Land Rover's V8-powered Defender finally unveiled with 386kW
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Like anything with wheels and an engine, off-roaders are always more fun when you've got power to play with, and while Land Rover's Defender was perfectly fine in standard form, we aren't going to say no to more power.
Just yesterday, the British marque whipped the covers off the highly-anticipated Defender V8, which gets that iconic 5.0-litre supercharged V8 engine that Jaguar Land Rover is famous for.
In this application, the burly powerplant pumps out a hefty 386kW and 625Nm, which is enough to propel the humungous off-road SUV to 100km/h in just 5.2 seconds before topping out at 240km/h.
An eight-speed automatic transmission is in charge of sending power through to all-four wheels, and Land Rover has added larger anti-roll bars as well as tuning the dampers to deal with this extra grunt.
In this V8 model, Land Rover has updated the Terrain Response system to include a dynamic program that lets drivers “exploit the more dynamic character and handling balance”. In real-world terms, this translates to better throttle response and better tuned Continuously Variable Damping.
On the outside, you'll be able to spot a Defender V8 from the quad exhausts, bespoke badging, and the Xenon Blue painted brake calipers up front. The V8 is exclusively available in Carpathian Grey, Yulong White, and Santorini Black, and will come with a black roof.
On the inside, the main differences are new leather upholstery, and an Alcantar--wrapped steering wheel.
“The 5.0-litre V8 supercharged engine further enhances the unique character of the Defender,” senior manager of Powertrain Advanced Engineering at Jaguar Land Rover, Iain Gray said. “It sounds fantastic and delivers incredible performance – providing new levels of driver appeal. Our engineering focus has been to optimize powertrain calibration for Defender to deliver both responsive on-road performance and fine control off-road – all without compromising Defender’s unstoppable all-terrain capability and wading ability.”
The Defender V8 will be releasing in both 90 and 110 guises, but New Zealand pricing and availability is yet to be made public.