The company smallest SUV also features a new mild hybrid version

Five years old as of 2019, the Land Rover Discovery Sport is the company’s oldest product on the market. As a result, the British firm rolled out a mid-cycle facelift. A bit late to the party given that modern vehicles have a shorter life span, but the update is rather consistent and includes new technology and notable design changes.

The Land Rover Discovery Sport Looks Familiar But Sportier

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The Discovery Sport boasts a new grille with more refined inserts

Like any facelift, the 2020 Discovery Sport looks very similar to its predecessor. Land Rover didn’t alter too many features but changed just enough to keep the SUV fresh and market it stand out. If you were a fan of the nameplate’s clamshell hood, rising beltline, and tapered roof, you can relax, and Land Rover kept these defining features.

Up front, changes are typical for a mid-cycle facelift. The Discovery Sport boasts a new grille with more refined inserts, headlamps that look high-tech thanks to a new LED pattern, and taller bumper vents that give it a sportier vibe.

Land Rover finally updates the old Discovery Sport, add new tech and sporty features
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The profile looks the same save for minor revisions to the side skirts and the wheels. But on top of the new wheel designs in the usual 18- and 20-inch sizes, you can opt for larger 21-inch rollers for the very first time. Around back, you’ll see a new pattern for the LED taillights and a revised bumper with a black center section and a sportier diffuser-like element.

You can customize the Discovery Sport through the Black Exterior Pack, which features additional Narvik Black detailing on the grille and fender vents, extending to the hood and tailgate lettering. You can also pick from 12 exterior paint colors and the option of a black contrast roof.

2020 Land Rover Discovery Sport exterior dimensions
Overall length (in) 181
Wheelbase (in) 107.9
Height (in) 68
Width, mirrors folded (in) 85.6
Width, mirrors out (in) 81.5
Turning Radius, curb to curb (ft) 38.7

The Land Rover Discovery Sport packs new tech and enhanced versatility

Land Rover finally updates the old Discovery Sport, add new tech and sporty features
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Arguably the biggest upgrade is the 10-inch infotainment system, which comes at no additional cost

The cabin features the same design layout overall, but it boasts new tech that debuted in recently launched Range Rover vehicles. Arguably the biggest upgrade is the 10-inch infotainment system, which comes at no additional cost. It also has new connectivity features, like wireless charging for the first time, 4G Wi-Fi hotspot, and USB and 12-volt connectivity slots on every row.

The smart rearview mirror that debuted on the Range Rover Evoque is now available for the Discovery Sport. Called ClearSight Rear View, it turns the rearview mirror into an HD video screen at the touch of a button to display a rear-facing camera feed. Not exactly groundbreaking, but it’s nice to find one in this rugged vehicle too.

Land Rover finally updates the old Discovery Sport, add new tech and sporty features
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The 5+2 seating arrangement carries over, but Land Rover says it now offers improved seats and a more versatile layout thanks to the 40:20:40 split, fold, and slide functionality of the second row.

Land Rover brags about a possible number of seat combinations of up to 246. It doesn’t say much about the cramped third-row passenger space that needs to be enhanced. Needless to say, it hasn’t changed and it won’t until the next-gen model arrives.

Other new features worth mentioning include a massage function, a first for the Discovery Sport, and a sustainable, non-leather Luxtex material made of a recycled polyester microfiber as a replacement for the usual leather or fabric.

The Land Rover Discovery Sport Now Has an Electrified Drivetrain

Land Rover finally updates the old Discovery Sport, add new tech and sporty features
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Land Rover introduced an electrified version that mates the range-topping four-cylinder mill to a 48-volt starter-generator system

The SUV continues to feature the familiar 2.0-liter four-cylinder Ingenium engines. The base model comes with 237 horsepower and 251 pound-feet of torque on tap, while the more expensive trim delivers 286 horses and 295 pound-feet of twist. In addition, Land Rover introduced an electrified version that mates the range-topping four-cylinder mill to a 48-volt starter-generator system. This mild hybrid version generates 296 horsepower. The British firm didn’t say much about it, but it’s safe to assume that the extra 10 horsepower comes from the 48-volt system.

