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Land Rover Discovery Sport – What You Need To Know

Land Rover unveiled its all-new Discovery Sport in Paris this week, and here are the things you need to know about LR's new compact premium SUV


One of two stars at the Jaguar-Land Rover (JLR) stand at the 2014 Paris Motor Show, along with the Jaguar XE, the Land Rover Discovery Sport looks to make an even more concerted effort at tackling the compact premium SUV class. Three engines are available, including two 2.2-litre diesels producing either 150bhp or 190bhp, and a 2.0-litre petrol with 240bhp, but here are some other facts you need to know about Land Rover's latest addition, cut down to bite-sized snippets for your reading pleasure.

1) Does it replace the Freelander?

Yes and no actually. In practice, the Discovery Sport does take the place of the Freelander in Land Rover's line-up, but LR never meant for the Disco Sport to be the Freelander's replacement from the outset. The new car is clearly bigger than in size than the Freelander, signifying a slight move upwards in class, and the Disco Sport also marks the beginning of LR's three-family line-up, with the Range Rover cars occupying the upper premium segment, the Discovery class targeted at practical families, and the Defender range aiming for the hardcore off-road enthusiast.

2) It is the Evoque's twin, essentially.

The Discovery Sport is based upon the Range Rover's Evoque platform, which explains the similarities in dimensions, and some commonalities in drivetrains (like the engines and nine-speed automatic gearbox). More than that though, the two cars are effectively competing in the same segment, targeting similar rivals such as the BMW X3 and Audi Q5. That said however, Land Rover believes there is a case to be made for having both cars in their portfolio. An LR executive explained that the Disco Sport is aimed at current Evoque owners who want a more practical car once their 'circumstances have changed', i.e. when kids come along.

3) It has '5+2' seating

Yes, technically the Disco Sport has seven seats, but Land Rover terms the seating configuration '5+2'. The picture explains it all (note point 3), and we really appreciate Land Rover's refreshing honesty about the token rear seats. It clearly underlines the kind of customers that the Disco Sport is aiming for, and they are clearly not people who are looking for an alternative to a people-carrying van. If you'd rather do without the extra row of seats though, Land Rover will also offer a five-seater version of the Disco Sport.