Land Rover has revealed official specs and pictures of its forthcoming Discovery Sport, and it is, in our opinion, a bit of a stunner.
The Discovery Sport bears a striking resemblance to the smaller Evoque, with an aggressive stance and angular body styling, though that’s where the similarities end. The Discovery Sport is the first premium SUV that comes with three rows of seats, allowing a total of seven passengers to ride in luxury – on and off-road.
Land Rover claims the Discovery Sport has a footprint no larger than existing 5-seat premium SUVs, despite the abundance of interior space.
The rearmost sears are usually reserved for smaller, or younger passengers, while the middle row of seats tilt and slide for maximum configurability and comfort.
Land Rover has lavished plenty of attention to detail on the Discovery Sport’s interior. The vehicle will come with a new eight-inch touchscreen display, a total of six USB ports across all three rows of seats and four 12 volt points, allowing all occupants to charge their devices simultaneously.
Power will come from a 2.2-litre, 190PS (191bhp) SD4 turbodiesel engine with stop-start technology and the option of either a 9-speed automatic or 6-speed manual gearbox. An eD4 turbodiesel will also be made available, promising CO2 emissions of just 119g/km.
The latest addition to the Discovery family promises substantial off-roading prowess. It’ll happily drive through rivers, thanks to a wading depth of 600mm, and tackle challenging slopes without scraping its face or bottom, courtesy of approach, departure and breakover angles of 25, 31 and 21 degrees, respectively.
Unsurprisingly, the Discovery Sport also comes equipped with Land Rover’s clever Terrain Response technology, which automatically works out what sort of surface you’re driving over and adapts the throttle response and traction control settings for maximum grip.
On the road, the Discovery Sport promises to be as comfortable as one would expect of a luxury Land Rover, thanks to long-travel suspension, though the company promises it will also reward those who wish to unleash their inner hooligan.
Safety hasn’t been neglected. The Discovery Sport is the first premium SUV to feature an external pedestrian airbag. It also comes with autonomous braking, so running into soft fleshy objects is less likely and, should the worst happen, less messy.
The Land Rover Discovery Sport will go on sale from January 2015. The SD4 version will cost £32,395. Later in 2015, the eD4 version will sell for ‘under £30,000’. Watch out for a full review soon.