First Ride: The new Land Rover Discovery Sport

The Land Rover Freelander becomes Discovery Sport. While you had to buy the entry into the rural world of the English off-roader with the boring Freelander or had to resort to the Soccer-Mum-compact SUV Evoque, Land Rover is now introducing an off-roader that does not only have a big name.

Games, fun and sports?

First ride in the new Land Rover Discovery Sport

The useful brother of the Evoque. The new Land Rover Discovery Sport and the sharply drawn Evoque share many common components. And the relationship is also clear when it comes to the look, especially from the front. However, there is a new rear axle under the sheet and soon completely new engines. To begin with, the Discovery Sport must first position itself with known engines.

For this he gets the modern and neat design of the current one Land Rover family missed and stretches to just under 4.60 meters. Land Rover still speaks of a “compact SUV” when it comes to Discovery Sport. Whether it can also do off-road and how much space the “compact” leaves for seven seats, the first trip in the new English will show.

Land Rover Discovery Sport 54 test drives Austria

Certainly practical

No rigid axles, no mechanically locked differentials and useful off-road technology only for an extra charge. Likewise, the full load “on the road” dynamics, as far as one can speak of the current engine range.

The new Land Rover Discovery has been made more practical. 

Of course there is the new Land Rover Discovery Sport with permanent all-wheel drive. Also. When positioning itself as an “entry-level SUV drug”, however, you will have to get used to the thought of seeing a Discovery Sport with front-wheel drive and spinning wheels drifting off a snowy slope. Will that be good for Discovery Sport in the end? Hardly imaginable. But that's the way it works today. Even Land Rover is jumping on the bandwagon of the “compact SUV” and pushing customers away from the site. Somehow an honest self-assessment. 

The chassis of the new family member is well coordinated - and you can definitely appreciate the “Disco Sport” after the first trip. The new multi-link rear axle was recommended on a first trip to the snowy regions of Austria, as was the coordination of spring and damper elements. The entire chassis looks confident, remains free from rumbling and rough driving noises.

Browsed in the snow

Those who refuse to use the front-wheel drive and manual transmission of the basic Discovery Sport and prefer to use the ZF 9-speed automatic and combine it with the “Active Driveline” all-wheel drive system for € 1.000 surcharge can at least try out the old school of off-road driving.

All-wheel drive must be!

For the first time, Land Rover packs a “dynamic mode” into the Active Terrain Response system. With the “Active Driveline” baptized all-wheel drive system, the new Land Rover Discovery switches independently between all-wheel drive and front-wheel drive. The “snow program” is recommended for a successful tour over snow and ice. Those who want to drift across smooth surfaces can switch off the DSC (ESP) and select the sand mode in the terrain program. Then the all-wheel drive distributes the power aggressively, also with up to 100% to the rear, readjusts quickly and switches the gas pedal characteristic to extra sharp. The 9-speed ZF and the 190 PS of the SD4 then work up a sweat. Like the driver who wags over the slippery white with wildest drift angles.

What began as a country tour suddenly degenerates into sports. Discovery Sport can be wild too. And wrong. The Land Rover is not frightened by up to 40 ° side inclination and 45 ° steep ramps. Wacker, the British off-roader climbs through the site. As is so often the case, the talent of the driver ends earlier than the skill of the off-roader.

A quick look at the motors:

Land Rover Discovery Sport - the engines

At the start of the new Land Rover, three engines are offered to those interested. The 2.0 and 2.2 liter diesel engines with 150 to 190 PS are known from the Land Rover Evoque and can be combined with either a manual six-speed gearbox or the modern 9 automatic gearbox from ZF.

With 400 to 420 Nm, the “small” TD4 diesel is hardly less powerful in pulling than the 190 PS SD4 diesel. Land Rover will offer the small eD4 with two liters of displacement, 150 hp and 380 Nm in autumn as an “entry-level engine” and only with front-wheel drive. Its consumption should be 4.5 liters in the third mix.

There is also a 240 hp turbo gasoline engine four-cylinder with a displacement of 2.0 liters, which is only available with the 9-speed automatic and should make do with 8 to 8.3 liters in a third mix. For everyday use, however, I would expect 10 to 11 liters.

