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Crap… Has Land Rover wrecked the Defender?

Jeff Glucker October 3, 2018 All Things Hoon 14 Comments


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Our old pal Jonny Lieberman posted camo-clad photos of a Land Rover Defender development car. It was likely trotting around the Gaydon roads as it’s being put through its paces before a final upcoming reveal. This is a big vehicle for Land Rover, as the Defender has been an iconic symbol of the brand for decades. While we’re fine with the stylistic direction applied to the Land Rover and warmed up to the looks of the Discovery, I’m not sure a “softer” Defender will work.

The latest Land Rover Discovery summed up in less than five minutes

In fact, I’m pretty sure of it.

Mercedes-Benz knew it couldn’t cut off the edges of its G-Class. The German automaker made it better, but it never lost sight of the original appeal of that particular Military-bred machine. The same should be true of the Defender, but now I fear that won’t be the case.

And that’s a damn shame.

  • Maymar

    Given how aggressive the cammo flares out at the C-Pillar, I’m cautiously optimistic that this bares nearly no resemblance to the production model, and it’s largely fake. I know we’re not getting away from some aero trimming, but that’s too obscured to make a fair judgement just yet.
    Although, realistically, if you can still get it with rubber floors and not an excess of electronics (in other words, if it remains a utilitarian fleet-grad vehicle), I’m willing to overlook some disappointing styling.

    • Jeff Glucker

      That’s exactly what I’m hoping for as well

    • outback_ute

      The entire hood and the doors down to rub strip level (where they would go if they still existed) are heavily padded.

      From this I’m tipping it looks like a Discovery with bigger wheel arch flares, basically another matryoshka doll generic Land Rover.

      I’m not confident of a work spec version, let alone live axle/s or a pickup. Probably not even a swb, which was the very first Land Rover that this thing is theoretically continuing…

      • Maymar

        I guess, is it plausible that a production-friendly interpretation of this concept is hiding under the cammo? I think so, and if so, well, it could be worse (but again, the spec sheet will be the real definer of worse, and you’re probably not wrong about them dropping the live axles).

        • outback_ute

          Yes I’m thinking a cross between that and the Discovery

  • theskig

    This piece of sh*t is called “Jeep Renegade”…
    I can expect everything, even worse.

  • Zentropy

    Oh no. Let’s hope not. Reminds me of a stilted second-gen Scion xB.

  • The Land Rover looks like an over-sized veion of my Kia Soul!

    • neight428

      Thought the same thing.

  • neight428

    The good news is that Fiat is making a new version of the Defender.

    • Zentropy

      The bad news is that Fiat is making it.

      • neight428


  • BA

    Why couldn’t they just restyle the original defender, a little better aero updates, use aluminum frame, composite body, 4 and 6 cylinder turbo engines and minimal electronic luxuries. Why make yet another range rover LR4 blah blah blah? Those things are not off road worthy utilitarian rigs.

    • outback_ute

      Possibly too much ‘from scratch’ and the Jeep and Landcruiser 70 series between them have the market fairly well catered for. They do leave a fair opportunity for a proper new Defender, but the business case would by no means be a no-brainer IMO.