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Discovery Sports a new look. Image by Land Rover.

Discovery Sports a new look
Farewell Freelander; hello Land Rover Discovery Sport.
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What's the news?

Say hello to the new Land Rover Discovery Sport, or, in its makers words, 'the world's most versatile premium compact SUV'. Replacing the Freelander, the new Disco Sport has a unique '5+2' seating arrangement and emissions as low as 119g/km. Prices start at £32,395 initially and are set to drop under £30,000 next year.


First impressions are of a striking, attractive vehicle. There's more than a hint of Range Rovers Evoque and Sport about the Discovery Sport, and very little to link it to the current Discovery - other than the name emblazoned across the bonnet and boot lid. As we've come to expect from Land Rover, bejewelled lights front and rear are present and correct and there are several different versions. As standard are halogen headlamps and daytime running lights, 'punctuated at four equal intervals to represent the points of the compass'. Signature headlamps have Xenon and LED tech, while Signature Plus adds adaptive cornering ability. The rear lights are standard or 'Signature'.

Customisation is included of course. The 12 body colours are called Fuji White, Santorini Black, Corris Grey, Indus Silver, Loire Blue, Scotia Grey, Aintree Green, Kaikoura Stone, Firenze Red, Yulong White, Barolo Black and Phoenix Orange. Black or grey contrasting roofs are also available, as is a Black Pack, which includes a gloss-black grille, door mirror caps, front bumper vents, bonnet and tailgate lettering and 20-inch alloy wheels.


Big news inside the Discovery Sport is the standard '5+2' seating configuration. The nomenclature indicates that Land Rover doesn't want to be chastised for claiming it's a seven-seater when space in the rear-most seats is limited, but it does give the car a USP over its rivals. The second row of seats tilt and slide for maximum versatility and boot space (with the final row stowed, but the second row in use) is between 829- and 981 litres depending on the position of the middle seats. Isofix anchors are standard in the second row, there can be up to four 12V power points around the cabin and six USB charging sockets.

Speaking of in-car tech, the Discovery Sport debuts JLR's new eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system, which takes on a myriad of functions depending on the vehicle specification. Owners can download the Land Rover InControl Apps to their smartphones and interface directly with the phone apps via the car's touchscreen system. Several high-end stereo systems are offered too, including a 17-speaker Meridian option.


At launch, the Discovery Sport will be available with the proven SD4 2.2-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel engine and a choice of six-speed manual or nine-speed automatic gearboxes. Peak power is 190hp and up to 420Nm of torque is produced. It will have four-wheel drive as standard. Combined economy for the manual model is quoted at 46.0mpg. However, Land Rover hints at a front-wheel drive variant in time, called the eD4, with emissions as low as 119g/km.

Land Rover hasn't forgotten its roots for the Discovery Sport and it claims that things like ground clearance, approach, departure and breakover angles are all commensurate with expectations of the brand. A wading ability of 600mm is also quoted. Terrain Response is standard, allowing drivers to choose between General; Grass/Gravel/Snow; Mud and Ruts; or Sand settings.

The Discovery Sport is made from 'a mix of high-strength steel, ultra-high-strength boron steel and lightweight aluminium panels' though no figures for weight have been released as yet. Land Rover's engineers have developed an all-new multi-link rear axle though, which helps with packaging of the interior concept, but is also claimed to enhance refinement and agility, while increasing axle articulation when the going gets really tough.

Anything else?

Pore through the massive gallery of images accompanying this news story and you may spot the Virgin Galactic 'plane' in the background. Those shots were taken at Spaceport America in New Mexico and it doesn't just happen to be a great location for shots. Land Rover and Virgin Galactic have formed a partnership and kicking it all off is a phenomenal competition in which four friends can win a trip to space. Unsurprisingly this is the first time ever such a thing has been offered. To enter the competition, you need to produce a 30-second video, or a photograph, that demonstrates your 'spirit of adventure', choose three friends to join you and then submit it via Land Rover's website ( The winners will be announced in December this year. See below video for more.

Shane O' Donoghue - 3 Sep 2014

2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.

2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport. Image by Land Rover.    - Land Rover road tests
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