Thanks to James Bond, We Now Know Exactly What the 2020 Land Rover Defender Looks Like
It looks just as boxy as its iconic predecessorby Ciprian Florea, on LISTEN 05:33
It’s been three years since Land Rover discontinued the iconic Defender and the boxy SUV is about to make a comeback through a new generation. Land Rover has already confirmed that the new Defender will debut in September 2019, but we have yet to see it without camouflage. Until today, when someone spotted the SUV on the movie set of the upcoming James Bond movie "No Time To Die" and posted a photo on Instagram. The SUV is camo-free and shows the new design in all its glory.
The new Land Rover Defender Looks New But Familiar
The new Defender looks decidedly more modern and some familiar elements are gone
Not surprisingly, having already seen camouflaged prototypes, the new-generation Defender retains the boxy looks of its predecessor. Much like Mercedes-Benz did with the G-Class, Land Rover intends to keep its Defender fanbase by offering a new-generation SUV that remains true to the iconic shape.
Of course, the new Defender looks decidedly more modern and some familiar elements are gone, but the overall shape and vibe are still there.
It's boxy, it has almost flat front and rear fascias, flared wheel arches, and even the traditional Alpine windows.
In the front, Land Rover ditched the old-school, individual bumpers and the big, rectangular grille, but kept the position of the them almost intact. The grille is narrower now, but they’re flanked by big headlamps. The latter are no longer round, but the rectangular covers hide round LED shapes. The engine hood is flat and features a bulge in the center, just like the old Defender. Even the cutout is similar and includes only the center section of the hood. This is a rather unusual feature on modern cars, which usually have hoods that extend from fender to fender.
The new Defender also borrows some lines from the old DC100 concept
The profile is also similar. It retains the boxy lines and the tall beltline that passes right under the windows. The beltline is straight and featureless, just like on the old Defender. Likewise, there are no character lines on the door or the side skirts. It’s pretty obvious that Land Rover wanted to keep things as simpler and familiar as possible.
There’s no view of the rear end, but it sure looks like the tailgate is as straight as they get, just like on the second-gen Defender. But it will have a wider tailgate for enhanced loading capability.
The old Defender wasn't very practical due to its small hatch and Land Rover fixed that with a more modern tailgate.
The SUV will also feature modern LED taillights, most likely placed vertically on the sides.
All told, the new Defender borrows lines from the DC100 concept, an SUV that Land Rover unveiled back in 2011. This vehicle also inspired the company’s current models.
The Land Rover Defender Returns as a No-Nonsense SUV
The new Defender should be a bit longer and wider overall
Not a lot is known about the third-gen Defender, but it should remain a no-frills SUV focused on utility and off-road capability. After all, the Defender made Land Rover famous through its rock-solid reliability and hauling and off-road ability and Land Rover should want to keep this heritage alive.
Actually, the new Defender will be a better rock crawler.
It will benefit from a more modern chassis, a stiffer structure, and all of Land Rover’s new tech and driving assistance systems for off-road exploring. The new SUV should be easier and safer to drive in just about every environment.
Word has it Land Rover will keep the classic trims, named 90, 110, and 130. These numbers represent the Defender’s wheelbase, so there will be three lengths, ranging from 90 to 130 inches. The new Defender will debut with a 110-inch wheelbase, with the 90- and 130-inch versions to be added later on. However, the new Defender should be a bit longer and wider overall. The trunk should be bigger as well due to the slightly longer rear overhang and better packaging. Land Rover might retain the option that adds folding side-mounted seats for enhanced people hauling capability.
Land Rover will also offer a plug-in hybrid variant called P400e
Engine choices will be quite diverse, but unlike the previous Defender, which went through a large number of four-, five-, six-cylinder and V-8 engines, the new SUV will be limited to a couple of displacements. Specifically, it will be limited to Land Rover’s current family of Ingenium engines, which includes 2.0-liter four-cylinder and 3.0-liter six-cylinder mills.
There will be two diesel trims called D200 and D240 and two gasoline models called P300 and P400. Land Rover will also offer a plug-in hybrid variant called P400e.
Pricing will start from around £45,000, which will place it above the Discovery Sport and the Range Rover Evoque. It will be on par with the Range Rover Velar and slightly more affordable than the Discovery. The range-topping trim will probably cost in excess of £70,000. For reference, the Jeep Wrangler starts from £44,955, while the Mercedes-Benz G-Class comes in at £94,580 before options.
Read our full speculative review on the 2020 Land Rover Defender SVR.
Read our full review on the Land Rover Defender.
Read our full review on the 2011 Land Rover DC100 Concept.