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Contrary to previous reports, it has emerged that the next-generation Land Rover Defender will be launched in 2018 rather than 2016 as originally anticipated.

The new Land Rover Defender is currently codenamed the L663 and it will be the most heavily updated and revised Defender launched since the car hit the market in 1948. With this in mind, Automobile Magazine reports that the new Defender will differ from the current car in that it will appeal to a broader audience rather than just off-road enthusiasts.

All told, it is reported that at least five different body styles of the Land Rover Defender will be launched. They will apparently include a four-door long-wheelbase car with a metal roof, a four-door LWB pickup, two-door SWB with a metal top, two-door SWB with a soft top and a two-door SWB pickup. Elsewhere, five engine options from Jaguar Land Rover’s Ingenium series of engines are expected.

Two of those will be 2.0-litre diesel four-cylinders delivering 150 hp and 180 hp respectively as well as two 2.0-litre petrol four-cylinders with 180 and 240 hp. Additionally, a 3.0-litre petrol V6 is expected to top out the range and replace the existing V8 while delivering 300 hp. Two transmissions will then be offered; a six-speed manual and a nine-speed automatic both of which will be available alongside a low-range transfer case complete with two locking differentials.

Elsewhere, Automobile Magazine reports that the new Defender will feature improvements in its ergonomics, infotainment systems, improved ride and handling, safety, comfort, quality and efficiency.

[Via Automobile Magazine]

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