The Land Rover Defender – one of the few genuinely classic cars you can still buy new – is to go out of production in 2015. The iconic off-roader, which has been on sale since 1948 in one form or another, gets the chop in the face of escalating safety regulations and a changing market place. Land Rover has confirmed that it will be replaced.
The Land Rover Defender is identified with the UK in much the same way as the K6 telephone box, black London taxis and the Mini are – and it’s now the last bastion of original 1940s automotive hardware. The Defender’s also loved by HRH The Queen and was used as Sir Winston Churchill’s runabout. It even starred in the latest Bond film, Skyfall. Okay, so the number of parts shared between the Land Rover of 1948 and the Defender of today are miniscule – rather like Trigger’s broom.
However, it’s still fundamentally the same vehicle, with the same DNA flowing through it. The biggest evolutionary points following the Land Rover’s life were the addition of long-wheelbase versions, the brilliant Series III facelift by David Bache and the arrival of the V8 Stage 1 – and, to show you just how much it hasn’t changed since 1948, here’s a gallery of each major model through the years.
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.
Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...
Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.