The move is part of Jaguar Land Rover's electrification initiative.
Land Rover intends to offer the new Defender worldwide, including in the U.S. The new model will move to an aluminum-intensive monocoque chassis rather than the vehicle’s venerable body-on-frame setup. Over time, the company will add multiple body styles. Power will come from JLR’s range of four-cylinder Ingenium engines.
In September, Jaguar Land Rover announced plans to electrify every new product that it launches from 2020, including fully electric, plug-in hybrid, and mild hybrid powertrains.
The first entries in this onslaught of electrified Land Rovers are the plug-in hybrid variants of the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport that arrive in the United States for the 2019 model year. Both of them use a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder and electric motor for a combined output of 398 horsepower (297 kilowatts) and 31 miles of EV range.
Land Rover has already started trying to get the message out that electrification doesn’t mean that its vehicles lose any of their off-road abilities. The company recently stage a stunt where a Range Rover Sport PHEV raced a pair of swimmers over a flooded causeway in the English Channel.
The next PHEV model from Land Rover will be a version of the Evoque. It’ll reportedly use a different powertrain than the bigger Range Rovers by possibly using a hybrid-assisted 1.5-liter engine three-cylinder.
If you want a vehicle more like the classic Defender, then the Projekt Grenadier could be the answer from British chemical tycoon Jim Ratcliffe. He wants to build an off-roader with inspiration from the classic Land Rover, including a body-on-frame chassis. His goal is for his SUV to be reliable than the older models, though.
Source: Motor Authority