Honestly, the world would’ve been one badass offroader poorer if Land Rover didn’t go ahead and announce the beastly 2020 Defender. The previous model of this range came out in 2007, with a small update rolling out in 2012, but it’s been more than a decade, and we’re glad we waited.
The new Defender, announced last week, sports some of the best car-tech available right now. This makes it reasonably future-proof, featuring some of the things we love most about the Discovery and Range Rover ranges — including 360-degree cameras and sensors, that give you a total view of what the wheels are doing at any given moment.
Offroad at your will
Lucky for you, orders are already being taken on the Land Rover South Africa website, and the all-new Defender comes in three trims, all thanks to the accessory pack options. This includes Explorer, Adventure, Country and Urban — developed with all types of Land Rover enthusiasts and drivers in mind. These will initially be offered in the form of the long-wheelbase Defender 110, with the short wheelbase Defender 90 expected at a later date — not sure exactly when yet.
When it comes to raw power, these machines are fitted with the best for each situation. The Defender comes with a petrol, diesel and hybrid engine option for both the 110 and 90 body styles, while trim levels will range from the top-of-the-range Defender X models, as well as Standard, S, SE, HSE specification packs. There’s also an exclusive First Edition model for the purists, of course. All of the below engine specifications will come with automatic gearboxes and will be all-wheel drive.
Diesel: Here you get the D240, with its 2.0-litre 4-cylinder twin-turbocharged diesel motor. It produces 177 kW and 430 Nm, and is capable of a 0-100 kmph sprint in 9 seconds.
Petrol: No petrol engine can top the P300 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbocharged petrol motor with 221 kW and 400 Nm. This one’s slightly faster than the diesel, with an 8-second sprint time to 100kmph.
Also Petrol: The P400 is a 3.0-litre 6-cylinder turbocharged petrol feature 294 kW and 523 Nm. This one will be the fastest Defender, as it can go from 0-100kmph in just 6 seconds sprint to 100 kph. All vehicles feature all-wheel drive and all have automatic gearboxes.
Ready for pretty much anything
The 2020 Defender features 291 mm of ground clearance. Even more, the longer 110 has an approach angle of 38-degrees, a 28-degree break-over angle and a 40-degree departure angle (in off-road mode). It will also wade through water that is an insane 900 mm deep.
This model offers five, six or 5+2 seating configurations, with a loadspace behind the second-row seats of up to 1,075 litres, and as much as 2,380-litres when the second row is folded down. On the other hand, the Defender 90 can take up to six occupants in a vehicle the length of a compact family hatchback, according to Land Rover.
Remember the tech we touched on earlier? Yeah, that’s what we’re here for! The 2020 Defender features Jaguar Land Rover’s new Pivi Pro infotainment system, which we can’t wait to test. In our experience, Land Rover never disappoints on the infotainments system and connectivity, so this one’s bound to be good.
Using this onboard system, Land Rover will send software updates directly to the car without the need to take it in for a service, which seems to be the new norm for car tech and software. Additionally, the Defender can also come with a SIM slot, which will turn the vehicle into a hotspot, no matter where you are. This is ideal for going ‘off the grid’ where you definitely won’t have access to public WiFi spots.
Okay, we’re keen to test the new Defender and see how it holds up against its legendary predecessors with its new tech and overall capability. Check out the price list below, for all the Defender options with the different accessory trims.
|Defender 90 177kW/221kW||R948,000||R996,500||R1,060,200||R1,156,600||R1,142,200|
|Defender 90 294kW||R1,078,400||R1,113,800||R1,172,500||R1,268,900||R1,254,500|
|Defender 110 177kW/221kW||R999,000||R1,042,800||R1,099,500||R1,198,700||R1,199,500|
|Defender 110 294kW||R1,129,400||R1,164,800||R1,224,300||R1,320,700||R1,310,400|