It's been some time since last we visited with British actor and electric car proponent Robert Llewellyn and his web-based video series, Fully Charged. The show, now sponsored by Ecotricity, has started rolling out its third season and now has available two episodes featuring a pair of truly unique – and diametrically opposed – vehicles.

The first installment starts with some interesting numbers involving the host's Nissan Leaf and its energy consumption over the past 36,000 miles, but soon moves on to the ultra-aero, ultra-expensive Volkswagen XL1. Now, if you've already seen the footage from our own XL1 first drive review, there's not a lot new here except, perhaps, more enthusiasm and a better listen of the two-cylinder diesel kicking in. Still, it's a great reminder of a truly unique vehicle and we enjoyed the segment.

The second episode features an electrified Land Rover Defender 110. This is a vehicle you'd more likely see on an African safari than at the local mall. It's not a home-built conversion either, but rather, something the company has put together "for the boffins to create the ideas and see if they work." Boasting a 50-mile range, it's certainly something we like to take on an off-road adventure.

Llewellyn is given the chance to do just that, and though the course is somewhat milder than what we might attempt, it does feature a stretch of river and some rough, rutted tracks. You can watch both episodes by scrolling below let us know which vehicle you'd prefer in the comments. This writer is going with the four-wheel-drive.





I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 16 Comments
      Marcopolo
      • 1 Day Ago
      I like Robert Llewellyn, but this segment disappointed me. I can sort of understand his adversity to conversions, even highly professional commercially produced conversions. How Robert Llewellyn could review the Land Rover Defender 'experimental' EV, manufactured by Indian owned, Jaguar Land Rover, without comparing it to the EV Range Rover, produced by Liberty Electric Cars, is mystifying, and a little dishonest. The obvious question that should have been asked, is why a manufacturer like Jaguar Land-Rover, can only produce a Land Rover Defender , with very modest EV capacity, while for more than 5 years, a small company like Liberty has been able to produce a far superior product, just up the road ? Liberty E-Range Range Rover, accelerates from zero to 60 in circa seven seconds, reaches a top speed of 100mph and has a range of 200+ miles on a single charge. Despite all the extra (and heavier) luxury items, including better heating and air-conditioning than the Tesla model S, the LERR still easily out performs the Land-rover Defender EV, in off road conditions, including towing capacity. Maybe, Robert didn't want to offend his JLR host's, but it seems a lost opportunity. I'm sure if Elon Musk had bought a batch of Lexus 4WD's, turned them into fantastic EV SUV's, and sold them to a loyal customer base for 5 years, Akio Toyoda would not be amused if the best his engineers could do was a Land-Cruiser EV with about 20% of the performance ! I'm quite sure questions would be asked !
        Grendal
        • 1 Day Ago
        @Marcopolo
        Has Robert ever driven one? You can't fault him if he just unaware of the LERR. If he is aware then he should do a segment on the LERR as opposed to outdoing the product he is showcasing at the time. Maybe Liberty should contact him to do a segment. That would be cool to see.
          Marcopolo
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Grendal
          @ Grendal, Robert Llewellyn is very well aware of the LERR. I was disappointed that he so quickly dismissed the LERR, along with his Guardian journalist colleagues, because of an irrational prejudice against "Jamie" Borwick, ( 5th Baron Borwick) and Tony St John, ( 22nd Baron St John of Bletso ), both of whom are UK EV pioneers, and connected with Liberty. He clashed with the American born British Barry Shrier, over the LERR not being an EV for the 'common man' , and being a conversion. I'm afraid class warfare, and dogmatic ideology still continues to dog Britain. For a motoring writer, specializing in British EV's, it seems odd that he ignores the only truly, (well until last year) UK EV ! Sad,....
          Grendal
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Grendal
          And the thought just occurred to me that the VW he is showing isn't exactly cheap. Quite pricey in fact.
          Grendal
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Grendal
          Aww. That is very sad to hear. I like what I see of Robert and it is always disappointing to find out someone you like has faults. It's true that just because the LERR is very expensive shouldn't detract from what it has achieved. There is really no difference between that and the detractors of Tesla (both roadster and Model S) due to its price.
      Grendal
      • 1 Day Ago
      Wing cameras are legal in the UK? Is there any other countries where it is legal?
      Alex82
      • 1 Day Ago
      This looks interesting I can't wait to see it in www.landrovernorthdade.com and have test drive with it.
      Grendal
      • 1 Day Ago
      Marco? Is that you?
      NestT
      • 1 Day Ago
      If Tesla charged ~$240,000 for a Model X you can be bloody sure it would be far superior to the Liberty E-Range Range Rover in every way including heating and cooling.
        Marcopolo
        • 1 Day Ago
        @NestT
