2019 Discovery Sport gets plug-in hybrid 23 | 05 | 2019

    LAND ROVER HAS given its biggest-selling model, the Discovery Sport, what amounts to a major update. The upgrade — which includes an overhauled platform, new interior tech, and a range of mild-hybrid and plug-in drivetrains — comes five years after the car’s original launch. Available to order now, prices start from £31,575. (Related: Range Rover unleashes 542bhp Velar)

    In the wake of the new Range Rover Evoque, the upgraded Discovery Sport benefits from Land Rover’s Premium Transverse Architecture. As a result there’s a 13% increase in stiffness over the previous model, and for the first time 21in alloys can now be fitted on top-spec models.

    Despite being 2mm shorter in length and 3mm taller — while retaining the previous Disco Sport’s 2741mm wheelbase and 2069mm width — the latest version benefits from better packaging which delivers more interior space. In addition it can also accommodate a larger fuel tank and hybrid drivetrains. (Related: All-new Range Rover Evoque)


    From the end of this year, the hybrid line-up will include a plug-in combo which pairs an electric motor with a three-cylinder petrol engine. But from launch the new Discovery Sport range will consist of the 48-volt units already introduced in the new Evoque.

    Using energy recouped during braking to reduce load on the engine under acceleration, the system is fitted to all but the entry 148bhp front-wheel-drive diesel. The system also allows the engine to cut out from deceleration below 11mph and give near-instantaneous restarts as needed.


    Three diesel and two petrol motors will be available from launch:  all are 2.0-litre four-cylinder ‘Ingenium’ engines. The entry-level is the 148bhp diesel, which Land Rover says returns 47.8mpg on the WLTP test. The range-topper is the 250bhp petrol, capable of  0-62mph in 7.1secs. Both a  six-speed manual gearbox, and an updated nine-speed auto, are available.


    Not surprisingly, much of the new tech first debuted in the second-gen Evoque will also filter through to the latest Discovery Sport. ClearSight ground-view tech — which lets the driver ‘look through’ the bonnet and see the position of the wheels relative to off-road obstacles, or pavement kerbs — comes from the Evoque, as does the conventional rear-view which mirror turns into a digital display at the flick of a switch. This then relays images from a rear-facing camera mounted on the roof and gives a wide-angle, unobstructed view behind.


    The redesigned cabin features Land Rover’s latest Touch Pro infotainment system. There’s a new 10.25-inch touchscreen that sits flush within the dash, plus a mix of physical and touch-sensitive climate controls. There’s also a 12.3-inch digital driver’s display.

    The addition of 4G WiFi connectivity and wireless charging, plus the inclusion of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto benefits those using smartphones.


    Related: Roadtest — Range Rover Evoque

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    Jim McGill


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