RE: Land Rover revives the V8 Defender

RE: Land Rover revives the V8 Defender

Wednesday 17th January

Land Rover revives the V8 Defender

Limited edition model will be quickest factory Defender ever thanks to 405hp naturally-aspirated V8



We probably should've seen this coming. Despite the massive fanfare whipped up by Land Rover when it finally ceased production of the Defender in 2016, there was no curtain call for the V8 version - a memorable feature of the model since its Series III days. At the time this seemed like a missed opportunity (given the amount of money people were suddenly prepared to part with). But Gaydon, it turns out, hadn't missed a trick; it simply held back its trump card until it could be passed around with the birthday cake.

So today, as part of its 70th anniversary, we get 150 examples of the Defender Works V8 - a re-engineered homage to the original, Rover-powered concept from 1979. "Re-engineered" is obviously the key phrase here: Land Rover hasn't contravened its own end-of-production rule by building them from scratch post-2016, but instead went to the trouble of reaquiring the cars based on a strict late-model criteria (i.e. registered after 2012, with less than 20k on the clock). Post transformation, they will technically become a Land Rover Classic product - and then be re-registered to reflect the changes made underneath. Gaydon expects the majority to end up on private plates.


The detail of what's occurred beneath the hood is unlikely to dampen buyer interest. The last (official) V8 Defender launch occurred in 1998 when Land Rover installed the 4.0-litre engine from the second generation Range Rover in another limited run of sought-after anniversary cars. These had 193hp (the original Series III Stage One cars had 91hp from the smaller, carburetted 3.5-litre V8). The Works car gets 405hp. And if more than twice as much weren't enough, it's delivered in intriguing format: Land Rover having removed the supercharger from its current 5.0-litre engine to provide us with that rare thing: a naturally-aspirated V8.

We'd venture that this is better suited to the Defender than its extremely spirited forced induction sibling, although it still delivers 380lb ft of torque (at 5,000rpm) - and does it via the same eight-speed ZF transmission that you'll find elsewhere in Land Rover's current lineup. As you can see from the pictures, incorporating the joystick-style gear lever has required a certain lack of sympathy, but the two-speed transfer box remains, as do the heavy-duty differentials front and back. Inevitably the Works car (in 90 wheelbase format) will hit 60mph quicker than any production Defender before it at 5.6 seconds, and top speed has modestly increased to 106mph.


The performance gains have inevitably required some fettling to occur in the chassis department, with Land Rover fitting what it calls a handling kit (comprised of new springs, dampers and anti-roll bars) alongside uprated brakes and 18-inch diamond-turned Sawtooth alloy wheels and all-terrain tyres. Inside, the Works cars get full Windsor Leather trim and the Classic Infotainment system.

The glossy spec is appropriate because the Defender Works V8, in its shorter 90 format (the 110 is available, too, although the split is unconfirmed), will start at £150,000. Expect that to be no barrier whatsoever to the model's customer base - but if it's a little too rich for your blood, Land Rover Classics is about to offer some 'inspired by' aftermarket packages, including power upgrades for the existing diesel engines and the fast-road suspension kit. Further confirmation that Gaydon is not quite done with the Defender just yet.

 

(Update: original story edited to clarify that Land Rover didn't hold back chassis numbers while the Defender was still being manufacturered.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author
Discussion

aaron_2000

Original Poster:

1,943 posts

17 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
The initial message was deleted from this topic on 17 January 2018 at 00:34

Pericoloso

36,211 posts

97 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
"We've finished production of Defender "

Some months later......

"Apart from these 150 units to charge a silly amount of money for"

It's a bit like Pagani......"this is definitely the last of the line Zonda"......except for the next one.

PRND

1,038 posts

32 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
I'm stunned.

Complete marketing ploy and £150k?! Does LR think this is a G63 AMG?

We'll hear in a few years time they held back another 50 shells for another anniversary model.

Where's the new defender anyway? Focusing on too many Range Rover incarnations, the new defender will sell like hotcakes too!

RoverP6B

3,698 posts

62 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Inevitable... but those wheels are awful. Can't they spare the Defender any of McGovern's bling? Something like this would be much more appropriate, surely...

Personally, I'd want the proper Rover V8, or maybe an LS3 in a LWB, not the Jag motor...

mondeomk4

48 posts

25 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
It is the fuel injected Jaguar-Land Rover engine,




Somewhere along the line ‘naturally-aspirated’ for me seems to have stopped meaning ‘carburetted’.
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JerryF

66 posts

108 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Love it - all except the price.

Cold

5,243 posts

24 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
JerryF said:
Love it - all except the price.
Agree. It looks great but I can't help but suspect that someone is making more than a tidy profit with this idea.

