Land Rover has debuted a new 1,5-litre, three-cylinder plug-in hybrid powertrain in its Discovery Sport and Evoque.

Jaguar Land Rover South Africa says the new variants – which will wear the P300e badge – are at this stage “unconfirmed” for a local introduction, although adds “more information will follow in due course”.

The 147 kW three-pot combines with an 80 kW electric motor (mounted on the rear axle) to provide what the firm describes as “sustainable, efficient all-electric performance for shorter trips” plus “traditional power or combined petrol and electric drive for optimum efficiency on longer journeys”.

Total system outputs are 227 kW and 540 N.m, while an eight-speed automatic transmission ships standard. Land Rover says the Evoque P300e boasts a CO2 emissions figure as low as 32 g/km and an all-electric range of 66 km (plus a 0-100 km/h time of 6,4 seconds), while the Discovery Sport P300e manages 36 g/km and 62 km (with a claimed sprint time of 6,6 seconds).

When driving, energy generated by the engine during acceleration or by braking is used to charge the battery. When plug-in charging is required, the 15 kWh pack can be powered up from empty to 80 percent in a claimed 30 minutes using a public rapid charger.

This same charge takes “between one hour and 24 minutes, and six hours 42 minutes” at home, depending on whether the car is plugged into a dedicated wallbox or a normal domestic socket.