame that surrounds the passenger compartment. It provides extra impact protection and a sturdy mounting location for door hardware and side impact beams. The Yukon XL uses a body-on-frame design that has no frame members above the floor of the vehicle.
Both the Discovery and the Yukon XL have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.
The Discovery comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty that covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Yukon XL’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.
The Discovery’s 6 year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Yukon XL runs out after 100,000 miles.
For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the Discovery has an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of the engines in the Yukon XL.
The Discovery’s 3.0 turbo V6 diesel produces 60 lbs.-ft. more torque (443 vs. 383) than the Yukon XL’s standard 5.3 V8.
On the EPA test cycle the Discovery Td6 gets better fuel mileage than the Yukon XL 4WD (21 city/26 hwy vs. 14 city/21 hwy).
On the EPA test cycle the Discovery supercharged V6 gets better city fuel mileage than the Yukon XL 4x4 with its standard engine (16 city/21 hwy vs. 14 city/21 hwy).
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Discovery’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Yukon XL doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
For better stopping power the Discovery’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Yukon XL:
The Discovery stops shorter than the Yukon XL:
60 to 0 MPH
The Discovery’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Yukon XL’s optional 45 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Discovery has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the Yukon XL SLE/SLT Standard Edition/SLT.
For superior ride and handling, the Land Rover Discovery has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The GMC Yukon XL has a solid rear axle, with a non-independent rear suspension.
The Discovery has standard front and rear stabilizer bars that help keep the Discovery flat and controlled during cornering. The Yukon XL’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.
For better maneuverability, the Discovery’s turning circle is 2.4 feet tighter than the Yukon XL’s (40.6 feet vs. 43 feet).
For greater off-road capability the Discovery has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Yukon XL (8.7 vs. 7.9 inches), allowing the Discovery to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The Discovery Air Suspension’s minimum ground clearance is 3.2 inches higher than on the Yukon XL (11.1 vs. 7.9 inches).
The Land Rover Discovery may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 900 to 1050 pounds less than the GMC Yukon XL.
The Discovery is 2 feet, 5.3 inches shorter than the Yukon XL, making the Discovery easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.
Unibody construction lowers the Discovery’s center of gravity significantly without reducing ground clearance. This contributes to better on the road handling and better off-road performance and stability. In addition, unibody construction makes the chassis stiffer, improving handling and reducing squeaks and rattles. The Yukon XL uses body-on-frame design instead.
Flexibility is maximized at the game, campground or a drive-in theatre in the Discovery when its optional tailgating rear seats are deployed, allowing people to sit facing out of the liftgate. (Do not use while vehicle is in motion.) The Yukon XL doesn’t offer tailgating seats.
The Discovery has a standard third row seat that folds flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.
The Discovery’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Yukon XL’s (8201 vs. 6000 pounds).
Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Yukon XL SLT Standard/SLT/Denali, the Discovery HSE/HSE Luxury has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position (with optional power wheel adjuster) and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.
The Discovery’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Yukon XL’s parking brake has to released manually.
The Discovery’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Yukon XL’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.
If the windows are left open on the Discovery the driver can close them all from a distance using the remote. The driver of the Yukon XL can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The Discovery has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.
Heated windshield washer nozzles are optional on the Discovery to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.
In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The Discovery offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer headlight washers.
To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the Discovery HSE/HSE Luxury offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer cornering lights.
The Discovery offers optional heated front, second and third row seats that keep the driver and passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. GMC doesn’t offer heated seats in the third row of the Yukon XL.
Optional air-conditioned the front and second row seats keep the Discovery’s passengers comfortable and take the sting out of hot leather in summer. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats for the second row.
The Discovery’s Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Yukon XL doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
The Discovery will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Discovery will retain 47.79% to 49.86% of its original price after five years, while the Yukon XL only retains 45.69% to 47.77%.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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