Report: Land Rover to cease production of Defender after 68-year run

Report: Land Rover to cease production of Defender after 68-year run image

Text: Marcus De Guzman / Photos: Land Rover | posted November 23, 2015 12:42

Land Rover Defender to bid farewell early next year

The SUV that has been revered for its rugged, no non-sense approach, will apparently be consigned to the history books soon after Bloomberg reported that Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) will end its production early next year.

With very little change in its design and features since its original conception in 1947, the boxy, aluminum-clad Defender with a roof rack and rear-mounted spare tire, is not able to keep up with the times.

It's not a matter of sales, but rather modern vehicle regulations and standards that ultimately spelled the end of the Defender. Aimed solely for farmers and hardcore off-roaders, Land Rover didn't plan on making it as a modern SUV. In today's market where a host of safety features and cabin amenities now come as standard on SUVs, the Defender still remained a simple off-road vehicle that could go anywhere but lacks essential features like touchscreen infotainment, mobile connectivity and airbags.

The Land Rover Defender taking on the mud

In addition, its construction and shape also meant that it is not safe for pedestrians; not to mention the emission standards which are twice as high than in Europe.

“It’s time to move to a new chapter.We want to move forward with a new car,” said Nick Rogers, Jaguar Land Rover’s head of engineering.

Before the Defender officially bids farewell, JLR estimates that they will be able to sell about 20,000 units of the SUV this year. Total production run of the Defender, on the other hand, amounted to 2 million units.

There is no word yet if the Defender will be replaced by a new model.

Source: Bloomberg