The plug-in Land Rover Defender P400e model becomes the new range-topper, while four-cylinder diesels have been replaced by straight-six options
The Land Rover Defender range has received an update, and among the changes comes the introduction of a plug-in hybrid – the most fuel efficient yet most powerful model in the range.
Called P400e, the new plug-in powertrain is the same found in the Range Rover Sport PHEV: a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine is mated to an electric motor and a lithium-ion battery. The combined output of the two systems is 398bhp and 650Nm, enough to help the Defender crack the 0-62mph sprint in 5.6 seconds. Possibly more important for owners, however, is the fact that the plug-in model can tow a trailer up to 3,000kg in weight.
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The 19.2kWh battery gives the Defender a 27-mile electric only range, which translates to official consumption figures of 85.3mpg and 74g/km of CO2 emissions. Electric drive is sent to all four wheels, too, allowing for zero-emission off-road driving.
Through a 50kW rapid charger, the battery can reach 80 percent of its charge in 30 minutes, while the supplied Mode 3 cable enables the same capacity to be reached in two hours when plugged into a home 7.4kW wallbox.
The P400e is available in the longer 110 wheelbase Defender only, with buyers able to choose either five or six seat layouts. All plug-in models get 20-inch wheels and air suspension as standard.
Bolstering the engine line-up further comes a trio of new six-cylinder diesels. These take the place of the old four-cylinder units, but mild hybrid tech allows them to offer superior fuel efficiency. The diesels are badged D200, D250 and D300, with power ranging from 197bhp to 296bhp. 0-62mph times come in at 10.2, 8.3, and 6.7 seconds respectively, while the two lesser models return 32.2mpg. The diesels introduce Intelligent All-Wheel Drive to the Land Rover family: this allows up to 100 percent of engine torque to be diverted to either the front or rear axle if required.
The three diesels are available both in the existing 110 body style and the shorter 90 wheelbase, which has now joined the range. The 90 is offered with a choice of five or six seats – the sixth in the form of the central fold-down “jump seat” between the front driver and passenger chairs.
In line with the other changes, Land Rover has introduced a new mid-range X-Dynamic trim level, three new exterior paint finishes, and a fabric roof option for the 110 model.
The new 90 model starts from £43,625 – £1,690 cheaper than the 110. Commercial versions of both, named Hard Top, are also available. Hard Top variants get a load area partition, a fully flat load floor; prices start from £35,820 before VAT.
Click here to read our in-depth review of the new Land Rover Defender…
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