Good news, Defender fans: Word has it Land Rover will bring the rugged SUV to the U.S. market once the next-generation bows. According to TheCarConnection.com, Jaguar Land Rover North America CEO Andy Goss confirmed the next Defender will be a global product, and that it will be specifically engineered to meet U.S. crash safety and emissions standards. The news came during the 2012 Paris Motor Show, where JLR officials also made it clear the brand intends to bolster its Land Rover offerings in the North American market. As of right now, the vast majority of Land Rover Sales in the States can be attributed to the high-end Range Rover line.
That mix may change somewhat as Land Rover refreshes some models and replaces others. Expect to see both the LR4 and the Defender receive serious overhauls in the near future.
Even so, it will be some time before he next-generation Defender bows, and whether or not it looks anything like the DC100 concept above remains to be seen. From what we've heard, the new bruiser won't bow until 2017 at the earliest. In the interim, U.S. buyers will just have to continue to look wistfully across the pond.
UPDATE: Since this report went live, Land Rover has commented to us that its "intention is for the next generation Defender to be engineered in a way that would allow it to come to the U.S.," but that there are still many obstacles to face before that happens and its reintroduction to this market confirmed.