The engine-mounted belt-integrated starter generator harvests the energy normally lost during deceleration and stores it in an under-floor battery. At speeds below 11 mph, the engine shuts off when the driver applies the brakes. When pulling away, the stored energy is redeployed to assist the engine under acceleration. This feature also enhanced fuel economy, but Land Rover has yet to reveal data.

The Land Rover Discovery Sport shouldn’t cost notably more

Land Rover finally updates the old Discovery Sport, add new tech and sporty features
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Facelifts usually add a premium to the old model, but pricing should increase too much with this update. Expect the base model to cost around $39,000 instead of $37,990. As for the range-topping, 286-horsepower model, it will be replaced by the mild hybrid version, so the sticker could jump from $49,700 to around $52,000.

Further reading

Land Rover finally updates the old Discovery Sport, add new tech and sporty features
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Read our full review on the 2020 Land Rover Discovery Sport.

2016 Land Rover Discovery Sport High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2019 Land Rover Discovery Sport.

The new Discovery Sport compact premium SUV has been transformed to make it more versatile and technologically-advanced for the 2020 model year. Embracing the adventurous spirit that has defined the Discovery family for the past 30 years, the new Discovery Sport strikes a balance between a bold evolution of the original design and the familiarity that comes with no-compromise capability.

Trademark Discovery design cues, including the clamshell hood, rising beltline and tapered roof remain, but the new model is a bold exterior evolution. Modernity and refinement are reflected in the new front and rear bumpers, grille design and LED lights, making the Discovery Sport a compelling, sophisticated and sporty addition to the Discovery family.

Inside, the spacious 5+2 interior6 has been transformed with a completely new infotainment interface and the latest connectivity, plus a more flexible seating arrangement with up to 24 combinations. A new powertrain lineup for 2020 now includes the electrified option of a 48-volt 296hp mild-hybrid (MHEV) engine.

“Building on the success of the original Discovery Sport, this beautifully proportioned vehicle has been refined, enhancing its characterful exterior which compliments the engaging nature of the interior space,” said Gerry McGovern, Land Rover Chief Design Officer.

Customers can choose from 12 premium exterior paint colors and the option of a black contrast roof. All S, SE and HSE models feature Silver Atlas detailing on the grille, tailgate finisher and badging scripts, while purposeful R-Dynamic vehicles feature Shadow Atlas exterior accents, contrast stitching on the steering wheel and branded treadplates inside.

The new center console and introduction of more premium materials throughout transforms the interior of the Discovery Sport to create a practical, high quality space with added refinement. A clean, elegant three-spoke multi-function steering wheel with capacitive switches, a modern and easy-to-read instrument cluster and a 10-inch Touch Pro infotainment system, now standard, all contribute to creating a modern and well considered interior design3.

New seats across each of the three rows provide improved comfort and versatility, thanks to the second row 40:20:40 split fold and slide functionality, boosting the possible number of seat combinations to 246. Massage functionality is now also offered for the first time on Discovery Sport in the front row providing improved comfort. Customers can also choose a sustainable, non-leather Luxtex material made of a recycled polyester microfiber. Luxuriously soft, lightweight, durable and tear-resistant, Luxtex comes with the option of a softer, more tactile Suedecloth steering wheel.

Owners can personalize their vehicle with an optional Black Exterior Pack, available on both core and R-Dynamic models. The Black Exterior Pack features additional Narvik Black detailing on the grille and fender vents, extending to the hood and tailgate lettering. For the first time, Land Rover will now offer an optimized 21-inch wheel for the Discovery Sport. This complements the suite of 10 wheel designs across four sizes – ranging from 18 to 21-inches – that allow customers to personalize their vehicles even further.

