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Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition: a £150k special. Image by Land Rover.

Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition: a £150k special
Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition features a 405hp V8, does 0-60mph in 5.6 seconds.
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News homepage -> Land Rover news

Aa new Land Rover Defender? I thought it had been killed off?

You thought correctly - and so did we. But let's be careful here; production hasn't restarted at Solihull. Instead, 150 specially selected Defender 90 and 110 models (that's short- and long-wheelbase, in case you were wondering) have been chosen for some astonishing 're-engineering' treatment by Land Rover Classic, to mark the 70th anniversary of the original Series I Landie launching in 1948.

What has Land Rover Classic done to the Defender?

It has gone mad. Stark, raving mad. Clearly thinking that the AMG versions of the similarly aged Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen were a good idea, Land Rover Classic has followed suit. Stuffed under the bonnet of the Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition is a normally aspirated, 5.0-litre petrol V8. It delivers 405hp at 6,000rpm and 515Nm at 5,000rpm, where the last-of-the-line turbodiesel Defenders made do with 120hp and 360Nm. It still has all-wheel drive - with a two-speed transfer box, heavy-duty front and rear differentials and a torque-biasing centre diff - but now there's an eight-speed ZF automatic with a Sport mode and a 'Pistol Shifter' in the cabin, which handles the road-driving duties. The top speed of the Works V8 is limited to 106mph, but in 90 format, the 70th Edition can do 0-60mph in 5.6 seconds. Cripes!

What has Land Rover Classic done to the chassis?

Well, the live axles front and rear remain, as does the recirculating ball steering; good luck with that, folks. However, the brakes are uprated to 330mm front, 300mm rear discs gripped by four-pot callipers, while a handling kit works on the springs, dampers and anti-roll bars to make the Defender V8 more capable in corners. Although precisely how capable, we're not sure...

Looks pretty cool, though, doesn't it?

Well, of course - it IS a Defender, after all. And, we might add, we're delighted Land Rover has decided to re-install a V8 engine after so many years. Anyway, back to the looks. Outside, you'll spot '70th Edition' badging, 18-inch diamond-turned Sawtooth alloy wheels with 265/65 R18 all-terrain tyres, machined aluminium for the door handles, fuel filler cap and 'Defender' bonnet lettering and bi-LED headlamps. Eight body colours, two of them satin finish, are available, which can be teamed with a contrast Santorini Black roof, wheel arches and radiator grille. Inside, while the Defender's cliff-face dash remains (and we've already covered the pistol-grip gear lever), the differences amount to full Windsor Leather interior trim swathing the dashboard, door cards, headlining and Recaro sports seats, while the Classic Infotainment System is also fitted.

Go on, then - what's the price for all this?

Ah. Well, don't expect it to be the £34,200 that a 110 Heritage would have set you back. Indeed, with just 150 to be built for the 70th anniversary, you can bet these things will be highly sought-after, both now (as investment pieces) and in the future (when they'll no doubt be extremely hard and very expensive to get hold of). Nevertheless, if you go direct to Land Rover Classic, it will relieve you of £150,000 for the 90 version.

Yikes! That's a lot! Anything else?

Well, if you're a Defender owner already, a select number of high-performance upgrades inspired by the Defender Works V8 will be made available to purchase soon from Land Rover Classic, including power upgrades for the TDCi diesel models, as well as fast-road suspension and braking kits.

But why did Land Rover Classic decide a V8 was necessary?

Oh, there have been V8 Landies before. The Series III had a Stage 1 V8 way back in 1979 and the Defender 50th Anniversary Edition also had eight cylinders. So let's allow Tim Hannig, Jaguar Land Rover Classic's director, to explain. He said: "It's fitting that we've been able to release the full potential of the iconic Defender, whose much-loved shape remains synonymous with Land Rover, 70 years since it was seen in public for the first time. The idea of reintroducing a V8 Defender was something we were discussing as far back as 2014, when we were still building the Defender in Solihull. We knew the demand was there for a powerful and fast Defender; the Land Rover authenticity is the ultimate finishing touch for discerning clients purchasing these collectors' edition Defenders."



Matt Robinson - 17 Jan 2018


2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.

2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.2018 Land Rover Defender Works V8 70th Edition. Image by Land Rover.









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