As the tech-minded daughter of a tech-savvy dad, I have always loved clever technology and smart gadgetry that smooths the path through life. So I have just had one of those sassy doorbells installed, a genius piece of kit that captures a video recording of anyone who calls at the house, and sounds an alert on my smartphone in notification. It even lets me speak remotely to the caller from wherever I am: upstairs, out in the garden, or somewhere else in the world. How cool is that?
It also lets me keep an eye on the Discovery Sport, parked in its regular spot opposite the porch and directly in view of the constantly monitoring camera. That’s reassuring for security, and also handy as an alert for when my cat decides that a nice warm bonnet is a good place to sunbathe. But that high bonnet has a safety secret beneath. With a 2.0-litre turbo diesel motor packed into the engine bay, it could be a potential hazard for any pedestrian incautious enough to step into the road. But the bonnet is automatically deployable in the event of a collision, to deflect away from the engine top’s inevitable hard points and reduce the risk of injury. It’s a worthwhile safety feature for urban driving, and one that is quite rare in these safety-conscious times.
I’m a big fan of the Disco Sport’s smoothly sinuous styling, from its distinctive clamshell bonnet to its elegantly symmetrical tail. That shapely bonnet is a key feature of Land Rover design and helps give the front of the car its strong street presence. But it’s the back that so well completes the design and finishes it off in an eye-pleasing way. Sorry Land Rover, but I’m not a particular fan of the rear design of our car’s big brother in the range. The oddly asymmetrical tailgate and left-set rear number plate of the full-size Discovery is a strange anomaly. It’s meant to hark back to an early model and bring a touch of generational distinction to the current car. But it’s a detail that I’m glad the Discovery Sport doesn’t share.
Our lovely long-termer quickly caught the eye of the electrician who came to install my new hi-tech doorbell. Currently running a double-cab pickup, he confided that he was planning to change vehicles soon and was looking for something better suited to a blend of family and worktime use. The Discovery Sport was one possibility he planned to explore, so here was an opportunity for a closer look. I reckon he was smitten in the way the rear seats fold, the generous practicality of the boot space, and just how much kit the boot will hold as a workhorse carrier. The yawning chasm of 829 litres of stowage with the car in five-seat mode was a clincher. All his working kit could fit in there, tidily concealed under the roller cover, he reckoned. That could well mean one more in prospect to add to the year’s tally of new Land Rovers joining the roads.
Date arrived 12th April 2019
Fuel economy 32.1-34.9mpg (combined) 31.6mpg (on test)
The symmetrical design of the tailgate, which makes the Discovery Sport better looking at its rump end than its bigger brother Discovery.
It’s a lot of car, but comes at rather a high price. With the optional equipment fitted to our already well-kitted HSE, the up-front bill is over £51k!