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Sunday, June 16, 2024

Land Rover is Adding a V8 to the Defender Lineup for 2022

Let’s be honest here, the world of 4x4s has gone a bit mad. Up until 20 years ago, an off-roader would struggle to overtake a pedestrian, and now? 

Well, there’s a 700HP Dodge pickup, a 450HP Ford pickup, a 470 HP Jeep Wrangler, and Land Rover has just released a 518HP Defender.

The pessimists of this world will say that we are in a downwards spiral to misery and anger. Judging by the horsepower figures of modern trucks I think I’ll be more than happy in today’s world. I mean yes there are some virus issues, but nothing 518HP can’t blow away. 

Remember the days when you had to get in your Defender 20 minutes early to get where you were going on time? And if you could squat any less than 225lbs your legs weren’t strong enough to push that insanely heavy clutch pedal? 

Well, with the new generation they are long gone – and with Land Rover’s new release, they seem even further away!

I mean who didn’t expect to see the supercharged V8 from the Range Rover Autobiography and the Jaguar F-type R in the Defender? It would have been morally wrong if it didn’t happen.

Thankfully, engineers still have a sense of humor.

Land Rover Defender Engine
Jaguar Land Rover

Anyhow, what does the 2022 V8 Land Rover Defender have to offer? Horsepower as mentioned is at 518 and torque at 461 pound-feet.

Both the Defender 90 and the 110 models will get the blown V8. 

I have a strange feeling that the little 90 with the V8 will be a sought-after classic in the future. So, if you keep it long enough you might be making some money. 

Behind the V8 behemoth, you will find an 8-speed automatic transmission powering all four wheels. 

The following words 0-60 and Defender can’t be included in the same sentence but as I’ve said – the world’s gone mad so here it goes. The 90 will hit 60 in just 4.9 seconds and will carry on to a top speed of 149MPH. 

I am starting to think that Land Rover engineers might have confused the words sports car and off-roader here. 

The “humble” four-cylinder and six-cylinder engines are still available; therefore, if Pikes Peak is not on the list of things you want to do in your Defender, one of the former two might be the best choice.  

2022 Land Rover Defender driving on a wet and snowy mountain road
Jaguar Land Rover

The obvious V8 rumble from the quad exhausts hanging out the rear is a tale-tale sign of what’s under the hood. In case that isn’t enough though, Land Rover has added badges on the front fender and tailgate to make sure your polar bear-killing V8 won’t go unnoticed. 

Defender Tail Pipes
Jaguar Land Rover

The standard size wheels are 22s and inside them, you will find blue brake calipers and 15-inch rotors. The option for all-terrain tires on 20-inch wheels is available as well.

The blue calipers and 22s tell me that Land Rover is definitely not aiming at the hard-core off roader with this one. You don’t want to get those blue calipers repainted in manure brown after all.

 Wheel and tire
Jaguar Land Rover

The only accessory packs available with the V8 are the Urban and Country. The overlanding-focused Adventure and Explorer packs which include accessories like a snorkel, cargo box, and roof rack are not available. 

Who would take a 5-liter V8 on 22-inch wheels overlanding though? You’ll rip through more tires than Mad Mike and burn more fuel than an F16.

New Land Rover V8 Defender driving in the middle of a mountain stream surrounded by trees
Jaguar Land Rover

No issues there then. 

Inside the V8’s interior, you will find black leather seats, an Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel, and chrome paddle shifters. 

For 2022 Land Rover has added the option of a larger 11.4-inch touch screen – wireless charging is now available on all models. 

Interior dashboard with black leather seats and and large touch screen
Jaguar Land Rover

Now as I am sure you’ve realized, this is not going to roam the most remote parts of our planet any time soon. It was never meant to, not even the cheaper models (this is why). 

The Defender is an insane machine though, no other 4×4 even comes close to the way it connects both its off road and on-road abilities. 

Granted, few will ever reach the limits of this vehicle. It’s like having a watch that’s waterproof to 200m, you’ll never go that deep. It’s just nice to know it will do it. 

The name is what bugs me though – The Defender. Call me closed-minded but I don’t think it deserves this name – it’s too flashy. The Discovery sounds more like it. 

People seem to dig it so far though; so, I might be wrong.

What do you guys think about the 2022 Land Rover V8 “Discovery”?

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