Land Rover Discovery Sport debuts line of 'versatile' SUVs

Land Rover’s Discovery Sport, above, will replace the LR2 in the United States.

NEW YORK -- Land Rover said the first vehicle in its new family of SUVs will be called the Discovery Sport.

It will go on sale in the United States in 2015, Joe Eberhardt, CEO of Jaguar Land Rover North America, said at the New York auto show.

The compact premium SUV will replace the LR2 in the United States and the Freelander in other markets, he said. But the new SUV will be "significantly different in a more versatile way," have more interior room than the LR2 and use the new design language from the Discovery concept unveiled in New York, he said.

The new Discovery family is important because it will be the second vehicle range for Land Rover. The first range, the Range Rover with three models, "has clearly been established as the pinnacle of the luxury SUV, especially in the United States," Eberhardt said. "It is clearly a family that is consistent in what it means to dealers and to the consumer in terms of those three models."

The family consists of the mid-sized Range Rover, the full-sized Range Rover Sport and the compact Evoque.

The Discovery family will be premium but "will add more everyday usability and versatility," Eberhardt said. "It allows us to be a little broader in our customer appeal."

The Discovery Sport will be priced in the mid-$30,000 range but not lower than the current LR2, said Eberhardt. "We are not going backward."

The 2014 LR2 has a base price of $37,525, with shipping.

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