Jaguar Land Rover is re-engineering up to 150 Defenders with V8 engines, to celebrate the model’s 70th birthday. The 5.0-litre V8 Defender will be the most powerful and fastest yet made, with the 90in wheelbase model hitting 60mph from rest in 5.6sec. The upgraded Defender – tagged 'Defender Works V8' – will produce 404hp and 515Nm of torque, while the standard Defender made just 122hp and 360Nm of torque.
The British carmaker said it pays homage to early high-powered engines such as the Series III Stage V8 and the 50th Anniversary Edition. The Defender Works V8 is the first official V8 Defender to be launched since 1998. The re-engineered Defenders use an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission with sport mode, along with uprated brakes, a handling kit consisting of springs, dampers and anti-roll bars, and exclusive 18-inch alloys with 265/65 tyres.
Both 90 and 110 wheelbase Defender Works V8 models will be available, with prices starting from approximately Rs 1.4 crore. JLTR has said other high-performance upgrades inspired by the Defender Works V8 will be offered this year, including power upgrades for the TDCi diesel engine, fast-road suspension and braking kits.
Eight colours will be offered for the Defender Works V8 with contrasting black wheel arches, grille and roof. Machined aluminium door handles, fuel filler cap and bonnet lettering will also be featured. The interior will have a leather dashboard, door panels, headlining and Recaro sports seats; as well as the use the Land Rover Classic heritage arm’s infotainment system.
“The idea of a V8 Defender was discussed in 2014, when we were still building the Defender," said Jaguar Land Rover Classic director, Tim Hannig. "We knew there was demand for a powerful and fast Defender.”
The Defender Works V8 begins a year of 70th anniversary celebrations for the model, culminating later this year with the unveiling of an all-new Defender.
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