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Freelander is dead. Long live new Land Rover Discovery Sport!

Land Rover Discovery Sport
Land Rover Launches New Discovery Sport

Land Rover has just revealed the new Discovery Sport!. This versatile premium compact SUV replaces the outgoing Freelander, and marks the first member of the new Discovery family. Uniquely in its segment, Discovery Sport’s dynamic design combines 5+2 seating configurability with design and engineering integrity in a compact footprint.

A suite of new Land Rover innovations also makes their debut in this car, including the next generation multi-link rear axle, advanced pedestrian airbag technology, an all-new touchscreen infotainment system and state-of-the-art high-strength steel and lightweight aluminium bodyshell for outstanding performance, safety and efficiency.

Design language

Discovery Sport is clearly identifiable as a Land Rover but introduces a progressive new design approach specifically tailored to create clear differentiation between the other families within the Land Rover brand architecture: Luxury (Range Rover), Leisure (Discovery) and Dual-Purpose (Defender).

This beautifully proportioned vehicle brings a new sense of dynamism to the Discovery family and projects an image of confidence with its wheel-at-each-corner stance. The fast bonnet line steps down into a rising belt line, creating a distinctively compact profile that belies significant interior space with optional 5+2 seating.

According to Land Rover, the Discovery Sport’s versatile interior has been designed to be premium, not precious. The centre console forms a strong vertical graphic in the middle of the instrument panel, ensuring key controls are deliberately placed to provide easy access from the Sports Command Driving Position. Simple, clean surfaces and high-quality materials feature throughout.

Land Rover Discovery Sport
Advanced Land Rover Discovery Sport

Lightweight, yet ultra-strong

The car’s ‘Monocoque’ construction combines a mix of high-strength steel, ultra-high-strength boron steel and lightweight aluminium panels. This ensures a strong, stiff and light base for outstanding dynamic performance and high levels of torsional rigidity. An all-new multi-link rear axle heightens agility, increases axle articulation and – together with lightweight aluminium suspension components and carefully calibrated dampers – enables an unrivalled level of compliance no matter what the surface conditions. The new rear axle also reduces interior noise and minimises intrusion of the rear suspension turrets into the load space and has proven to be key in providing excellent load space and 5+2 seating.

Land Rover Discovery Sport
Land Rover Discovery Sport – Rear

Efficient powertrains

At launch, a range of four-cylinder turbocharged petrol and turbodiesel engines will be available. All feature stop-start technology, high-pressure direct injection, low-friction internal components and smart regenerative charging for outstanding performance and economy.

Petrol derivatives use an all-alloy Si4 2.0-litre engine with 179kW and direct fuel injection. This offers six-cylinder levels of performance in a compact package that reduces weight and cuts CO2 emissions by up to 20 per cent, compared to conventional larger capacity engines with a similar power output.

2.2-litre turbodiesel derivatives are available in either 110kW TD4 or 140kW SD4 specification. With both TD4 and SD4 producing the same 420Nm, drivers can count on exceptional fuel efficiency of up to 24.2 km/L as well as effortless overtaking ability.

All engine derivatives can be specified with an advanced nine-speed automatic transmission, for unequaled refinement, efficiency, driver engagement and off-road capability. A six-speed manual gearbox will also be available for diesel models.

All-terrain capability

Three choices of drivetrain will be available for maximum versatility and customer choice: two-wheel drive, permanent four-wheel-drive or Active Driveline. Active Driveline switches between two- and four-wheel-drive to provide an unrivalled combination of on-road agility, off-road capability and all-round efficiency.

Discovery Sport’s body geometry has been optimised for even the harshest terrain, with excellent ground clearance, approach, departure and breakover angles, and an ability to wade through water to a depth of 600mm.

Land Rover’s Terrain Response® system features on all four-wheel-drive derivatives, allowing drivers to tailor Discovery Sport’s responses to the prevailing conditions. Up to five settings are available: General; Grass/Gravel/Snow; Mud and Ruts; and Sand. Dynamic mode is optionally available and heightens on-road performance and driver feedback.

Discovery Sport’s full suite of all-terrain technologies includes:

• Hill Descent Control® (HDC)
• Gradient Release Control® (GRC)
• Wade SensingTM
• Roll Stability Control (RSC)
• Dynamic Stability Control (DSC)
• Electronic Traction Control (ETC)
• Engine Drag torque Control (EDC)

Land Rover Discovery Sport
Land Rover Discovery Sport – Off-road

On the road

Many of the innovations that make Discovery Sport unbeatable off-road are equally key to its responsive handling and composure on-road.

Key highlights include:

• All-new multi-link rear axle
• Variable-ratio, electric power-assisted steering (EPAS)
• Torque Vectoring by Braking (TVB)
• Nine-speed automatic gearbox with adaptive shift strategy
• MagneRide™ adaptive dampers
• 325mm front disc brakes with new-generation calipers and pads

Safety and convenience

The new Discovery Sport features cutting-edge technology including everything from an advanced new infotainment system with 8-inch touchscreen to a pedestrian airbag that minimises the consequences of a collision. Other available driver-assistance technologies include:

• Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB)
• Electric Power-Assisted Steering (EPAS)
• Park Assist
• Automatic High-Beam Assist
• Lane Departure Warning
• Traffic Sign Recognition
• Trailer Stability Assist
• Tow Assist & Tow Hitch Assist
• Blind-Spot Monitor & Closing Vehicle Sensing
• Reverse Traffic Detection
• HD Surround Camera System
• HDD satellite-navigation system
• Automatic headlamps
• Rain-sensitive wipers
• Parking sensors

Land Rover Discovery Sport
Land Rover Discovery Sport – Cabin

Land Rover InControl™ Technologies

Land Rover’s innovative suite of InControl™ technologies puts Discovery Sport at the cutting-edge of in-car connectivity. Developed in conjunction with Bosch SoftTec, InControl Apps enables vehicle-optimised smartphone apps to be displayed and controlled with their original look and feel from the vehicle’s new 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system.

Owners simply download Land Rover InControlTM Apps to their smartphone and connect it to the vehicle’s dedicated USB port to enable compatible apps to function on the Discovery Sport’s touchscreen.

Land Rover InControl Remote™ allows owners to summon roadside assistance or the emergency services if required, while InControl Secure tracks the vehicle should it be stolen.

Land Rover Discovery Sport
Land Rover Discovery Sport – Technology

Head Up Display

Head Up Display (HUD) debuts on the Land Rover Discovery Sport. This technology projects key driving data including road speed, gear position and satellite-navigation directions onto a compact area of the windscreen in the driver’s line of sight allowing their eyes to always be on the road.

Land Rover Discovery Sport
New Discovery Sport – Details and Inetriors

The new Discovery Sport will go on sale in 2015 alongside the existing seven-seat Land Rover Discovery in South Africa.

Note: Featured pictures may not accurately depict the final South African version of the car. Final specifications, engines and trim levels of SA version not available at time of publication.

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