Juliet Reviews…The Land Rover Defender

This really is the strangest time as we have cars arriving in South Africa, but the media has to wait just like everyone else to get to drive them. Our launches are now virtual, you see. But that doesn’t take away from the excitement, especially when it is something as highly anticipated as the new Land Rover Defender – the most capable Land Rover ever created.

It has inherited the precious model’s naming convention and so is available in 110 guise which pays tribute to the 110-inch wheelbase of the previous generation. This 110 will be available with either five, six or 5+2 seating configuration. If you are after the short wheelbase Defender 90, you will have to wait till next year I’m afraid.

But for now, you can opt for the flagship 3.0-litre straight six-cylinder P400 which features mild hybrid technology and produces 294 kW and 550 Nm. Or there is also a choice between the 2.0-litre variants with a P300 turbocharged diesel producing 177 kW and 430 Nm.

There is just so much choice when it comes to this new Defender. There are four specification packs namely the base Defender, S, SE and HSE models. But standard across the range are things like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, 3D surround cameras, all-wheel drive with a high- and low-range transfer box, air suspension, Terrain Response, Connected Navigation and LED headlights.

But wait, there’s more choice! Over and above the four specification packs is a top of the line Defender X which is based on the HSE but adds a black contrast rood and bonnet. Chrome accents, orange brake calipers, rear recover eyes and a 700W Meridian Surround Sound system to name but a few of the specs. And then, of course, there is a Defender 110 First Edition, which is available for the first year of production and is based on the SE models but adds things such as First Edition badging, a Black Pack, 20-inch wheels, and a refrigerated centre console among other features.

And if it is personalisation you are after, there are four packs you can choose from which include the Explorer pack, Adventure pack, Country pack and Urban pack. And all of these are upgradeable with extended options like deployable side steps, deployable roof ladders, front A-frame protection bars, deep-sided rubber or luxury floor and boot mats, and different wheel options.

It comes with all the bells and whistles when it comes to the latest technology that Land Rover has to offer, including ClearSight Ground View and a new Wade programme that automatically softens the throttle response, sets the heating and ventilation to recirculate cabin air, locks the driveline and adjusts the ride height to its off-road setting. You will see by the pricing list just how many options you have.

Defender 110 Pricing:

Defender 110 177kW D240                            R1,050,100

Defender 110 177kW D240 S                         R1,096,100

Defender 110 177kW D240 SE                       R1,155,600

Defender 110 177kW D240 HSE                    R1,259,800

Defender 110 177kW D240 First Edition        R1,260,600

Defender 110 221kW P300 Standard             R1,050,100

Defender 110 221kW P300 S                         R1,096,100

Defender 110 221kW P300 SE                       R1,155,600

Defender 110 221kW P300 HSE                     R1,259,800

Defender 110 294kW P400                            R1,187,000

Defender 110 294kW P400 S                         R1,224,200

Defender 110 294kW P400 SE                       R1,286,700

Defender 110 294kW P400 HSE                     R1,387,900

Defender 110 294kW P400 First Edition        R1,377,100

Defender 110 294kW P400 X                         R1,574,500

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