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Land Rover teases new-generation Defender

Getting defensive: Land Rover has released a single teaser image of the new-generation Defender ahead of its 2019 global reveal.

Disguised all-new Land Rover Defender off-roader shown ahead of 2019 global reveal

19 Dec 2018

LAND Rover has begun the official teaser campaign for the all-new iteration its legendary Defender off-roader, which is set for a global reveal in 2019.

A single image has been released via Land Rover’s social media channels showing the new Defender with a camouflage paint job being loaded on the back of a truck, accompanied by the caption ‘Do not unwrap until 2019’.

First global customer deliveries of the new model will begin in 2020, with no concrete Australian timing available at this stage.

The new Defender looks to retain the same boxy styling as its predecessor which was discontinued in early 2016, resurrecting a nameplate that has existed since 1983 and could trace its roots back to the original Land Rover from 1948.

A tailgate-mounted spare tyre is visible, while the new model looks to have significant ground clearance, a steep departure angle, and simple, black alloy wheels.

Few concrete details have emerged of the Defender, although it has been confirmed that it will be offered in a family of models, ranging from basic, utilitarian variants up to more luxurious, family-oriented models, taking up the role the earlier Discovery models had in Land Rover’s portfolio.

Multiple wheelbases will be offered, continuing the tradition of the old model which was offered in 90, 110 and 130-inch wheelbase lengths. Three- and five-door versions are expected to be offered, as are pick-up body styles.

To aid in on-road refinement, the Defender will lose its hardy ladder-frame chassis underpinnings in favour of Land Rover’s new Modular Longitudinal Architecture (MLP) which will underpin the larger models in Land Rover’s portfolio, and will allow for the fitment of hybrid and electric powertrains.

Also improving on-road handling, the old Defender’s solid axles will be done away with in favour of independent suspension on all four corners, however the brand has stressed durability has to be one of the new model’s hallmarks.

Land Rover has said it wants the Defender to be the most off-road capable vehicle on the market while being more capable than its predecessor, and will feature a greater level of electrical assistance systems including the latest iteration of the company’s Terrain Response traction control system.

According to British publication Autocar, more affordable versions of the Defender will come paired with 2.0-litre turbo engines from the Ingenium family, while more top-end versions will score a 3.0-litre straight-six Ingenium donk. Plug-in hybrid and mild-hybrid powertrians will be offered.

There is also a good chance that the six-speed manual in the old Defender will be replaced by automatic transmissions – most likely an eight-speed ZF unit – while full-time four-wheel drive is expected to remain.

More concrete details on the all-new Defender will be revealed closer to its reveal next year.

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