This is the new Land Rover Defender, reimagined and reborn in the 21st century after 71 years of making waves around the world.
On the exterior, the unmistakable silhouette is new yet looks very familiar. Designed to look tough and fun at the same time, the main highlight of the new Defender’s design is that it is like a canvas, allowing owners to personalise it however they want, just like the outgoing Defender.
Key features on the exterior include the minimal front and rear overhangs which provide excellent approach and departure angles, Alpine light windows in the roof, the side-hinged rear tailgate, as well as an externally-mounted spare wheel.
The stripped-back personality of the original Defender has been embraced inside as well, where structural elements and fixings usually hidden from view, are exposed.
Innovative features in the cabin include a dash-mounted gear shifter to accommodate an optional central front ‘jump’ seat, three (5,6, 5+2) seating configurations, up to 2,380-litres of storage space with the rear seats folded, durable rubberised flooring, as well as the optional folding fabric roof which allows the second row passengers to stand up and enjoy some top-down driving.
Taking centre-stage is of course, Jaguar Land Rover’s new Pivi Pro infotainment system which is more user-friendly and intuitive now.
Underpinning the new Defender is Land Rover’s new purpose-engineered D7x architecture, which is 95% new and based on a lightweight aluminium monocoque construction to create the stiffest body structure Land Rover has ever produced.
Land Rover claims that it is three times stiffer than traditional body-on-frame designs, providing perfect foundations for the fully independent air or coil sprung suspension and supports the latest electrified powertrains.
The new body architecture provides ground clearance of 291mm and world-class off-road geometry, giving the 110 approach, breakover and departure angles of 38, 28 and 40 degrees (Off Road height) respectively.
Its maximum wading depth of 900mm is supported by a new Wade programme in the Terrain Response 2 system, which ensures drivers can ford deep water with complete confidence.
On dry land, Land Rover’s advanced ClearSight Ground View technology helps drivers take full advantage of Defender’s all-conquering capability by showing the area usually hidden by the bonnet, directly ahead of the front wheels, on the central touchscreen.
Also making its debut in the new Defender is the Configurable Terrain Response system , which allows experienced off-roaders to fine-tune individual vehicle settings to perfectly suit the conditions, while inexperienced drivers can let the system detect the most appropriate vehicle settings for the terrain, using the intelligent Auto function.
And then, there is the air suspension, providing an off-road ride height lift of 75mm and supreme ride comfort across all surfaces. An additional 70mm of lift means the air system can raise the body by a maximum of 145mm when needed, while Elegant Arrival automatically lowers the body by 50mm to aid access.
As for powertrains, The new Defender is offered with four engine choices:
- P400 3.0-litre Ingenium inline-six mild-hybrid – 400 PS / 550 Nm
- P300 2.0-litre Ingenium four-cylinder – 300 PS / 400 Nm
- D200 2.0-litre inline-four cylinder - 200 PS / 430 Nm
- D240 2.0-litre inline-four cylinder - 240 PS / 430 Nm
All of the engines listed above are mated with an eight-speed automatic gearbox with a two-speed transfer case which sends power to all four wheels. A Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) is also slated to join the range next year.
That said, the new Land Rover Defender will be available in 90 and 110 body designs, with up to six seats in the 90 and the option of five, six or 5+2 seating in the 110.
The model range comprises Defender, S, SE, HSE, First Edition and top of the range Defender X models and customers will be able to personalise their vehicle in more ways than any previous Land Rover with four Accessory Packs.
The Explorer, Adventure, Country and Urban Packs on the other hand, each give Defender a distinct character with a specially selected range of enhancements. The exclusive First Edition model features a unique specification and will be available throughout the first model year of production.
In addition to the Accessory Packs, new Defender is available with the widest choice of individual accessories ever assembled for a new Land Rover, with everything from a Remote Control Electric Winch, Rooftop Tent, and Inflatable Waterproof Awnings to more conventional tow bar systems and roof racks.