It seems impossible to even contemplate, but due to stubborn "rules" Land Rover is talking seriously about shelving the Defender - all three wheelbase models - very soon.
In a world of "please take me seriously!" SUVs, the mighty Defender - the most stubbornly practical and longest-lived Land Rover model - is on the chopping block. The carmaker is presently researching the market for a suitable replacement as the current versions will not meet the approaching 2013 rules.
A spokesman for the company said that there is a great enthusiasm inside Land Rover for a successor to the Defender although it is essential to its feasibility to discover exactly who the buyers would be. The sales of Defender annually reached between 20,000 and 24,000 units in the past, but to compensate for the development cost for a replacement, the new model must hit sales numbers reaching 40,000.
It has been argued that one possible solution would be to utilize the current Discovery’s T5 chassis/suspension, which is likely to be shelved for the succeeding generation of Discovery and Range Rover Sport models for lighter weight versions anyway. That would certainly be the most cost-effective approach, but clearly there is a lot of research and discussion left on the table before any decision can be made. We will certainly stay on this one for you, and report any changes as soon as they become available.
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