The pinnacle of off-roading, the overlanding event before the word overlanding even existed, a grueling adventure that would test both human and machine – the Camel Trophy.
The event began in 1980 and ended in 2000. Participating teams raced modified Land Rover Defenders, Discoveries, Range Rovers, and even Freelanders provided by Land Rover themselves. The vehicles and drivers had to cross some of the harshest environments in the world.
It was an astonishing event, and when completed, an unforgettable accomplishment. Sadly, manufacturers have gone a bit soft these days and such events no longer exist.
People in Land Rover’s marketing department know what they are doing though; so, guess what – a showroom floor V8 Camel Trophy Defender is now available for purchase. Don’t get too excited however, they are not cheap, and they’ll only make 25 of them.
Let’s start from the price, which if not prepared for, can be eye-watering – $270.000 of your hard-earned money. Now, that’s steep for a posh tractor. However, this one has a 5.0L V8 producing 399 horsepower paired to an 8 speed ZF transmission.
It sits on body-colored 16-inch steel wheels which are great for off road use. But wait, how do big enough brakes to stop a truck with 399HP and the handling abilities of a wheelbarrow fit in 16-inch wheels? They probably don’t, but you won’t speed in a Defender, it’s not humanly possible. Even with 399HP, you’ll be terrified of doing anything over 70mph.
All trucks will be painted in a retro shade of Eastnor Yellow harkening back to the original camel trophy vehicles. Black wheel arches, hood, and trunk provide the contrast needed to make the Defender look stunning. The option of personalized competition graphics is also available.
It wouldn’t be a proper nod to the original truck without the necessary off-roading accessories. A winch, roof rack, multi-point expedition cage, underbody protection, and spotlights come pre-installed from Land Rover.
Inside you will find black leather with contrasting yellow stitching, some stunning Recaro sports seats, and a Land Rover classic infotainment system with device connectivity and sat-nav.
All buyers will be invited to a three-day adventure at Eastnor Castle. During the expedition, participants will have to overcome a series of challenges “inspired by famous global adventures and competitions spanning more than seven decades of Land Rover production.”
Experienced off-roaders will be on-site to guide the owners through the course. The winner will receive a grand prize which will be unveiled later this year.
An old-school Defender with a thumping V8 in 2021 sounds great and deep inside I want it. And I am sure you do too. The price is a bit steep – but hey, this is a marketing exercise from Land Rover…what do you expect?
Seeing this one makes me think what the new Defender could have been, but I won’t get into that again.
What do you think about the camel trophy defender? Would you buy one? Why am I even asking? They are sold out. Bummer, don’t really know what to do with my $270.000 now!