2008 Land Rover LR3 SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Land Rover LR3 SUV

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Land Rover LR3 Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 4.4 L V 8-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Four Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 300 hp @ 5500 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 12/17 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2008 Land Rover LR3

  • Though not as ideal for daily on-road use as some other luxury SUVs, the 2008 Land Rover LR3 offers go-anywhere versatility, loads of luxury and a pedigreed nameplate.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Advanced suspension is well-suited for both on-road cruising and off-road treks, comfortable and well-appointed interior.

  • Cons

    Excessive weight stunts performance, complicated audio and climate controls, spotty build quality and reliability.

  • What's New for 2008

    The overwhelmed V6 engine has been dropped, leaving the 4.4-liter V8 as the 2008 Land Rover LR3's only available engine. An eight-way power passenger seat is now standard on both LR3 trims, while the HSE trim gains a standard power-adjustable tilt steering wheel with memory. The HSE's optional Luxury package now includes special upgraded leather upholstery.

Full 2008 Land Rover LR3 Review

What's New for 2008

The overwhelmed V6 engine has been dropped, leaving the 4.4-liter V8 as the 2008 Land Rover LR3's only available engine. An eight-way power passenger seat is now standard on both LR3 trims, while the HSE trim gains a standard power-adjustable tilt steering wheel with memory. The HSE's optional Luxury package now includes special upgraded leather upholstery.


In the beginning there were Jeep and Land Rover. After World War II, the chief designer of British carmaker Rover was so impressed with a war surplus Jeep he purchased that he designed his own four-wheel-drive vehicle, which eventually inspired the first Land Rovers. From Kent and Kenya to Colorado and Calcutta, Land Rovers would become the go-to vehicle the world over for adventures taken off the safe confines of pavement. The 2008 Land Rover LR3 embodies this legacy and adds the luxury niceties expected by today's SUV buyers. These consumers aren't looking at the LR3 as a means of taking on off-road extremes but as everyday family transportation.

In that regard, the LR3 delivers with standard seven-passenger capacity and three spacious seating rows arranged in "stadium" format to give its occupants a clear view of whatever lies ahead. The standard dual sunroofs also give them a clear view of whatever lies above. For those in frequent need of big-time stuff-hauling capacity, the LR3's high roof and fold-absolutely-flat rear seats provide a tremendously useful cargo area.

As a luxury vehicle, the LR3 provides the sort of features we expect from this competitive segment. However, the interior quality lags behind vehicles like the Audi Q7, BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz GL450, with a few low-budget plastics and an overall design that's more in line with Land Rover's rugged history than its luxury one. Also, our long-term test of an LR3 generally confirmed the brand's reputation for spotty quality and reliability. Consumers who buy the LR3 shouldn't be surprised if they end up on a first-name basis with their Land Rover service writer.

While the 2008 Land Rover LR3 may not be a perfectly refined luxury family hauler like a Q7, Volvo XC90 or Acura MDX, it offers an unparalleled rugged image and serious off-road capabilities to back it up. If dirt roads, rutted trails and all-terrain adventures are frequent destinations for your family, it's hard to think of an SUV better-suited for the task than the Land Rover LR3.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Land Rover LR3 is a midsize SUV capable of seating seven passengers. It is offered in two trim levels: SE and HSE. The SE comes standard with 18-inch wheels, rear parking sensors, three seating rows, leather upholstery, eight-way power front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, a tilt (but not telescoping) steering wheel, a power tilt-and-slide front sunroof, a fixed rear sunroof and a nine-speaker stereo with in-dash CD changer and auxiliary audio jack. Options on the SE include bi-xenon headlights, front parking sensors, voice-activated trip computer, Bluetooth, a center console cooler box and a DVD-based navigation system that has mapping capability for both on- and off-road.

These items come standard on the HSE, which further adds 19-inch wheels, a 14-speaker Harman Kardon Logic 7 sound system and a power-tilt steering wheel. The HSE's Luxury package adds higher-grade leather upholstery and adaptive headlights, as well as the contents of the Cold Climate package (front and rear heated seats, heated windshield washer jets and a heated windshield). The Cold Climate group is available as a stand-alone item on both trim levels. Satellite radio is a stand-alone option on both LR3 models, as is the Heavy Duty Package, which provides a locking rear differential and a full-size spare tire.

Powertrains and Performance

The 2008 LR3 is powered by a 4.4-liter V8 that makes 300 horsepower and 315 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission sends power to a sophisticated four-wheel-drive system. Using a rotary knob, the driver can select one of five settings (general, snow-grass-gravel, mud and ruts, sand, and rock crawl) that optimizes everything for the conditions at hand, from throttle response to the differentials. The LR3 also features a fully independent suspension, which utilizes electronically controlled air springs to automatically adapt to virtually any terrain or off-road challenge. When properly equipped, the LR3 can tow up to 7,700 pounds.


Safety features on the 2008 Land Rover LR3 include antilock disc brakes, traction control, stability control with rollover mitigation technology, hill-descent control, front-seat side airbags and three-row head curtain airbags. Rear parking sensors are included on all LR3s, while front bumper sensors are standard on the HSE and optional on the SE. Adaptive headlights, which "look" around corners and adjust up and down to counter the effects of hard braking, are also available.

