Land Rover today revealed details of the redesigned 2020 Discovery Sport, which introduces mild hybrid and plug-in powertrains for the brand's compact SUV. Based on the new PTA (premium transverse architecture) platform, the 2020 Land Rover Discovery Sport returns as the brand's least expensive model and its smallest seven-seater.
Land Rover says its new platform was designed around advanced electrical systems that support mild hybrid and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) powertrains. The company has not specified which engines and drive systems it will offer in Canada, but we expect the mild-hybrid setup will be available in Canada, as it is in the latest Evoque.
The MHEV system, as Land Rover abbreviates it, uses regenerative braking to feed a small battery pack. During acceleration, that energy is fed back to the car's belt driven starter/generator to provide back up for the internal combustion engine.
In Europe (where you can order the new Disco Sport as of today), Land Rover offers a vast array of choices under the hood. A 2.0 L turbo diesel comes in three variations, ranging from about 150 to 240 hp, and a 2.0 L gasoline powered mild hybrid that starts out with just shy of 200 hp and can be optioned to a 245 hp version with 269 lb-ft of torque. We expect Canadian models will come standard with that last option. Last year, all Disco Sport variants came with a 2.0 L gas four-cylinder with either 237 or 286 hp.
Land Rover's press release also talks up a plug-in hybrid variant (PHEV) with a three-cylinder gas engine set to join the range later this year. Again, we're awaiting confirmation from Land Rover Canada as to its availability here.
Look for all Disco Sport's to come with four-wheel drive and a nine-speed automatic transmission for the Canadian market, as it was with the outgoing model. A front-wheel drive/manual combo included among European offerings is not likely to make the Disco Sport's trans-Atlantic journey. For all the new stuff under the hood, Land Rover has played it safe with the Disco Sport's new styling, which gently updates the outgoing vehicle's appearance.
Land Rover says the Discovery Sport's new interior is more spacious, offering additional storage for items large and small. There's new technology, too. The optional "ClearSight" camera setups provide a useful view for off-roading and blind spot-free visibility to the rear. A new Touch Pro infotainment system works with the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone platforms. Wireless smartphone charging is available, and there are wired charging ports for all three rows of seats. As well, Land Rover says the Disco Sport uses AI to learn the driver's secondary control preferences over time.
Arrival timing in Canada to be announced at a later date.