Land Rover is preparing its future for electrification. The Range Rover range will soon receive its first electric drives, with the latest reports suggesting that Land Rover will have electric models from 2025.
The Defender has been the off-roader of choice for off-roaders for several decades. With a style that has remained almost unchanged for a long time, in 2020 the latest and most modern evolution was introduced. Concerning its predecessors, the new Land Rover Defender offers a completely different approach, not only in design or equipment but also in mechanical systems. The current range already includes electrified versions, but in the coming years, we will see how the Defender becomes a 100% electric SUV.
This has been discovered by Auto Express through the filtering of different reports. The published data includes much more profound changes than what we can guess at first glance. The Brits want to maintain the current aesthetics of the Defender for the electric versions. Except for minor necessary modifications, the aesthetics will be practically identical, but under that bodywork, the platform will be completely new. The current model uses the premium D7 lightweight architecture which, although it supports plug-in hybrid systems, is not capable of incorporating a 100% electric train.
That means the Land Rover Defender will change its platform to include fully electrified versions. The change is expected to take place during the mid-cycle commercial update of the current generation, scheduled for 2026. From then on, the British SUV will begin to enjoy the firm’s MLA Flex platform, the same structure already used by the latest models in the Range Rover range. This change will not mean altering the dimensions either, maintaining the three current bodies: 90, 110, and 130.
According to the information collected, the electric Defender is already underway. The engineers are working on both the chassis and the adaptation of the mechanical system. The first official data will begin to be known in 2024. That same year road tests will begin. The duration of the tests will be at least a year and a half, which means that the official presentation will take place at the end of 2025. The commercial launch is scheduled for a year later.
Although there are no public figures, there is an estimate of the electrical range that is expected to be achieved. As collected by the British medium, the Land Rover Defender EV will be able to show a range of up to 300 miles, about 480 kilometers, in the WLTP cycle. That means that the size of the battery will be greater than 100 kWh of capacity. A format of large proportions that will be combined with at least two electric motors capable of generating the usual all-wheel drive of the model. Much of the development will focus on offering the same off-road capabilities as the ICE versions. Not an easy task considering the electrical characteristics that are assumed.
The Defender will not be the only Land Rover model to adapt to the new mobility. Thierry Bolloré, CEO of the house until recently, has already warned that the Discovery will be completely modified for its next generation. The house’s intermediate SUV has lost much of its sales volume in recent years and it is necessary to reorient the product both in design and approach. “We need to make a true family car for the most demanding families. Discovery has to play that role because otherwise, it could disappear from the market, at least in the luxury segments.”