SD4 Motor Land Rover Discovery Sport

Click here for the large interior gallery

driving behavior

The six-speed manual transmission may save 2.350 € on average, but the Discovery Sport only really becomes a feel-good SUV with the 9 automatic transmission. The automatic pushes the gears quickly and barely noticeably. The Brit glides through the area on the torque hill of the ideally 190 PS strong 2.2 liter diesel. The steering pleases with its good feel in the middle position and the chassis is even recommended for higher tasks. The interior remains pleasantly quiet, the diesel engine grumbles peacefully.

With the larger of the two diesels, the Land Rover Discovery is certainly not overpowered. Thanks to the use of aluminum and magnesium, it has not become “too heavy” either. Its 1.8 tons curb weight should not be ignored.

Land Rover Discovery Sport 22 test drives Austria

Over stick and over stone

Even if you want to impress the family with up to seven seats, the dad with up to 1.698 liters of cargo space and the youth with the largest number of USB and 12-volt slots - the Land Rover remains a Land Rover, remains a Land Rover. It has to be that way and everything else would be disappointing. However, only for an additional charge. Only then can the 60 centimeter wading depth, the neat embankment angles and the control systems of the Terrain Response really be used.

If you order the Land Rover Discovery with the “Efficient Driveline” all-wheel drive (standard, no extra charge), you get an all-wheel drive with multi-plate clutch (Haldex Gen. 5) as standard. The Active Driveline has two multi-plate clutches and all-wheel drive activated as required.

Land Rover Discovery Sport 39 test drives Austria

He should be safe

The new Land Rover Discovery Sport passed the crash test with great success and 5 stars. In addition to this good news, the Land Rover Discovery also has a completely new safety feature: the “Outbag”. The airbag for pedestrians. Located between the bonnet and windshield, the pedestrian airbag waits for the moment that nobody wants to experience.

So that it doesn't even get that far, the new Land Rover Discovery Sport has an abundance of assistance systems. These include an emergency brake assistant, traffic sign recognition, a blind spot warning and - so that the 600 mm fording depth can be used safely, a fording depth warning. Well, it was already there in the big Range Rover, now also in the “compact SUV class”.

Still British!

All clear. The new Land Rover Discovery Sport is also "British" and also a Land Rover. But just a bit softer. Smaller. More comfortable.

Of course, the Land Rover Discovery Sport also goes through the off-road park, can be rolled down the slipperiest hills with ease using Hill Descent Control and remains “British” and still on the motorway at the recommended speed. The 5 + 2 seating is not something you have to do to yourself. The two seats recessed in the trunk are only suitable for dwarfs without legs. Instead, you should treat yourself to the driving dynamics package consisting of “adaptive dynamics” and “active driveline”. For some reason this combination cannot be combined with the 5 + 2 seats anyway!

From the 28. February starts at Land Rover dealers, the price tags for Land Rover Discovery Sport start at 32.250 €, a properly equipped HSE with SD4 diesel and 9 automatic gearbox is available for 48.750 €

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Land Rover Discovery Sport SD4 automatic

For sale: Premiere at 28. February 2015 at the dealers
Base Price: 43.350 €
Engine performance: 190 hp from 2.179 ccm³
Drive and transmission: ZF automatic with 9 gears
Acceleration: 8.9 seconds from 0-100 km / h
Fuel consumption: 6.1 liters on 100 km
maximum speed: 188 km/h
Length, width, height, wheelbase 4.589, 1.894, 1.724, 2.741 mm
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What would the blogger order ??

Clearly, the SD4 diesel together with the splendid nine-speed automatic transmission from ZF. The HSE equipment seems to offer a good compromise between scope and surcharge. As an extra, the driver assistance package and the viewing package would find their way into the sales contract. The 18 ″ alloy wheels of the HSE equipment would be large enough and offer a good level of residual spring comfort.

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Pedestrian airbag

The Land Rover Discovery Sport's new pedestrian airbag is triggered by pressure pipe sensors located between the bumper and bumper beam. The sensors detect the impact of an adult pedestrian. Should this be the case at a speed between 24 and 48 km / h, an airbag mounted on the base of the windshield deploys in 60 milliseconds. The airbag is normally hidden in a hatch that is tightly closed with a lid.
This lid remains firmly connected to the pedestrian airbag even after it has been unfolded using two small straps. In this way, the load is better distributed across the entire airbag - and the driver's field of vision remains largely unimpaired. The Land Rover developers have carried out extensive tests to ensure that the 110 liter pedestrian airbag does not accidentally deploy even under extreme off-road conditions.

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All photos: Land Rover
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