There seem to be plenty of reports swirling in regards to Land Rover lately. According to Autocar, not only is the British automaker going back to the drawing board for the design of its next-generation Defender, but the outlet is also saying that the Freelander name could be dropped.
We were all surprised when we arrived in Frankfurt a couple of months ago to find Land Rover there with not one, but two distinct versions of the DC100 concept: one hardtop and one open-air model. But when the LA Auto Show opens later this month, Land Rover is set to unveil a third version.
With the long-serving Defender not... well, long for this world, Land Rover is gearing up for its eventual replacement – targeted to launch in 2015 – and we just got our first glimpse of it on the show floor here in Frankfurt. Or glimpses, we should say, as JLR surprised us with the debut not only of the concept we were expecting, but a pair of them.
The new Land Rover Defender cometh in 2015, so sayeth – officially – Land Rover. When it released information and photos on the DC100 concept not long ago, the accompanying press release stated "Land Rover confirms its intention to launch a new Defender in 2015." Bringing a spot of sun to Defender lovers everywhere, in two weeks the firm has snipped three years off that delivery time.
Yesterday, Land Rover released the first image and details (however few) of the new DC100 concept it's bringing to Frankfurt, and it carries with it the promise of the next-generation Defender – an off-roader so accomplished and so ubiquitous that calling it the Sir Edmund Hillary (or Tenzing Norgay) of automobiles wouldn't even be doing it justice.
Few vehicles have been on (or off) the road as long as the Land Rover Defender. It's one of those few true icons of the automobile, and replacing it will be no easy task. But that's precisely what Land Rover is gearing up to do.