Jaguar Land Rover Introduces New Defender
Electrified powertrains introduced to Defender with mild-hybrid and plug-in electric vehicle options, as well as petrol and diesel engines.
Land Rover’s designers re-envisioned familiar Defender trademarks for the 21st century, giving the new 4x4 an upright stance and Alpine light windows in the roof, while retaining the side-hinged rear tailgate and externally-mounted spare wheel that make the original so identifiable.
Gerry McGovern, Chief Design Officer, Land Rover, said: “The new Defender is respectful of its past but is not harnessed by it. This is a new Defender for a New Age. Its unique personality is accentuated by its distinctive silhouette and optimum proportions, which make it both highly desirable and seriously capable – a visually compelling 4x4 that wears its design and engineering integrity with uncompromised commitment.”
The stripped-back personality of the original Defender has been embraced inside, where structural elements and fixings are usually hidden from view have been exposed, with the emphasis on simplicity and practicality. Innovative features include a dash-mounted gear shifter to accommodate an optional central front ‘jump’ seat, which provides three-abreast seating across the front like early Land Rovers. The Defender 110 offers five, six or 5+2 seating configurations, with a loadspace behind the second-row seats of up to 1 075 l, and as much as 2 380 l when the second row is folded. The Defender 90 will be able to accommodate six occupants in a vehicle the length of a compact family hatchback.
User-friendly features include practical touches and advanced technological innovations. Durable rubberized flooring shrugs off the spills of daily adventures and once-in-a-lifetime expeditions, providing a brush or wipe clean interior. An optional full-length Folding Fabric Roof provides an open-top feel. It also allows passengers in the second-row seats of the Defender 110 to stand up when parked to provide the full safari experience**.
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 Defender has been through more than 62 000 tests for engineering sign-off, while the chassis and body architecture have been engineered to withstand Land Rover’s Extreme Event Test procedure – repeated and sustained impacts, above and beyond the normal standard for SUV and passenger cars. During development testing, prototype models have covered millions of kilometres across some of the harshest environments on earth, ranging from the 50-degree heat of the desert and sub 40-degree cold of the Arctic to altitudes of 10 000 ft in the Rocky Mountains in Colorado.
The new body architecture provides ground clearance of 291 mm and world-class off-road geometry, giving the 110 approaches, break-over and departure angles of 38, 28 and 40 degrees (Off-Road height) respectively. Its maximum wading depth of 900 mm is supported by a new Wade program in the Terrain Response 2 system.
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. A choice of advanced petrol and cleaner diesel engines ensure new Defender has the power, control, and efficiency for any environment, while a Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) powertrain will join the range next year providing the prospect of silent EV-only progress.
At launch, the petrol line-up comprises a four-cylinder P300 and a powerful six-cylinder P400, featuring efficient Mild Hybrid Electric Vehicle technology. Alternatively, customers can choose from a pair of four-cylinder diesel – the D200 and powerful D240 – both of which deliver fuel economy of 7.6 l/100 km and CO2 emissions of 199 g/km (NEDC equivalent).
New Defender is as technologically advanced as it is durable. It introduces Land Rover’s new Pivi Pro infotainment system. The touchscreen is intuitive and user-friendly, requiring few inputs to perform frequently used tasks.
In addition, the new Defender takes Software-Over-The-Air (SOTA) technology to a new level, with 14 individual modules capable of receiving remote updates. By downloading data while customers are asleep at home or in far-flung locations, the new Defender will get better with age: as electronic updates cascade down to the vehicle immediately, without delay and with no need to visit a Land Rover retailer.
Nick Rogers, Executive Director, Product Engineering, Jaguar Land Rover, said: "We've embraced Defender's stunning capability and minimalistic, functional interior to reinvent the icon for the 21st century. New Defender gives us the licence to do things differently, to push the boundaries and do the unthinkable, without ever losing the character and authenticity of the original. From the start we had an absolute obsession with functionality beneath the skin, from choosing the right materials through to state of the art connectivity. The result is not only the most capable Land Rover ever made but also a truly comfortable, modern vehicle that people will love to drive."
New 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, First Edition and top of the range Defender X models, as well as standard, S, SE, HSE specification packs. 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 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 year of production.