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Want a comfortable cruiser? Then go for Land Rover Discovery Sport

December 20, 2016 20:35 IST

The Discovery Sport is a practical package, a spacious cruiser with good off-roading capabilities says Indian automobile website

The Discovery Sport is the replacement for the Freelander 2 and uses the mechanicals from the Evoque. The Discovery Sport is quite a jump ahead when it comes to styling.

The design is very much inspired from the Evoque, evident from the bonnet, grille, side profile and of course the head and tail lamps and the designers at Land Rover seem to have done a splendid job in making this SUV.

The Discovery Sport has a very nice stance and is much bigger than other SUVs that are available in the same price segment.

Unfortunately, as sporty as the exteriors look, the interiors are quite simple. The dashboard looks similar to the one on other Land Rover SUVs and the layout is pretty neat with lesser buttons as compared to the Evoque.

It looks good, no doubt, but lacks the sporty appeal that the exteriors are so reeking of. There is a lot of detailing in the interiors too and the colour combination of black and beige looks super.

There are also a lot of metal inserts which add the wee bit premium touch that a car in this segment requires. The build quality is excellent and the quality of materials is pretty much top-notch.

The dashboard comes wrapped in a soft touch material while the steering wheel is also leather-wrapped and feels very good to hold. The wheel has controls for the phone, audio system as well as cruise control.

The AC vents on the centre console are placed below the 8-inch screen. There is a start-stop button behind the steering wheel and the instrument cluster is quite similar to the one on the Evoque.

The Land Rover Discovery Sport is offered with a 2.2-litre, 4-cylinder, turbocharged diesel engine. The oil-burner is offered in two states of tune.

The variants with the TD4 trim, including our test vehicle, have the lower state of tune in which the engine churns out 147 HP of power at 3500 RPM and 400 Nm of torque from 1750 RPM.

The higher SD4 trim pumps out an extra 40 HP of power and 20 Nm of torque. The engine is mated to the same 9-speed ZF automatic transmission that is also available with the Range Rover Evoque. The Discovery Sport takes 10.5 seconds to complete the 0-100 km/hr sprint which isn't impressive.

When you flick the gearknob to D and set off, you realise that the engine has almost negligible turbo lag and the SUV responds nicely to throttle inputs but acceleration isn't aggressive or something that would make you go WOW.

Power delivery from the engine is very smooth and linear all the way to the redline. The oil-burner is lacking on power and its top-end performance is really less than satisfactory.

The Discovery Sport maxes out at 180 km/hr. The 2.2-litre unit, however, really excels when we talk about refinement or NVH levels which are just brilliant. This is one engine that isn't meant for quick bursts of acceleration but rather smooth cruising on the highways.

The Land Rover Discovery Sport has an all-independent suspension and hence the SUV succeeds in producing excellent levels of ride.

Be it on smooth tarmac or pothole-laden roads, the Discovery Sport doesn't disappoint at all and it will keep all its passengers happy while gobbling up potholes and craters with utmost ease.

The HSE variant which is the topmost trim also comes with an Adaptive Suspension that functions even better. If you plan to go off-roading, the water wading capacity of 600 mm should keep you happy while the Hill Descent Control function is also useful.

The steering on the Discovery Sport is on the heavier side but it doesn't tire out your muscles while manoeuvring the vehicle in the city.

At high speeds, the wheel gains some weight and feels confidence inspiring while the vehicle is also a very good handler by SUV standards.

There is some amount of understeer which is mostly noticeable when taking very sharp turns at high speeds, otherwise the Discovery provides a very pleasant handling experience.

The Land Rover Discovery Sport is one SUV that will largely appeal to families and those people who want a comfortable cruiser and not a performance oriented vehicle.

The British model excels in most departments like comfort, features, looks and mileage and the only thing going against the car is the engine's performance.

However, not everyone out there wants to compete in a drag race and hence the 147 HP trim will suffice to most buyers who restrict usage to the city. For those who want that extra bit of power, they have an option to choose the SD4 trim with more horses.

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