Embracing the adventurous spirit that has defined the Discovery family for the past 30 years, the new Discovery Sport is a striking evolution of the original that does not compromise capability. Demonstrating versatility in a finer form, the spacious, more comfortable and quiet 5+2 interior has been transformed with a completely new infotainment interface and latest connectivity, plus a more flexible seating arrangement with up to 24 combinations.
Gerry McGovern, Land Rover Chief Design Officer, said: “Building on the success of the original Discovery Sport, this beautifully proportioned vehicle has been refined, enhancing its characterful exterior which compliments the engaging nature of the interior space.”
Trademark Discovery design cues, including the clamshell bonnet, rising beltline and tapered roof remain, but the new model is a bold exterior evolution. The proportions have been optimised to project a more striking visual with new signature LED headlamps at the front and rear, alongside an updated front grille and bumpers.
Inside, the arrival of the digital Touch Pro infotainment system and the introduction of more premium materials throughout transforms the cabin to create a practical, high quality space. New seats across each of the three rows provide improved comfort and versatility, thanks to the second row 40:20:40 split fold and slide functionality, boosting the possible number of seat combinations to 24 and covering every eventuality – be it the school run or a family holiday.
Discovery Sport’s unique versatility has been further enhanced, with improved small item stowage across all rows and a 20 per cent increase in fuel tank capacity (up to 65-litres). With the option of Land Rover’s Activity Key, the compact SUV is more usable than ever and designed to take your family further.
Built on Land Rover’s latest Premium Transverse Architecture (PTA), the Discovery Sport provides greater versatility and refinement with a new body that is 13 per cent stiffer than its predecessor and, together with rigidly-mounted subframes that reduce noise and vibration intrusion into the cabin, ensures maximum safety in the event of a collision.
Felix Brautigam, Chief Commercial Officer at Jaguar Land Rover, said: “Discovery Sport has been a real sales success for Land Rover, leading the way for the past three years and selling almost half a million vehicles to date. During that time, it has won a number of awards and introduced a large number of new, younger families into the brand who are looking for something different.
“The new Land Rover Discovery Sport is a true Land Rover that embodies what the Discovery family stands for: amazing versatility that allows our customers and their families to make more of their world. While the exterior design has undergone a refined evolution, the all-new Premium Transverse Architecture revolutionises comfort and handling, and supports electrification with our advanced Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle powertrains.”
The 2.0-litre diesel, badged D180, offers 132kW and 430Nm while returning an average fuel consumption of 5.8l/100km. The P250 petrol has outputs of 183kW and 365Nm with an average consumption of 8.0l/100km. An even more efficient P300e plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) version is scheduled to join the range in South Africa in 2020.
To maximise efficiency, models with All-Wheel Drive (AWD) benefit from Driveline Disconnect – a Power Transfer Unit at the front axle that disconnects drive to the rear wheels under steady state cruising, reducing frictional losses and re-engaging AWD in less than 500 milliseconds.
Designed to meet the digital demands of a modern family, the latest Discovery Sport is available with a ‘smart rear view mirror’ that transforms into a video screen at the flick of a switch to display what is behind the vehicle in crisp high definition. Offering a wider (50-degree) field of vision and superior visibility in low light conditions from a camera mounted above the rear window, the mirror ensures rear visibility is not compromised by second row passengers or bulky items in the boot.
Ground View technology has been introduced to help drivers navigate high city centre kerbs or tackle rough terrain by projecting camera imagery that offers a virtual 180-degree view around and beneath the vehicle onto the touchscreen. Effectively making the bonnet invisible, this is the realisation of Land Rover’s Transparent Bonnet technology, first previewed in 2014.
For regular drivers of the new Discovery Sport, Smart Settings uses artificial intelligence algorithms to learn driver preferences, adjusting massage and seat positions, music and climate settings and steering column positioning to suit each driver.
The latest Discovery Sport is every inch a Land Rover, combining assured all-terrain handling with all-weather capability, including a wading depth of 600mm, All-Wheel Drive and a second-generation Active Driveline system. Terrain Response 2 automatically detects the surface and adjusts the torque delivery to best suit the conditions, while Advanced Tow Assist makes reversing with a trailer (up to 2,500kg) more intuitive and safer than ever.
There is a reversing camera as standard on all models, alongside a suite of advanced driver assistance systems. This includes Adaptive Cruise Control with Steering Assist, which centres the vehicle in the lane based on road markings as well as maintaining a safe distance from the vehicle in front. Other active safety features include Lane Keep Assist and Driver Condition Monitor.
The new Discovery Sport is scheduled for South African introduction near the end of 2019. Pricing will be announced closer to the time.