Land Rover Evoque and Disco Sport join EV crossover fray

Land Rover Evoque and Disco Sport join EV crossover fray

Two all-new electric models will follow hot on the heels of the pricier Velar EV

T he next-generation Range Rover Evoque and Land Rover Discovery Sport will also be offered exclusively with electric power, together taking JLR into the heart of one of Europe’s fastest-growing and most competitive vehicle segments. These two mid-sized crossovers will again be substantially differentiated but closely related under the skin, serving effectively to rival the likes of the Lexus RZ 450e and Volvo XC40 Recharge respectively.

Land Rover Discovery Sport

They are expected to launch close together within the next two years, following the arrival of the electric Velar, and will play a fundamental role in helping JLR achieve its lofty electrification goals. By 2030, 60% of all Land Rovers sold will be pure-electric, and six years later it will stop selling combustion cars completely. Together, the Evoque and Disco Sport – each priced from £34,000 – accounted for around a third of Land Rover’s near-300,000 global sales last year, despite the production of each being restricted by the limited supply of semiconductors. Although the current-generation cars will be approaching the end of their expected life cycles next year, they have both been extensively and regularly updated – most significantly gaining plug-in hybrid options – since launch, which is a testament to their importance to the firm.

The duo will initially continue to serve as the entry point into the Land Rover line-up (and the wider JLR portfolio, when the Jaguar E-Pace is retired). However, the company has suggested a fourth EMA-based model could follow the Velar, Evoque and Disco Sport down the production line in Merseyside, reigniting long-dormant speculation that a cheaper ‘baby Defender’ SUV is on the cards. JLR has given no indication of this mysterious new entrant’s positioning, though, and an expansion of the Discovery family remains a possibility.

Aside from the expected visual and technical reinvention, the next-generation Evoque and Discovery Sport will benefit from significantly more spacious interiors and improved packaging, particularly given that the decision to make them electric-only means the EMA platform does not need to be engineered to accommodate a combustion engine up front or a transmission tunnel.

Whether the extra space could facilitate the introduction of a seven-seater remains to be seen, but the three-row electric crossover segment is still in its infancy (the Mercedes EQB is the only mid-sized option currently on sale) so a Discovery Sport EV with seven seats could stand relatively unrivalled if launched soon. Together with heightened practicality, the electric Evoque and Disco Sport SUVs promise to be much faster on the road and more capable off road than their predecessors, thanks to JLR’s new torque-dense electric motors. They will also benefit from the same competitive efficiency rating and 800V fast-charging capacity as the Velar. JLR has so far remained tight-lipped on the make-up of its next-generation EV batteries, beyond confirming that they will ultimately be supplied by parent company Tata and produced at a European plant, before final assembly at JLR’s Hams Hall site in Warwickshire. It is unlikely that Tata’s factory will be operational before the EMA trio launches, so the company will source cells from a ‘luxury battery supplier’ in the meantime.

While the two cars will continue to sit at the entry point to the Land Rover line-up, they will no doubt be significantly more expensive than today’s models, both as a result of the increased costs of EV production and in line with the brand’s push upmarket. In the past four years, the average price of a JLR car has climbed from £44,000 to £71,000 and it is highly likely that the Land Rover range will open at nearer the £50,000 mark in the electric era.

Discovery Sport EV will share tech with the electric Evoque

Arrival of a PHEV shows the enduring appeal of today’s Evoque. New EV is expected to eclipse today’s Discovery Sport off road.

The electric Evoque and Disco Sport will initially serve as the entry point into the Land Rover line-up

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