Compact SUV of the Year 2015: Land Rover Discovery Sport
The Land Rover Discovery Sport is the 2015 Auto Express Compact SUV of the Year, with the Dacia Duster and Porsche Macan commended
The Discovery Sport has gone straight to the top of the compact SUV class thanks to its family friendly cabin, Range Rover-inspired design and high-quality finish. It marks a new era for Land Rover, as the squared-off lines of the Freelander it replaces make way for a curvy design that takes inspiration from the Evoque, with which the Sport shares its platform. Its overall shape points the way for future Land Rover models.
The raised rear end and a revised suspension layout mean there’s plenty of boot space, and there’s a third row of seats in the back for added versatility. The classy cabin boasts Range Rover quality and has the latest touchscreen infotainment system that’s far more user-friendly than before.
On the road, the Disco Sport is a refined and comfortable cruiser, while an optional nine-speed auto delivers smooth shifts. The steering is sharp, body control is excellent and there’s surprising grip from the all-weather tyres.
And while the existing 2.2-litre diesel is a little gruff, all new cars will get the brand’s efficient Ingenium 2.0-litre engine.
Where the Sport really trumps rivals is that it’s also hugely talented off-road, with permanent 4WD and Land Rover’s excellent Terrain Response system adapting the transmission and electronics to suit the conditions. Even without the larger Discovery’s locking differentials and low-range gearbox, the Sport can clamber over rough terrain with the confident agility of a mountain goat.
Discovery Sport TD4 HSE (£37,595)
All Discovery Sport models come generously equipped, and the HSE is positively luxurious. If you order a Sport today, you’ll get a model powered by the new Ingenium TD4 diesel, which delivers even greater efficiency without compromising performance.
The rugged and dependable Dacia Duster is one of the best new car bargains available on the market today. It has room for a family of five and their luggage, and a four-wheel-drive transmission is available for go-anywhere capability. Plus, all of this comes in an SUV with a supermini price tag.
This smart model introduces Porsche’s world-famous sports car handling to the compact SUV class, yet the Macan boasts real depth of talent as well. That’s because it’s a highly practical family car – and if you go for the diesel-engined version, you can expect excellent fuel efficiency, too.
Auto Express New Car Awards 2015
For complete, in-depth coverage of the New Car Awards 2015, buy your collector's edition copy of the Auto Express magazine now...
- 1IntroductionThe winners of the 2015 Auto Express New Car Awards have been announced
- 2Car of the Year 201512 years since the first generation model took the crown, the new Volvo XC90 is the 2015 Auto Express Car of the Year
- 3City car of the year 2015The Skoda Citigo is the 2015 Auto Express City Car of the Year, with the Hyundai i10 and Renault Twingo commended
- 4Supermini of the Year 2015The Volkswagen Polo is the 2015 Auto Express Supermini of the Year, with the Mazda 2 and Skoda Fabia commended
- 5Premium small Car of the Year 2015The Mini Cooper is the 2015 Auto Express Premium Small Car of the Year, with the Audi A1 and Citroen DS3 commended
- 6Compact family Car of the Year 2015The SEAT Leon is the 2015 Auto Express Compact Family Car of the Year, with the MINI 5dr and Skoda Octavia commended
- 7Family Car of the Year 2015The Skoda Superb is the 2015 Auto Express Family Car of the Year, with the Mazda 6 and Volkswagen Passat commended
- 8Estate Car of the Year 2015The Volkswagen Passat Estate is the 2015 Auto Express Estate Car of the Year, with the SEAT Leon ST and Skoda Octavia Estate commended
- 9MPV of the Year 2015The Citroen Grand C4 Picasso is the 2015 Auto Express MPV of the Year, with the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer and SEAT Alhambra commended
- 10Crossover of the Year 2015The Nissan Qashqai is the 2015 Auto Express Crossover of the Year, with the Citroen C4 Cactus and Mazda CX-3 commended