One of Land Rover’s most iconic vehicles (along with the Range Rover) isn’t even sold here in the United States. The Defender has been around since 1983 and has remained largely unchanged, part of the reason it isn’t offered here. It is old and it’s clearly time for a reboot.
The competition (aka Jeep Wrangler) is alive and well, posting better sales numbers than ever before. There is clearly an opening in the market for Land Rover to breathe new life into the Defender lineup. The company plans to do just that with an all-new, thoroughly modern redesign. The replacement reportedly isn’t due for years, and a few concepts have been shown that are thought to preview its design – such as the DC100.
The question many have wanted to know is if the new model would be sold in the U.S. Land Rover’s image here is largely focused, particularly on the Range Rover line. The Freelander/LR3 have never sold too well, and now the Evoque has stolen the spotlight (and rightfully so). To nail down some info, The Car Connection spoke with LR’s North American Chief Executive Officer Andy Goss at the Paris Motor Show. He stated that the next Defender would be developed with U.S specifications in mind – unlike the current car.
That means Land Rover can decide to offer it here if they so choose. Many outlets have run this as if it’s U.S-arrival is decided. Later on Land Rover issued a statement saying the they intend to engineer the next Defender to meet our standards, but that they face many obstacles before its reintroduction to the market is official. Interesting. We highly doubt the SUV would be developed globally and not sold here – it could be a big seller for Land Rover. With the Wranger tearing up the charts, the only shame is that it can’t get here quicker. Word on the street is that it has been pushed back to 2017 – that’s a long way off.