Testing of the new Land Rover Defender is nearly complete.
With only one month to go until the world debut of the all-new Defender, Land Rover is applying the finishing touches to the rugged off-roader. As a successor to one of the most iconic SUVs ever built, it’s fair to say the new Defender has a lot to live up to, which is why Land Rover is subjecting prototypes to severe punishment to ensure it lives up to expectations and cope with extreme terrain. After undergoing extensive tests in locations around the world ranging from the Nurburgring to Kenya, Land Rover has brought the Defender to Dubai.
For the next step of the Defender’s development, Land Rover visited off-roading experts at the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies global fleet base in Dubai. Engineers were able to demonstrate the new Defender’s capability to their IFRC counterparts both on and off-road before IFRC fleet experts got behind the wheel to test the off-roader on the region’s demanding sand dunes, tackling steep ascents, unforgiving side slopes, and blind crests.
The next destination was the twisting hairpins of the renowned Jebel Jais highway, which winds its way up the tallest mountain in the United Arab Emirates, to test the Defender’s comfort and agile handling on tarmac.
"Jaguar Land Rover is proud to support the work of the IFRC. Since 1954 our vehicles have enabled access to remote and vulnerable communities, helping them become more resilient, and we hope the new Defender will maintain this heritage,” said Nick Rogers, Jaguar Land Rover Executive Director Product Engineering.
"The dunes of Dubai are the perfect place to confirm that this is the most capable Land Rover ever made. It sits on tires with an overall diameter of up to 815mm, resulting in a very large contact patch. Coupled with our bespoke traction control system, which monitors and adjusts for a large variety of terrains, this makes the new Defender fantastic on sand and incredibly smooth on road as well.”
According to Land Rover, prototype Defender models have covered more than 1.2 million kilometres (around 745,000 miles) of testing, including a run up the famous Goodwood Festival of Speed hill climb. The new Land Rover Defender will debut at the 2019 Frankfurt Auto Show in September.