Review: Land Rover Defender (2020)

Improved handling and refinement for both on and off-road, diesel or hybrid powertrain, available in short or long-wheelbase.

Not available until 2020.

Land Rover Defender (2020): At A Glance

The Land Rover Defender van is back with new tech, lower running costs and improved on-road refinement. Both the Defender 90 and 110 get two seats and a completely flat load area, with the rear windows replaced with metal panels. 

The 2020 Defender is offered with four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, as well as a six-cylinder petrol mild hybrid: however, Land Rover hasn't confirmed which powertrains will feature in the Defender Commercial, but the range is expected to include diesel and hybrid options. 

The diesel engine range is made up of four-cylinder engines producing 200PS or 240PS, badged D200 and D240 respectively. Both are paired with an eight-speed automatic gearbox, and produce 430Nm of torque. This takes the D200 to 62mph in 10.3 seconds, while the D240 takes 9.1 seconds. Official WLTP fuel economy figures for the diesels range from 31.4 to 31.7mpg.

The Defender is heavily geared for off-roading, but loses its rigid axels and separate chassis. The 2020 model uses a lot of tech from the Discover and Ranger Rover models, with four-wheel drive and configurable Terrain Response system. All models get 291mm of ground clearance and a wading depth of 900mm.

Short front and rear overhangs mean it’ll be able to tackle steep hills and challenging terrain, say Land Rover, while ClearView Ground View tech will allow the driver to use the infotainment screen to see the area usually hidden by the bonnet. The new body gives the Defender 110 approach, breakover and departure angles of 38, 28 and 40 degrees (Off Road height) respectively.

The Defender 90 gets coil suspension as standard, while the 110 will probably match the passenger car version with air suspension. Land Rover claims the Defender has a maximum payload of up to 900kg and a static roof load of up to 300kg. Towing capacity will match the best in class pick-ups, with the Defender capable of shifting 3500kg.

What does a Land Rover Defender (2020) cost?