2019 Land Rover Discovery Sport vs. 2019 Toyota Rav4

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the Discovery Sport and Rav4 have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Discovery Sport has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Rav4’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Discovery Sport. But it costs extra on the Rav4.

The Discovery Sport (except SE)’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Rav4 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Discovery Sport and the Rav4 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

The Discovery Sport comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Rav4’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The Discovery Sport’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Rav4’s (6 vs. 5 years).

Engine

The Discovery Sport’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 34 more horsepower (237 vs. 203) and 67 lbs.-ft. more torque (251 vs. 184) than the Rav4’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. The Discovery Sport’s optional 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 83 more horsepower (286 vs. 203) and 111 lbs.-ft. more torque (295 vs. 184) than the Rav4’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Land Rover Discovery Sport (base engine) is faster than the Toyota Rav4:

 

Discovery Sport

Rav4

Zero to 60 MPH

7.9 sec

8.8 sec

Quarter Mile

16.2 sec

16.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

85.9 MPH

83.8 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

Regenerative brakes improve the Discovery Sport’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Rav4 doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Discovery Sport’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Rav4 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Discovery Sport has 4 gallons more fuel capacity than the Rav4 (18.5 vs. 14.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Land Rover Discovery Sport, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Rav4.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Discovery Sport’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Rav4:

 

Discovery Sport

Discovery Sport 286 HP

Rav4

Front Rotors

12.8 inches

13.8 inches

12 inches

Rear Rotors

11.8 inches

11.8 inches

11.1 inches

The Discovery Sport stops much shorter than the Rav4:

 

Discovery Sport

Rav4

 

60 to 0 MPH

122 feet

134 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Discovery Sport has larger standard tires than the Rav4 (235/60R18 vs. 225/65R17). The Discovery Sport HSE/HSE LUX’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Rav4 (245/45R20 vs. 235/55R19).

The Discovery Sport SE’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Rav4 LE/XLE’s standard 65 series tires. The Discovery Sport HSE/HSE LUX’s optional tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Discovery Sport SE has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Rav4 LE/XLE. The Discovery Sport HSE/HSE LUX’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels on the Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited.

Suspension and Handling

The Discovery Sport offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Rav4’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The Discovery Sport has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Rav4 doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Discovery Sport’s wheelbase is 2 inches longer than on the Rav4 (107.9 inches vs. 105.9 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Discovery Sport is 1.1 inches wider in the front and .7 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Rav4.

The Discovery Sport HSE handles at .82 G’s, while the Rav4 Limited pulls only .74 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Discovery Sport HSE executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.5 seconds quicker than the Rav4 Limited (27.4 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 28.9 seconds @ .57 average G’s).

Passenger Space

The Discovery Sport offers optional seating for 7 passengers; the Rav4 can only carry 5.

The Discovery Sport has .6 inches more front headroom, 1 inch more front legroom and 1.5 inches more rear legroom than the Rav4.

Cargo Capacity

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Discovery Sport with 5+2 Seating’s second row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Rav4 doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

The Discovery Sport’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The Rav4’s swing out door blocks loading from the driver’s side.

Towing

The Discovery Sport’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Rav4’s (4409 vs. 1500 pounds).

Ergonomics

Unlike the driver-only memory seat optional at extra cost in the Rav4 (except LE/XLE/Adventure), the Discovery Sport HSE/HSE Luxury has standard driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The Discovery Sport HSE/HSE Luxury offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Rav4 doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The Discovery Sport’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Rav4 LE’s standard fixed intermittent wipers only have one fixed delay setting, so the driver will have to manually switch them between slow and intermittent.

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The Discovery Sport offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Rav4 doesn’t offer headlight washers.

The Discovery Sport has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The Rav4 has an automatic headlight on/off feature standard only on the XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the Discovery Sport HSE/HSE Luxury offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Rav4 doesn’t offer cornering lights.

To better shield the driver and front passenger’s vision, the Discovery Sport has standard dual-element sun visors that can block glare from two directions simultaneously. The Rav4 doesn’t offer secondary sun visors.

The Discovery Sport’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Toyota charges extra for heated mirrors on the Rav4.

When the Discovery Sport is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Rav4’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Discovery Sport HSE has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Rav4 offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The Discovery Sport has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited.

The Discovery Sport HSE’s optional Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Rav4 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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