Called the Flying Huntsman, Kahn Design's latest take on the Defender stretches the wheelbase to slot in a GM crate engine. To make the 6.2-liter LS3 V8 with its 400+ horsepower and six-speed automatic transmission fit, Kahn stretched the wheelbase from 90 inches to 105, giving it a bigger engine bay ahead of the windscreen. Along with the engine swap and wheelbase stretch, Kahn has upgraded the brakes, suspension and body kit to paint this as the British counterpart to the Icon Bronco.
It'll be revealed in full at the Geneva Motor Show in a couple of months, where its price tag – targeted for the £125,000 range – will also be confirmed. But the 105 Longnose is just the first in a series of Flying Huntsman models Kahn has in the works. Also in store will be a four-door version with an even longer wheelbase (think 125), a Mercedes-rivaling 6x6, armored versions with various levels of ballistic protection and additional engine options as well.
Kahn Design has announced the release of a new coach built Land Rover Defender named the Flying Huntsman 105 Longnose.
The new Defender has an extra 400mm of bodywork inserted into the elongated nose cone, just ahead of the windscreen, hence the 105 designation, referring to the longer wheelbase.
The 6.2-litre GM LS3 V8 engine drives a six-speed automatic gearbox operated by push-button controls. An upgraded braking and suspension system completes the engineering overhaul.
With an estimated 400-450 bhp the explosive performance of the 105 Longnose Defender is a far cry from the stolid pulling power of the original. Built to tame even the hardiest terrain, this modern British icon is equally comfortable outrunning any road going 4x4.
The exterior of the vehicle is augmented with a square sectioned wide arch body kit, fitted precisely to the vehicle with Kahn Design's usual exceptional standards of craftsmanship.
True to the Defender's British heritage, the 105 Longnose will be produced entirely in the UK. Pricing has yet to be set, but is expected to be in the region of £125,000 plus VAT. The 105 Longnose will be formally unveiled at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show.
"The Defender is probably the most iconic and well-loved British vehicle in existence - I believe even more so than the Mini." commented Afzal Kahn, CEO and creative director of the Kahn Group.
"The fact that Land Rover are retiring it is an absolute tragedy - it's one of my top three all time favourite vehicles."
"With the 105 Longnose I set out to create something fashionable, iconic and revolutionary which carries on the spirit of the Defender. These days it's not what you wear, it's what you drive. It's a truly British icon in the same way the Wrangler is to the US, the G-Class to Germany or the Land Cruiser L70 to Japan. It's instantly recognisable - if you saw one on the Moon, you'd know it was a Defender.
The redesigned silhouette, coupled with Kahn Design's renowned styling has produced a one of a kind vehicle which is as iconic as the original, and makes a definite and lasting statement.
The Flying Huntsman 105 Longnose is the superlative expression of the Land Rover Defender - tougher, faster and more recognisable than any of its contemporaries, the culmination of over 25 years of experience in the automotive industry.
The 105 Longnose is the first in an upcoming line of related retro classic models, each of which will be based on the Land Rover Defender. The Flying Huntsman marque signifies extreme power coupled with all terrain performance - a vehicle which can take you literally anywhere you need to go at speed and in safety.
"We are in talks with a number of engine manufacturers to make a total of four variants which consist of 3.0 and 6.2 petrol models and 3.2 and 4.6 Diesel models," said Afzal Kahn.
"We are keeping the project as British as possible by coach building the vehicle in the UK. We will source new vehicles which will undergo a total re-build with a number of elements and mechanical features refined and upgraded in order to withstand the speed and finesse associated with the Huntsman."
Future models which will wear the Flying Huntsman badge include a 4 door variant with a correspondingly longer wheelbase, and a 6x6 model.
Extreme conversions will be available, including both B4 and B6 armoured variants with a B7 variant rumoured to be in the pipeline, providing maximum security for the driver and passengers.
Several alternate engine options will also be released, which are yet to be confirmed but will likely increase the power output even further.
Initial images of the alternate models will be released in the coming weeks.