Why the Land Rover Defender is so popular in the UK?

The Land Rover Defender is synonymous to the countryside and is the most popular choice for off roading. The Queen has one, Sir Winston Churchill had one and Sir David Attenborough uses one for his adventures. It’s the ultimate iconic British vehicle.

Photograph shared from coventrytelegraph.net

Lets start with its name; Land Rover was designed to rove the land, regardless of weather and conditions. And I’m sure everyone would agree, to this day, the Land Rover Defender does just that. Originally built in 1948, made of aluminium and inspired by the World War 2 Jeep, it was an instant hit, even 70 years later the Defender really has defended its classic status.

Up until 1990, the descendants of the original Land Rover were simply referred to by their series number and the length of their wheelbase in inches. But in 1989, the Discovery was debuted with a little confusion as it was badged as a Land Rover. So to end the confusion, in 1990, the original Land Rover stopped applying the “series” badge and went by its new name of “Defender” and the vehicle has kept the name ever since.

photograph from caranddriver.com

The 1990 Defender had a new 200Tdi engine shared with the Discovery but it was changed to the 300Tdi engine and the L380 manual gearbox alongside the Discovery and the original Range Rover in 1994. That year also saw the end of V8 Defender production for the UK (although the 4.0 V8 engine was fitted to the ‘50’ special edition vehicle, created to mark Land Rover’s 50th birthday in 1998).

In 2001 the Defender was upgraded and fitted with modern creature comforts such as electric windows, central locking and heated seats for the first time. But there was no question of the Defender losing its off roading abilities. In 1996, the Ministry of Defence placed an order for almost 8,000 military specification Defender XDs. (XD standing for ‘extra duty’), but the model is simply referred to by its codename of ‘Wolf’.

The ‘Wolf’ first entered service in 1997 and has seen action around the world and in active duty. The Defender proved its toughness in peacetime too as one of the pillars of both the Camel Trophy and the G4 Challenge, which Land Rover created in 2003.

There have been many weird and wonderful Defenders over the years, the SAS painted one pink and called it the Pink Panther, Utility companies have put cherry pickers on the back, the fire service has specially converted fire tender Defenders of course not forgetting the lists of movies that have featured the Land Rover Defender – the list goes on.

Now we have the Land Rover Defender 2020. Just when the modern era thought the Defender had retired, Land Rover decided it was time to bring it back into the spotlight. The latest model represents 70 years of innovation and improvement, honouring the history of the vehicle for rugged solidity while thoroughly remaining a Defender for the modern day.

So, why is the Defender so popular? For one main reason, it is extremely functional and will always be the main choice for off-roading in the UK.

If you are looking for a committed and experienced team of Land Rover trained technicians to work on your Land Rover Defender, who use the latest manufacturers technology and understand how important your vehicle is to you – then you have come to the right place.

Based in West Kent, we’ve been servicing and repairing land Rovers for over 30 years.

We take pride in giving a truly independent, unbiased opinion to all our customers. There’s no fuss – just high quality, competitive, friendly service. We endeavour to complete the work as quickly as possible and our fleet of courtesy cars are at your disposal, if required.

So why not drop in and experience our high quality service today?