Felix Brautigam, Chief Commercial Officer at Jaguar Land Rover said, “Discovery Sport has been a real sales success for Land Rover, leading the way for the past three years and selling almost half a million vehicles to date. During that time, it has won a number of awards and introduced a large number of new, younger families into the brand who are looking for something different.”

The unique versatility of the Discovery Sport has been further enhanced, with improved small item storage across all rows. New cup holders and repositioned storage spaces for third-row passengers6 mean there is now a place for nearly everything, while USB and 12-volt charge points (in total, six and three, respectively) are located conveniently throughout the cabin. Front row occupants can even benefit from the brand’s first use of wireless charging for compatible devices

Alongside a new key fob design, owners can add a powered tailgate and the Land Rover Activity Key – all intended to streamline the customer experience. These are available with a series of accessory packs that offer added functionality to the vehicle practicality, connectivity, driver assistance and parking. All-new optional Pet Pack accessories are designed to improve the Discovery Sport experience for owners and pets, alike.

Built on the new Land Rover Premium Transverse Architecture (PTA), the Discovery Sport provides greater versatility and refinement with a new body that is 13 percent stiffer than its predecessor and, together with rigidly-mounted subframes, quieter thanks to reduced noise and vibration intrusion into the cabin.

Designed with electrification in mind, the new architecture allows for the introduction of a new 48-volt mild-hybrid electric (MHEV) powertrain in the Discovery Sport. First launched in the new Range Rover Evoque, the hybrid system uses an engine-mounted belt-integrated starter generator to harvest energy normally lost during deceleration and stores it in an under-floor battery. At speeds below 11mph, the engine is designed to shut off when the driver applies the brakes. When pulling away, the stored energy is redeployed to assist the engine under acceleration.

A new smart rear view mirror, first debuted on the new Range Rover Evoque, called ‘ClearSight Rear View’ is also available on the Discovery Sport for the first time; transforming the rear view mirror into an HD video screen at the touch of a button to display a rear-facing camera feed onto the mirror ensuring the driver’s view remains unrestricted by passengers or large items in the back. The new system also provides a wider 50-degree field of vision using a camera positioned above the rear window and delivers clearer visibility in low light conditions1,2.

Another new technology called ‘ClearSight Ground View’ has also been introduced to help drivers navigate high city curbs or tackle rough terrain by projecting camera imagery that offers a virtual 180-degree view beneath the vehicle onto the central touchscreen1. This is the realization of ‘Transparent Bonnet’ technology, first previewed by Land Rover in 2014.

The digital transformation does not stop there. Wireless charging for compatible mobile devices is also introduced for the first time within the lower center console, while a 4G Wi-Fi hotspot5, alongside USB and 12-volt connectivity points on every row, ensure passengers remain charged and connected. Advanced and responsive Land Rover InControl® Touch Pro™ infotainment, fitted standard, is also available with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™3,4. Smart Settings use artificial intelligence algorithms to learn driver preferences, adjusting massage and seat positions, music and climate settings and steering column positioning to suit each driver.

The latest Discovery Sport is every inch a Land Rover vehicle, combining assured all-terrain handling with all-weather capability, including a wading depth of up to 23.6-inches. All-Wheel Drive and a second-generation Active Driveline system, standard with the P300 powertrain, is paired with Terrain Response® 2 technology to automatically detect the surface being driven on, adjusting the vehicle’s driving character accordingly1. New Advanced Tow Assist makes reversing with a trailer (up to 4,409lbs) more intuitive than ever1.

A suite of advanced driver assistance systems is offered across all models, including Adaptive Cruise Control with Steering Assist, which centers the vehicle in the lane based on road markings as well as maintains a following distance from the vehicle in front1. Other available advanced driver assistance technologies include Lane Keep Assist, Autonomous Emergency Braking and Driver Condition Monitor1.

The new Discovery Sport reaches U.S. retailers this summer. Pricing for the new Discovery Sport will be announced later this year. Visit LandRoverUSA.com for additional information, to locate a retailer and register your interest.

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