Keith Adams, photography Andrew Elphick
Land Rover unveiled its electric Defender at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show. It’s currently a research project, but Land Rover says it could enter production if there’s sufficient demand.
It’s a full-electric vehicle that sees its standard 2.2-litre turbodiesel engine and gearbox replaced by a 70kW (94bhp), 243lb ft electric motor twinned with a 300-volt, lithium-ion battery with a capacity of 27kWh, giving a claimed range of more than 50 miles. The electric Defender is capable of eight hours of low speed off-roading between recharging – making this idea for farm or plant work.
The battery can be fully charged by a 7kW fast charger in four hours, or a portable 3kW charger in 10 hours. The electric system is suited to this type of driving, as its maximum torque is delivered at zero revs, and throttle control is exceptionally accurate. The concept car’s transmission is comprised of a single speed, 2.7:1 reduction gearbox combined with the existing Defender four-wheel drive system. A modified version of Land Rover’s Terrain ResponseSystem is also fitted.
The battery weighs 410kg and is mounted in the front of the Defender in place of the diesel engine. Kerb weight is 100kg more than a basic Defender 110 and ranges from 2055kg to 2162kg depending whether the body style is a pick-up, hard top or station wagon.