How Deep Can a Land Rover Discovery Go in Water?


Land Rover is a brand that has been known for its off-road performance for many years. However, lately, they have been starting to tune some of their vehicles to be better when it comes to on road performance.

The Discovery is a vehicle that can do both pretty well. While many other vehicles fail and can only work well off-road or on-road, the Discovery is actually tuned to do both with passing grades.

However, one of the biggest obstacles for a vehicle when off-roading is a body of water. Whether you are passing through a stream or some standing water, many people want to know how deep can the Land Rover Discovery go in water?

While most owners would probably be quite content to avoid any kind of water when it comes to their vehicle, there is another type of car owner who would love to attack the water. It can happen more regularly than you think when you are off-roading that you come across some kind of stream that you need to cross.

Other situations can simply happen when there is flooding or especially in coastal areas. These situations can be fairly dangerous in a normal vehicle, however the Land Rover brand is known for their water performance.

As a matter of fact, you can actually find “challenges” online where some Land Rover owners try to take their vehicles through as much water as possible.

That’s not going to be necessarily recommended as often times you’ll see these challenges end with all kinds of water leaving the actual passenger area, they can get pretty intense. So what is reasonable for the amount of water that a Land Rover Discovery can handle? Let’s take a look.

How Deep Can the Discovery Go In Water?

So, how deep can the Land Rover Discover go in water? The Land Rover Discovery can manage anywhere between up to 20 inches and 30 inches of water. That is the official Land Rover Discovery Sport wading depth. As with all things, this may depend on the conditions and the exact model of your vehicle.

If you are looking for manufacturer recommendations, you should check the manual that came with your vehicle.

How Deep Can a Land Rover Discovery Go in Water?

However, there are a lot of different strategies that can help you get the most out of driving your Discovery through any kind of water.

The advancements made in this area are quite impressive as Land Rover is committed to giving their users the best off-roading experience while still having a vehicle that is comfortable when driving in the regular day-to-day.

One of the newest technologies that the Land Rover comes with is known as wade sensing. This technology is very helpful to drivers as it can tell you about the water that you are about to wade into.

It should really only be used with steady water that you are able to tell is going to be consistent throughout whatever you are driving through. If you are able to watch someone else drive through the water, that should give you an idea of what you are looking at as far as depths go.

However, wade sensing definitely comes with its limitations as well. Obviously, you cannot use it to drive through floodwaters or any flowing waters.

This is a bad idea for many reasons and you should not attempt to do so regardless of what these read outs say because you could be putting yourself in a very dangerous situation.

Another problem that can come with wade sensing is a false sense of security, you should not use the wade sensing feature to assume that your wading is going to become less dangerous.

Knowledge of how your wade sensing feature works should give you a better idea of what you know and what you don’t know. The wade sensing feature only detects the immediate level of water that is around the car. Therefore, it can’t predict the level of waters that are farther away or adjust to water that may be rapidly changing.

It really isn’t supposed to be used to determine whether it is safe to keep driving or not, in that sense it is not like a traditional red light or green light that says “safe” or “not safe”.

If you are the driver of the vehicle you obviously will always be responsible for using this information as an additional way to gauge the safety of a situation. If there are any other potential hazards or poor driving conditions, the wade sensing feature may not tell you that.

In addition, you should watch when entering water that may have a slope to it. The wade sensing feature may not work appropriately when trying to warn you of water that slopes down quickly and therefore is much deeper in some parts than where your car may currently be located.

Another area that you should be careful when using wade sensing is in inclement weather. There are times where snow, ice, or even mud may get on to your sensors and stop them from working properly.

You should probably take the time to make sure your sensors are clear so you are getting an accurate reading. This also goes for water that may be under a layer of snow or ice on the surface of the water as well, for obvious reasons.

Wade sensing is mostly used as a backup feature to alert you when the vehicle is approaching the maximum wading depth that you can handle.

It will alert you by showing warning messages on the touchscreen as well as the instrument panel and there will be audible sounds that are warning you of the potential danger as well.

If you are really looking to test the limits of what your Land Rover Discovery can do, it would be a great idea to study up on the wade sensing feature so that you can maximize the potential of your vehicle.

Tips For Driving Your Land Rover Discovery in Water

The Land Rover Discovery has an amazing talent to be able to keep moving in tough off-roading terrain as well as considerable amounts of water when compared to other vehicles.

How Deep Can a Land Rover Discovery Go in Water?

However, as a driver you should also know your limitations and be aware of what kind of danger is lurking in all situations. If you approach certain situations with a level of cockiness, you may find that you are asking for a lot of trouble.

Even in situations that you have been through before, you should always check to make sure that you are being safe to prevent a bad situation later.

If you are a complete rookie, you should attempt to learn as much as possible about driving into water situations and even attempt to learn from some more experienced drivers because the worst-case scenarios when it comes to negative outcomes are just so consequential.

When crossing over a river, it is important to look for the lowest point – usually a ford. For areas that are heavily flooded, you may need to use more advanced techniques.

One technique that is helpful when trying to get through a heavily flooded area is to create a bow wave. This is a crucial step if you are in an area where you are near your maximum wading depth.

The bow wave is going to reduce the water near the front of the vehicle artificially which will help keep your engine bay and air intake from flooding. To create a bow wave, you will need to drive slowly as well as being very consistent with your speed to maintain the speed of the bow wave.

Again, these are fairly complicated procedures and should really only be attempted by people with serious experience. Trying to come in and think that you know everything as a newer driver is asking for a lot of problems that will have serious consequences.

Remember, just because you are driving a Discovery does not mean that you are completely invincible. Range Rovers are not waterproof. You cannot simply assume that you will come out on the other side because you have a vehicle that is better at wading through waters than others. Unfortunately, that’s just not how the process works.

Those facts bear repeating due to the simple nature of confidence causing so many problems for drivers when crossing water.

How Deep Can a Land Rover Discovery Go in Water?

The biggest mistakes are due to assuming a path is completely clear when it is not or failing to account for the fact that the water may be deeper than it seems. Crossing water is always tricky due to the fact that there may be some steep slopes that could make you misjudge the situation.

At the end of the day, the Land Rover Discovery truly is a great vehicle for off-roading and for crossing terrains that have some sort of water that prevents most vehicles from continuing.

However, they are not water proof and do not give you complete immunity to do whatever you want. Stay safe and use good safety measures and you should be just fine.

John Nelson

You can find John stringing a hammock from the back of his SUV to a tree camping in the outdoors most weekends during warmer weather. John loves the outdoors and the freedom four-wheel-drive vehicles offer.

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