What's the used Land Rover Discovery Sport 4x4 like?
Time was, if you wanted a seven-seat SUV, you had to make do with something big, heavy and unwieldy. But the Land Rover Discovery Sport, which arrived in 2014, manages to cram additional seating into a body that’s more compact than a regular Discovery, with the benefit that it's much easier to park.
The Discovery Sport was, in fact, the replacement for the highly popular Freelander, sharing a lot of its underpinnings with the first-generation Evoque, and remaining a very popular model, throughout its life. A heavily updated version arrived in 2019 with changes to the interior and infotainment system, and most models got mild-hybrid technology, too.
It doesn't get much less confusing differentiating between the trim levels. The range kicks off with the Pure, which gives you cruise control, rear parking sensors and a DAB radio. Upgrade to SE and you get heated front seats, a heated windscreen and dual-zone climate control. For sat-nav, you’ll need SE Technology, which also provides front parking sensors and a powered tailgate. One notch up again is the HSE, which gives you a good slug of equipment, including full leather upholstery, a panoramic roof, a rear-view camera, an upgraded sound system and keyless entry.
Further up the range sit three versions based on the HSE. HSE Black gives you an array of black styling addenda; HSE Luxury adds a host of extra toys like heated and cooled front seats, a heated steering wheel and air conditioning for the rearmost row of seats; and top-of-the-range HSE Dynamic Luxury gives you all those toys plus sportier styling.
On the post-facelift cars, you have to choose whether to go for the regular Discovery Sport or the R-Dynamic version; the latter simply adds sportier styling touches to the exterior. The new trim levels were standard, S, SE, HSE, R-Dynamic S, R-Dynamic SE and R-Dynamic HSE.
You can, of course, upgrade to one of the other more powerful engines on offer, but, while all of these offer more than enough shove to keep you happy, they’re also thirsty. We’d go for the nine-speed automatic gearbox over the six-speed manual, too, because it suits the Discovery Sport’s character and will make the car easier to sell on.
As far as interior goes, there’s a true sense of quality to all the fixtures and fittings; especially pleasing, too, is the way all the major controls are clearly and logically laid out. The infotainment system is less of a success, mind you – it can be a bit of a fiddle to use.
In terms of passenger accommodation, ‘cram’ is the operative word where the rearmost seats are concerned; they aren’t as spacious as you’ll find in a larger SUV or even a similarly sized MPV. In fact, in the Discovery Sport, the third row is only really suitable for children. If space is a priority, you might be better off with the Skoda Kodiaq or Peugeot 5008, which are more spacious inside. Don’t forget, too, that that extra row of seats is optional on the Discovery Sport, so you’ll need to look for one with it fitted; by contrast, it’s standard on the 5008.
The boot’s a decent size, though, especially when the rearmost seats are folded down into the floor, while passengers in the front and middle rows will find plenty of space.
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