Mention the Discovery Sport whilst talking to a handful of die hard Land Rover enthusiasts and you’ll get the same response as when the Evoque was first introduced: ‘It’s not a proper Land Rover..’ etc. Of course it isn’t a proper Land Rover, the Discovery Sport is more fuel efficient, safer, handles the road better, and is arguably better off road!
On the subject of off road, I was fortunate to have a quick play with a Discovery Sport during the SMMT day at Millbrook Testing Ground the other week. The first thing I noticed after jumping in was that a lot of the controls, dash and switchgear are all taken from the Evoque, which isn’t a bad thing of course, as the Discovery Sport shares a lot of its underpinnings with its older sibling.
Eager to play in the mud, I didn’t pay much attention to the specs of this particular Sport, other than it was red!
Whilst traversing the rough stuff, the driver of a modern Land Rover doesn’t have much to do except steer, keep the right amount of momentum going and press the Hill Decent Control button occasionally. Having said that, one of my favourite tests these days whilst off roading in a modern 4×4 is to drive as slow as possible, just to see how they cope. Of course the Sport managed everything without any fuss, just as it should, so even momentum isn’t always necessary these days.
To be honest, there isn’t much to write about, it drove up, down and along some very steep slopes without any drama whatsoever. After the excursion I wasn’t surprised by what the Discovery Sport was capable of, it’s a Land Rover when all said and done. What did surprise me however was the limited space I had in the drivers seat, it felt as though the hard plastic centre console was encroaching on my left leg, which I wasn’t happy about. Space for rear seats passengers was ample, even with the drivers seat pushed all the way back to accommodate my lanky legs!
And that was it, I wish I could be more dramatic about the drive, like how the driver and mechanical beast fought hard against the rugged, weather beaten landscape… but the Discovery Sport walked it!
For a more in-depth review on Discovery Sport, watch this space…