Interior Design and Special Features

Land Rover has a style all its own and it's on display inside the LR3. Although filled with luxury features, there's a general rough-and-tumble ambience that's been passed down through decades of adventure-seeking Land Rovers. The center stack is awash with black buttons and knobs, resembling some sort of navigational control panel from a yacht. That's not necessarily a good thing, though, as simple operations can be a little confusing. Also, our testing experiences have shown that build quality isn't universally solid. In terms of everyday usability, the LR3 shines, with fold-flat second- and third-row seats, and a vast cargo space with a maximum of 90 available cubic feet. A commanding driving position and elevated "stadium" seating give the driver and passengers a clear view of the road (or trail) ahead.

Driving Impressions

Even with 300 hp on tap, the hefty Land Rover LR3 is no rocket, especially when carrying a full load of passengers. Thanks to solid performance from the six-speed transmission, though, there is always adequate power available underfoot. Communicative feedback from the steering lends the Rover a crisp feel behind the wheel, and a tight turning radius makes it fairly maneuverable in parking lots. However, the vehicle's high center of gravity gives it a somewhat tippy feel when negotiating corners. The advanced suspension makes for a comfortable ride on the highway, though. With the sophisticated four-wheel-drive system, there's also plenty of traction if you ever feel the need to go exploring off-road.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Best suv

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Land Rover LR3 V8 SE 4dr SUV 4WD (4.4L 8cyl 6A)

I had always considered a Land Rover but been scared of the reliabilty. I finally went for a test drive and realized just how good this vehicle is. In terms of design, comfort, style, and capability there simply is not another vehicle that comes close. I bought an 08 with 70k on it and got an awesome deal. It had a full service history and was in mint condition. I drive it all day for business in the week and get around 18mpg. At the weekend I can load it up for weekend trips to the mountains and go on offroad trails that are extremely challenging. Othertimes I tow our 25' boat with ease. I'm at 90k with no problems. I have it regularly serviced by the LR dealer who are great. Best SUV!

Not your average suv

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Land Rover LR3 V8 HSE 4dr SUV 4WD (4.4L 8cyl 6A)

This is my second LR3 have over 150,000 miles of driving in both. Present 2008 has 63,000 miles. I have extensive driving experiance in all types of vehicles from H1 Hummers to Toyota Prius. Land Rover LR3 is not for everyone, if trips to the mall or shopping is all you do get a mini van. My LR3 is used 60/40 60 % on road 40% off road. It is the only vehicle that you can drive down the interstate at 70 mph and then go off-road and back on the interstate and do so with the easiest driver input. This is a truck, it is big, heavy to get good gas mileage you have to drive it like you want good gas mileage. I average 18 mpg with highs of 21 mpg on trips in flat country. Off road this is a tool

Land rover for me

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Vehicle: 2008 Land Rover LR3 V8 HSE 4dr SUV 4WD (4.4L 8cyl 6A)

Have 2008 Lr3 HSE, only problems are a seatbelt in the back seat and the refrig, replaced and working fine. Live where the snow flies 5-6 months of the year, Lr3 is a beast in the snow. Love to embarrass my two buds with hummers, not even in the same class. This SUV is not to drive to the mall or g-store. Love to drive this car, went on trip to florida with two kids.....great. The gas mileage was expected averaged 21mpg on highway. The car makes me walk funny, built like a tank.

Bold and beautiful

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Vehicle: 2008 Land Rover LR3 V8 SE 4dr SUV 4WD (4.4L 8cyl 6A)

Fun to drive, very comfortable ride. I have test driven BMW's an Audi but of no match. Shift it to manual and then feel the difference if you want to.

Fun to drive plus much

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Land Rover LR3 V8 SE 4dr SUV 4WD (4.4L 8cyl 6A)

Great vehicle, went from a fully loaded Toyota 4runner to LR3 and after way to many years in a Toyota found something more fun, limited owner group and great dealer support. I recommend changing tires to standard SUV tires and watch fuel economy go up by 1 - 2 miles per gallons and better ride and longer life. Put 2 extra pounds of pressure in tire and she really sails down the interstate. 3rd row is awesome design compared to everything else in this class. Looking forward to the LR4. Trade off from the Toyota is better space, better visibility and after changing tires better fuel economy. Drawbacks is number of dealers but quality has been great.

Zero defects

by on
Vehicle: 2008 Land Rover LR3 V8 HSE 4dr SUV 4WD (4.4L 8cyl 6A)

This is my 2nd LR3 and the best vehicle I've had. I've had absolutely zero defects on this vehicle. I leased it, but am about to buy off the lease, it's that good. One thing I cannot understand is how the reviews always comment on quality. The quality of these vehicles is awesome.

Talk About The 2008 LR3

2008 Land Rover LR3 Discussions See all Started By

anyway i just came across an 05 LR3 for sale that seems to be well maintained (i know the owner) and is reasonably priced. i drove it (first time in a land rover) and was very impressed with the ride...

I can only say the word CARFAX check it out off the vin # to assure all past history on any car for that matter but mainly because LR3 is a higher maintence SUV. I love my LR3 2008 but must say it has...

My questions for someone who may have an LR3 2008, should I purchase an extended warranty for a loaner LR3 2008, which type, what does it cover and how much should I have to pay from dealer?...

Gas Mileage


  • 12
  • cty
  • 17
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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