Land Rover previews LR2 replacement with official spy shots

Land Rover has one-upped spy photographers and published official spy shots of the upcoming Discovery Sport. Designed to replace the entry-level LR2, the Discovery Sport will make its public debut at the Paris Motor Show that will open its doors next October.

The spy shots suggest the Discovery Sport boasts a rounded front end that is visibly inspired by other members of the Land Rover lineup like the Evoque and the Range Rover Sport. The SUV appears to be noticeably bigger than the outgoing LR2 in all directions, and it features a more upright rear end that should clear up a generous amount of cargo space.

Surprisingly, the teaser shots confirm the Discovery Sport will be available with an optional third-row seat, a feature that will help it stand out from its main competitors.

Land Rover is keeping technical details under wraps until the Discovery Sport’s formal debut but rumors indicate the crossover will be powered by members of Jaguar – Land Rover’s new Ingenium family of turbocharged four-cylinder engines. Base models will come with front-wheel drive and more expensive variants will feature Land Rover’s proven all-wheel drive technology.

A performance-focused SVR-badged model powered by a supercharged V6 engine could join the lineup later in the production run.

The Land Rover Discovery Sport will go on sale shortly after debuting in the French capital. When it lands on these shores, it will fight head-to-head against the BMW X3, the Mercedes-Benz GLK Class and the Audi Q5.

The Discovery Sport will be the first member of Land Rover’s new Discovery-badged lineup of models. It will be quickly joined by a larger SUV designed to replace the LR4, and a smaller model aimed at the BMW X1 and the Audi Q3 could be given the green light for production in the coming months.