Land Rover enthusiasts rejoice: an all-new Land Rover Defender will be launched in 2020. After 67 years, the last sturdy off-roader was produced in 2016. Jaguar Land Rover is bringing it back but has shared few specifics so far, except for some beautifully-crafted but intentionally vague social media posts.
But a mountain of details about the new Defender was recently leaked according to Autocar. A series of slides showing key statistics about the Defender line was disclosed on the Land Rover fan forum, Disco4.com. No one seems to know where the leak took place, but it looks like it might be from an internal JLR meeting. It’s also possible these details could be incorrect.
Three Versions, with Two Coming in 2020
The leak shows three versions of the Slovakian-built Defender: the 90, the 110 and the 130. Customers will be able to buy the 90 and the 110 in 2020, and the 130 will be available in 2022. The version names harken back to the 1980s when the Defender family’s original names reflected their wheelbase lengths.
The Defender 90 is JLR’s halo vehicle. It will be available with five and six seats, which means that a three-abreast front seat might be possible. According to the leak, the 90 is geared to the “young, affluent fun-seeking individual”.
The 110 is what JLR calls its definitive Defender. Offering five, six, or seven seats, this model’s intended demographic is “couples and self-employed adventurers”.
The largest of all, the 130, is the “premium explorer” Defender that seats 8. It will be marketed to families and people who enjoy an active lifestyle and travel.
Dimensions: A Bigger Footprint This Time
The dimensions for the three Defender versions were also leaked, and they have grown a bit larger as compared to the first-generation vehicle.
The Defender 90 measures 170.2 inches and is barely the tallest of the three models at 75.9 inches. Its wheelbase is 101.6. All Defenders share the same width of 78.7 inches.
Coming in at 187.3 inches, the 110 is a bit longer than the 90. The wheelbase measures 119.0 inches and its height is 75.4 inches.
The 130 is an impressive 200.8 inches in length and shares the 110’s wheelbase spec of 119.0 inches. Because the 130 is longer than the 110 but shares the same wheelbase length, it seems as if the extra length past the rear wheels could provide more cargo capacity.
The Defender will have three gas engine and three diesel engines option. All versions will come standard with automatic transmission and all-wheel drive.
The available diesel engines are the D200, D240, and the D300, and they go from 0 to 62 mph in 10.0, 8.3, and 7.4 seconds, respectively. No information is known about what type of engine the D200 is, but the D240 is a four-cylinder and the D300 is a straight-six engine. Of the three, only the D300 will be available in North America, and it is expected to arrive in 2021.
The P300, P400, and the P400e plug-in hybrid are the Defender’s gas engines, and they will be available for the 2020 model year. All gas engines sold in the U.S. will be straight-sixes. Of these engines, the P400e plug-in hybrid engine is fairly quick, taking only 5.9 seconds for 0 to 62 mph and having a torque boost from 200 to 476 lb-ft.
A Flexible Platform
All versions of the Defender share a new aluminum platform that uses JLR’s Modular Longitudinal Architecture, which is similar to the architecture that supports the current version of the Range Rover Sport and the Land Rover Discovery. With this architecture, JLR has the option to build mild hybrid, plug-in hybrid or full-electric vehicles in the future.
Features: Standard Plus Three Trim Levels
The leak revealed a heap of information about the Defender’s features at various trim levels.
The standard Defender will have 18-inch wheels, LED highlights, eight-way adjustable seats, a six-speaker 140W sound system, a seven-inch instrument cluster, and a 10-inch touchscreen.
The first trim level up from standard is the S which, besides the standard features, has front fog lights, 12-way semi-powered seats, and a 12-inch digital instrument cluster.
Included with the SE trim level are 20-inch Apollo wheels, premium LED headlights with high-beam assist, power rear-view mirrors, 14-way adjustable electric front seats, a 10-speaker 370W Meridian sound system, and automatic parking.
The most upscale of the Defender trim levels is the HSE. Features include matrix LED headlights and 18-way adjustable leather electric-memory seats with climate control. It also has what JLR calls its “Drive Pack and Park Pack”, which we think may be a package of various assist and control systems.
Many Options for Customization
Besides the trim level, Defender buyers will have 4 option packs to choose from: Capability, Interior Upgrade, Exterior, and Convenience. The leak provided no information about what these option packs entail.
But it seems like JLR is trying to win more customers for the Defender by offering a variety of customization options. Automotive News Europe points out that it has lost profits to vehicle modifiers particularly in the off-roader’s previous generation, so it makes sense that JLR is providing a wide selection of ways to individualize the Defender.
Buyers can also personalize their Defenders through badged accessory packs. They are Explorer, Adventurer, Urban, and Country and sound like they are geared for pure off-roading, comfortable long-distance travel, city and town driving, and short trips to the countryside, respectively.
Everything Else Is Still Under Wraps…Mostly
For now, the leak is all we have. JLR will probably continue to parcel out small bits of information about the Defender through social media posts and well-controlled updates on its website. The unveiling is slated for September 10, 2019, at the Frankfurt Auto Show in Germany, but we’ll probably have to wait until 2020 to see it in U.S. dealerships.
We might be able to sneak a peek at the Defender in another way, however. Car and Driver came across a Lego kit version of the second-generation SUV that will be sold in the U.K. soon after the real vehicle is revealed in Frankfurt. The toy version was designed in partnership with Land Rover and may have been advertised ahead of the unveiling by accident.
For Defender fans stateside, though, a Lego version will have to do until the real Defender lands on U.S. shores.
All images provided by the manufacturer unless otherwise noted.