Test Drive Notes Library
- The next-step-up from entry-level luxury Evoque SUV, the Discovery Sport is designed to compete with the likes of Audi’s Q5 and the Lexus RX350. It’s nicely designed and looks good, both inside and out.
- The ride is nicely balanced. The Discovery Sport holds the road well. It feels well planted to the ground, and corners well for an SUV. The ride is on the firm side, but at the same time, it was reasonably comfortable on the highway. It handled rough sections of road pretty well, with an occasional shudder on some bumps.
- The 9-speed transmission is smooth and quiet.
- The steering feels excellent. Very well weighted—not to light, not too heavy.
- The interior is upscale and classy. It’s clean-looking, with good quality materials, and with looks appropriate to a luxury car.
- There are knobs and buttons on the dash for the most frequently-used settings, including the ventilation and entertainment options. We did miss a radio tuning knob, though. Maybe we’re holdouts.
- There’s a video screen that’s large enough to view easily, with a pretty straightforward touch-screen interface that defaults to a “home” with four squares—media, phone, navigation, and climate. We found it clear, if a little slow.
- The excellent backup camera is quick to activate, with plenty of useful information.
- There’s room in the back seat for passengers to travel comfortably, and a modest amount of cargo room in the back, too.
- Automatic stop-start was very smooth.
- There’s a large shade covering a moonroof that, when slid back, brings in plenty of natural light.
- Who would want a Discovery Sport? Someone who would like a Q5 or RX-300, but wants something none of his neighbors have. Someone who wants to say “I’m outdoorsy, but I shower very frequently.”
Test Drive Notes Library
- Our major dislike for this car is with the Landrover Discovery Sport’s 2-liter, turbo-charged, 4-cylinder engine. There’s an old-style turbo-lag-like hesitation in acceleration, which makes it hard to drive smoothly. You step on the gas, and get modest power, and then the turbo kicks in and the Discovery Sport takes off on you, and you have to back off the gas.
- Your passengers will notice your less-than-smooth driving. As will you when they start turning green.
- Jaguar Land Rover is coming out with a new engine in late 2016, which we hope will alleviate this problem.
- Some of us found the seats uncomfortable on long drives, though around town we found them to be perfectly adequate. The seats are bolstered on the side, which makes for a sporty look, but bothered the larger-of-ass tester in our group, whose name we won’t mention, even though it’s Ray.
- The ride is on the stiff side, which won’t suit all luxury car buyers.
- The Discovery Sport has what must be the slowest power windows on the planet.
- While we appreciated not having to dig down into multiple menus to operate the basic controls, the Land Rover alternative is lots of buttons on the dashboard, which can be confusing.
- Expect the usual Rover reliability. Meaning…. not great. To add insult to injury, expect parts to be expensive. This would be a great vehicle to lease.
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