Trucks & SUVs

New Land Rover Defender Literally Drags Old Defender

Tug of war has always been the highest in scientific studies of brute strength. Its effectiveness in proving who is stronger has proven to be 100 percent accurate. From schoolyards to settling major geopolitical conflicts, Tug of war is the clearest way to determine strength. Now that we agree on those scientific truths, we can aptly judge the results of this, the ultimate test of strength, between the old Land Rover Defender and the 2021 Land Rover Defender. 

As in the schoolyard, weight and traction play a major role in the outcome of tug of war. Without traction, the power doesn’t matter. But weight is also a major factor that cannot be overlooked, making the theoretical match a little harder. The folks at Carwow stepped up to the plate to take the theoretical from the page to the field. 

Land Rover vs Land Rover

Motor1 lays out the differences between the two Land Rover Defenders, starting with the old dog. Representing the old school is a 2014 Land Rover Defender. I know what you’re thinking, “ 2014 doesn’t sound very old.” Well, in Land Rover Defender years, it’s largely the same as any other for the past 40 years or so. 

LAND ROVER DEFENDER
LAND ROVER DEFENDER | Daniel Pier/NurPhoto via Getty Images

This Defender has a 2.2-liter turbodiesel engine making 122 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. The old Defender is analog through and through, including the manual gearbox and manual 4×4. To help with off-road traction, this Defender is booted with heavy-duty off-road tires and clocks in right around two-tons of British beef. 

The 2020 Defender is a whole other beast

They may share the same name, and they may share the same general style, but these two trucks are worlds apart. So literally everything we laid out for the Defender, the new one is either opposite or just doubly true. For instance, The 2020 Land Rover Defender has double the horsepower at 240 to the old one’s 120.

The new Defender, of course, has an automatic transmission and has automatic four-wheel-driving modes. Not only is the new Defender opposite in that regard, but it also has multiple driving modes, the likes of which weren’t even conceived of in the old Land Rover Defender. 

RELATED: The 2021 Land Rover Defender Is Surprisingly Reasonable

The off-road driving modes tell the motor how much power to send to each wheel at any given moment to maximize traction and stability. These off-road modes make the competition nearly open and shut. The old Land Rover Defender has no such sophistication. 

The battle of old versus new

In the first bout, the old Defender holds its own surprisingly well. Although it gets pulled back by the 2020 Defender, it is slow and hard-fought. It finally ends in a horn-locking draw – sort of. The old Land Rover Defender can’t quite be pulled past the cone but can’t make up any ground. We can count it as a moral victory. 

The Second bout ends brutally and quickly, with the 2020 Land Rover Defender snatching the older one across the line in a hurry. It was a bloodbath. 

The younger, stronger, heavier, better-equipped Land Rover Defender won

Well, of course, it did! It was stronger in every category. The old dog never stood a chance. Let’s call this what it is, just a bit of good fun. We old heads were rooting for the classic Defender, but we knew how it was going to go down in our hearts. The good news is, the classic still looks like a million ducks, and the new one looks like a million butts.