DegsyE39

539 posts

61 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
150k and you still get a steering wheel that seems to of been plundered from a mid 80's mini metro hehehehe

Still ''discerning buyers'' hehe

Edited by DegsyE39 on Wednesday 17th January 05:43

Puddenchucker

2,782 posts

152 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
This is just a cynical marketing ploy by Land Rover for people with more money than sense.









Where do I sign?


(Unfortunately, I don’t have £150k to splash on motor)

skyrover

11,801 posts

138 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Why the hell did they not offer these from the factory originally?

Crap engines (and gearbox/axles) were always the defender's weakness

easytiger123

1,417 posts

143 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
This has actually done what economists from Adam Smith to JM Keynes had said was impossible. It's made a G63 AMG look like a bargain. Bravo.

rossub

1,827 posts

124 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Well done Land Rover, this is the only Defender I’ve ever had any want for!

powerstroke

7,403 posts

94 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
More lamb dressed as mutton , No thanks I like my 4x4's tough cheap and reliable !!!

Burwood

9,914 posts

180 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
PRND said:
I'm stunned.

Complete marketing ploy and £150k?! Does LR think this is a G63 AMG?

We'll hear in a few years time they held back another 50 shells for another anniversary model.

Where's the new defender anyway? Focusing on too many Range Rover incarnations, the new defender will sell like hotcakes too!
As soon as I saw the headline I thought ‘bet they ask 100k’. I’m wrong. Look at the interior. Magic beans

skyrover

11,801 posts

138 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Realistically it's not even worth 50k.

Practically, as a machine it's worth about 35k new... but as the collectors piece which these will inevitably become, the sky's the limit.

You can't apply logic to emotion and speculation.

yellowjack

10,742 posts

100 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Gentrification. It's been happening gradually all through the Land Rover's life though.

My first drive in a Land Rover was a (petrol) Series III Air Portable. Strike knob, pull lever, lift seats to fill fuel tanks, don't forget to switch from one tank to t'other, etc, etc.

Then we got the Defender. That was a big change - lots of improvements over the Series III. A lot easier to drive cross country from a gearbox point of view. Simple diff lock and a low range gearbox that didn't need an instruction plate to work it out.

Then came the Land Rover "Wolf". That's what it was called in the army, anyway. "So much more power than the Defender 110/90 stuff that you'll need a familiarisation course just to get it on your FMT600". Loads got damaged, some written off, in accidents caused by inexperienced drivers rolling them by driving too fast in inappropriate conditions. The difference between this and the Series III I'd first encountered? It wasn't remotely the same vehicle.

I had drives in a few of the army's V8s too. Quite a few at ARRC, winterised for deployment to Norway. Nice wagons, but getting to drive them was an issue as the MT boys didn't like to issue them if they could palm you off with a knackered 110 diesel instead.

But £150,000 for a Land Rover? Nah. Diamond turned alloy wheels? How long would they last if it was used off-road properly? Full leather inside? No bloody use to someone in muddy cargo pants with a brace of Spaniels and a shotgun. We all know where these are going to end up. And it won't be because they want, nor particularly need a Land Rover, but because they need a visible demonstration of their wealth to sit on the drive, or lug their Harrods sale bargains home in.

I'm not saying I wouldn't have one if i could afford one and was one of the 150 best palm greasers in the queue. But I'd have liked to have seen that power train available in a Land Rover model dressed in overalls, not a dinner jacket. It's not the car you want to arrive at the opera in - it's the car your 'muscle' arrives in, one in front, and one behind the limo (and that's a real demonstration of wealth right there...)

edo

16,699 posts

199 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Will sell like hot cakes.

A rather awful marketing ploy and a silly amount of money but you cant blame them for jumping on the bandwagon.

Plenty of alternatives out there by tuning houses for far less, but it wont stop it selling.

Shame for £150k they couldn't change the dreadful steering wheel.

ecs0set

2,049 posts

218 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Oh yes, much want! And it's cheap as well. Here, please take my £15,000. Wait... what?!

coppice

4,782 posts

78 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
Big in South Ken but in Swaledale? Not so much . It is even out of reach of the paramilitary/survivalist 'one life live it ' faction who clog up the roads where I live some weekends with their ghastly remapped , smoky Defenders and 18th hand Discoveries.

What next ?Somebody finds some ancient Austin Gypsy chassis and relaunches another 'icon'? Might need to think some more about the name though ...

TooMany2cvs

28,748 posts

60 months

Wednesday 17th January
quotequote all
mondeomk4 said:
It is the fuel injected Jaguar-Land Rover engine,

Somewhere along the line ‘naturally-aspirated’ for me seems to have stopped meaning ‘carburetted’.
It never did.

"Naturally aspirated" - as opposed to "forced induction" (turbo, supercharger etc) - has never said anything about the fuel supply, just everything about the pressure of the air supply. There's a clue in "aspirated"...

(Naturally aspirated diesels?)