The next generation of the Land Rover Defender is set to debut in 2018 and make its way across the ocean to US shores. The existing Defender is being phased out in December 2015, but Land Rover didn’t initially release any details on a successor or when it would be available.
Now there are reports from Automobile Magazine that the all-new Defender will be out in 2018 and it will be sold in the US market. There will be at least five body styles, including short wheelbase two-door with metal roof, short wheelbase two-door with soft top, long wheelbase four-door with metal roof, short wheelbase two-door pickup, and a long wheelbase four-door pickup.
All versions of the new Defender will come with Jaguar Land Rover’s Ingenium gas and diesel engines and either a six-speed manual or nine-speed automatic transmissions. Low-range transfer case and two differential locks will be available at an additional cost.
The current plan is to connect two subframes to a new lightweight unibody for increased rigidity rather than positioning the live axle in the iron ladder frame. There will also be a Terrain Response system specifically designed for the Defender as well as hill climb and descent, adaptive extended range headlights, and surround view cameras. Not in the mix are active body control or air suspension