Currently reading: Land Rover Defender pick-up to rival Mercedes X-Class
Following the Defender's reveal later this year, a family of models is expected, including a pick-up variant
Rachel Burgess
2 mins read
20 April 2018

Land Rover will launch a pick-up truck by 2020 as part of an extended family of Defender vehicles, which has long been rumoured in order to warrant Land Rover’s future commitment to its most famous model.

The standard Defender will have its grand unveiling this year as part of the marque’s 70th anniversary celebrations, but more variants are already in the pipeline.

A Defender pick-up will not only appeal to the huge market for utilitarian vehicles in the US but also in Europe, where pick-up sales are growing. Mercedes’ recent arrival with the X-Class (a sibling to the Nissan Navara), demonstrates car makers’ belief of the worthiness of an offering in this segment.

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The Defender pick-up will also appeal in developing parts of the world, including South America and Africa. Although old Defenders are still used in these places, models such as the Toyota Land Cruiser and Hilux pick-up are broadly perceived as more reliable and durable options, so Land Rover will need to prove the new Defender’s worth against these rivals.

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Given the markets where the vehicle is likely to be most popular – those that are not geared up for electric or hybrid powertrains – the engine line-up will focus on petrol and diesel 2.0-litre units from JLR’s Ingenium range.

The pick-up will be based around the longer-wheelbase Defender. It is most likely to be offered as a single-cab variant, offering a similar payload to a Navara, because it would be easier to adapt the Defender’s platform to a single-cab format than a double-cab.

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To cater for all its markets, the pick-up will be offered in a range of specifications, from a very spartan version to something far more luxurious to rival the likes of the X-Class.

More premium versions could be made in the firm’s new Slovakia plant, where the main Defender models are expected to be built. More rudimentary versions could be made further afield. A rumoured new factory in Mexico is one potential build location for models that are destined for the Americas.

Land Rover declined to comment on this story. 

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20 April 2018
looks the nuts mate!!!!!

20 April 2018

A range of Pickups is a must for Land Rover. The US loves them and they are becoming increasingly popular here. Don’t think about it build it. This could be Land Rover most successful model ever as US buyers will lap it up.

20 April 2018

I'm afraid LR has left it too late.  Jeep have a Wrangler pick up readied for 2019, that has been so demanded after Mopar offered a kit on the old Wrangler.  That Jeep pick-up is going to be hugely successful...and out before LR even has the Defender problems ironed out!

20 April 2018

This has to be a joke right?

20 April 2018
xxxx wrote:

This has to be a joke right?

date already passed mate! cant be. looks the business.

20 April 2018

Madness! It's the only variant that MB offers. It's essential in the leasure market too which is where the money is.

20 April 2018

Agreed, double cab pickups have a much wider potential market than single cab ones.

The old Defender was available in this format, surely the new one would be too?

13 July 2018

In the USA and Australia single cabs sell only to 'tradies' - generally speaking. I think almost 10,000 pickups/utes were sold in June alone here in Australia and the HiLux by Toyota is regularly the best selling 'car' in Australia. If Land Rover made a single cab ute only, it would be guaranteed of failing in two of the biggest markets in the world. So pretty much head up bum again!

20 April 2018

Anyone heard of the Honda Ridgeline? It's a niche, irrelevancy of a pickup that, like the new Defender, uses a monocoque. It's about to be joined in that queue of irrelevancy by this.

20 April 2018

How many sales does the Ridgeline get? Enough to justify a new generation model certainly.

This new Defender should be based on a proper chassis and will be way too expensive for emerging markets. But JLR are clearly looking at a niche, premium proposition - only a tiny % of the US truck market I guess.


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