        @ Next T. Why do you find it necessary be negative of every EV that isn't made by Tesla ? The LERR was released long before Tesla released the Model S. It's a vehicle built by a small firm, based on the most expensive luxury Range Rover. The UK government didn't lend Barry Shrier half a $ billion in taxpayer money, ( or even assist with tax credits) Nor was there a convenient, almost new, huge auto-factory, in the most EV sympathetic state, available. At the time of the LERR's release, there weren't even any public charging facilities in the UK, yet the LERR come with an inductive charging option. Barry Shrier created the LERR, with 200+ mile range, at a time when most major automakers considered such a vehicle, impossible ! Despite having to begin with a vehicle designed to be powered by either a 4.4 turbo diesel or a 5 litre V8, with all the existing accompanying weight and poor aerodynamics, the range and performance of the LERR is astonishing, and a real accomplishment for Barry Shrier and Ian Hobday' s team at Liberty Electric Cars. The LERR is not cheap, but simply converting British pounds to US dollars is not an accurate method of comparing prices. The model X is not designed to compete with the LERR, and will lack both the off road capacity, and the luxury appointments of the LERR. The model X is an American vehicle aimed at a totally different market. Not everything has to be made by Tesla, to be a successful EV !
          EVnerdGene
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Marcopolo
          heaven forbid Marco, I'll have to agree with Dan on this one. The Liberty is an anachronism. And, a motor in each wheel? They'll need some real engineering talent to make that work - ching-ching - I'm talking millions in development costs. And if I was that talented of an engineer (iyam), I probably wouldn't want to work for such a long-shot when I could be working for . . . Is the motor powering each wheel, or in each wheel? Four drives? ching-ching-ching-ching "off the shelf EV parts at prototype pricing" = good point Dan = the problem with most EV ventures. The only way to make money is either an astronomical price, or great volume. imho - Nissan Leaf is probably the only on-road electric vehicle being sold at a meager profit. Just passed 100,000 in sales (worldwide). butt Dan. Just count the dough on your fingers. No way Detroit Electric, or anyone else could build a car like they describe for much less than $100k (unless you build a coupla hundred thousand of them - in china). "billion dollar success"? Even at $25k, I'd say their market is pretty limited for a knock-off of a knock-off with no pedigree. Marco, remember I said Frisker could have been a success at $200,000 a pop? and last I heard their build-cost was $130k? and the Destino is $$$,$$$? (not saying they have a viable biz-model either - butt I would guess they'll soon be having supply/supplier problems) Modec successful? How many vehicles did they sell in their nine-year lifespan? and did they sell them for more than amortized sunk cost?
          Marcopolo
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Marcopolo
          @ danfred311 Let's see, aren't you the same individual who keeps predicting Tesla's imminent bankruptcy ? Liberty receives no money from the US government, it's built in the UK. Liberty's electric drive-train is completely proprietary and the result of years of R&D. (something you know nothing about, never having built anything yourself). Liberty is not only, not going bankrupt, but has rescued pioneering commercial EV maker Modec. Unlike you, for the last 6 years, Liberty has been selling all the cars they can build, with a backlog of orders ! If you know nothing, and do nothing, just STFU about people who do !
          danfred311
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Marcopolo
          Why are you cluelessly defending Liberty cars? from day one it was obviously a bankruptcy in progress. They continue to exist because they scam funding from the government for various ridiculous programs. They don't sell any 'cars'. You cannot make a moron's vehicle into an intelligent vehicle by putting in an electric drivetrain. It's just too costly to pay for such waste in batteries and the stupid price reflects that. Their thinking is so obvious. Electric is the future and people want 'luxury' cars so let's combine the two. Never mind that these 'luxury' vehicles are the antithesis to eco reason and not compatible with electric drive. And it's of course made much worse by the fact that these conversion businesses like AMP and Detroit Electric have no technical expertise nor wisdom to seek it so they just buy off the shelf EV parts at prototype pricing. Further exploding the price. That's why the tiny Detroit Electric costs 135k$ when it could easily cost 25k$. At 135k$ it's a given bankruptcy while at 25 it would be a billion dollar success.
      CoolWaters
      • 1 Day Ago
      Bloody Brilliant
      Marcopolo
      • 1 Day Ago
      @ Next T. Why do you feel it's necessary to be negative about any EV, not made by Tesla ? The LERR was released years before Tesla released the Model S. Barry Shrier created the LERR, with 200+ mile range, at a time when most major automakers considered such a vehicle, impossible ! It's a vehicle built by a small firm, based on the most expensive luxury Range Rover. The UK government didn't lend Barry Shrier half a $ billion in taxpayer money, ( or even assist with tax credits) Nor was there a almost new, huge auto-factory, in the most EV sympathetic US state, conveniently available for a give away price. When the LERR was released, the UK still had no public charging sites, yet the LERR was fitted with fast charging, an inductive charging option, and other advanced technology. The LERR is an astonishing achievement in technology for it's founder Barry Shrier, CEO Ian Hobday, and the rest of the Liberty Team. The LERR is a most unlikely vehicle for an EV conversion. Range Rovers are not designed with weight or aerodynamics's as important considerations. These vehicles are deliberately built for strength. The extra weight doesn't matter , since the vehicles are fitted with 5 litre V8 gasoline or 4.4 litre turbo-diesel engines. They're loaded with heavy off-road suspensions, chassis, etc,luxury interior fittings. air-conditioning and heating, and a full suite of electrics accessories. Yet despite all these disadvantages, the LERR still manages a "real world" 200+ mile range, and the same off-road, and towing capacity, as it's ICE sibling. It's true the LERR is not cheap, but simply converting British pounds to US dollars is not an accurate method of comparing prices. The model X is not designed to compete with the LERR. The model X is an American vehicle aimed at a totally different market. ( Not everything has to be made by Tesla, to be a successful EV ! )
    • Load More Comments