back to article Iconic Land Rover Defender may make a comeback by 2019

Jaguar Land Rover is to resurrect the venerable old Defender – and it may be built abroad, according to media reports. The Defender design was discontinued in 2016 thanks to EU regulations on vehicle emissions. Unlike Volkswagen, JLR decided to halt production rather than engage in software trickery to defeat emissions testing …

  1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    thanks to EU regulations

    Wasn't there a recent event of some relevance to this?

    I welcome our new coal powered British Land Rovers

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Why?

      Everyone knows, if you ever want to go into the outback, take a Land Rover. But if you want to come back again, take a Land Cruiser.

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Why?

        Everyone knows, if you ever want to go into the outback, take a Land Rover. But if you want to come back again, take a Land Cruiser.

        Well you better hope your Land Cruiser brings you back, because you're not going to fix it in the bush with a basic toolkit like you can with a 1940s design.

        1. Doc Ock

          Re: Why?

          >Well you better hope your Land Cruiser brings you back, because you're not going to fix it in the bush with a basic toolkit like you can with a 1940s design.

          That has a major downside, Defenders are child's play to steal. My mate chalky had his stolen off the drive while he went to the pub four doors down, he was only in the pub for an hour.

          1. cantankerous swineherd

            Re: Why?

            they strip the doors and bonnet in your drive in darkest S. Yorks.

            1. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

              Re: Why?

              indeed, I recall watching some Joint Forces Competition when I was a kid, where one event was two teams disassembling a Landy, running it to the other end of the arena (over a wall, iirc), and re-assembling it. Took minutes.

        2. Alan Edwards

          Re: Why?

          To be fair, that "Land Cruiser" would be an FJ-40, not the land yacht we have today.

          You can still do things with a current Land Cruiser that would make an X5 stop and think though.

      2. ttlarsen

        Re: Why?

        .. and everybody in East Africa knows that you can't fix the LC's but you can get a tow back behind a 50 year old 109 LR - the LCs has to go back.

    2. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: thanks to EU regulations

      I do not think it is the emission regs that killed it (though they played a role too).

      It is the pedestrian crash safety regs which killed it. They were delayed for light commercials because of British lobbying (with the Landy in mind), but finally came into force.

      There is absolutely no way in hell or otherwise to adapt the old design to comply with those. If you whack a pedestrian with that square box front, that pedestrian is pretty much straight to the cemetery.

      So regardless where it is made, if it is to be ever sold in Europe, it will not have the classic square front any more.

      1. VinceH Silver badge

        Re: thanks to EU regulations

        "So regardless where it is made, if it is to be ever sold in Europe, it will not have the classic square front any more."

        So designing one with spikes on the front is off the cards, then?

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: thanks to EU regulations

          Depending on how badly the test is designed/requriement is worded.

          Spikes means the pedestrian would accelerate to the vehicle speed and stay there - rather than be accelerated and then bounced off so feeling double the overall force.

          If you ignored the whole pierced by a spike bit - you could reduce the amount of impact felt by a pedestrian by fitting spikes

      2. montyburns56

        Re: thanks to EU regulations

        Are there not some rubber bumpers left over from the Triumph production line that they could use?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: thanks to EU regulations

          American regs. You know, nanny state.

      3. Lars Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: thanks to EU regulations

        Around 1950 Britain was the number two in car manufacturing in the world, not because Britain as a country was anything special but because the rest of Europe was in no shape after the war. And then it all disappeared in no time, nothing left. And still, amazing idiots, people so damned stuck up with their head in their own national English arsehole that they just cannot get it and that it has absolutely nothing to do with anything else like the EU but their own disability to produce, to compete.

        Damn you dear Brits, what is it with you, why is it so difficult for, apparently a majority of you, to think rationally about what you are good at, and what you are rather rubbish at.

        See, even old Napoleon knew you, with appreciation, for what you were, a bunch of shopkeepers, (a educated and clever guy, that Napoleon who unfortunately was, eventually, at old age, hit with a "Napoleon complex" underestimating his neighbours in the best English tradition ).

        What the fuck, there you go so determined to fuck up that one and only thing you are/were good at, trade then, and only digits to day.

        Do I live in a country with as a stupid and totally unaware of the reality bunch of countrymen as you do. Wow, time to think indeed.

        PS. last year you produced 1.7m cars, best since 1999. 80% for export, about 60% to the EU and the parts needed for that production with 30% from the EU.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Happy

          Re: thanks to EU regulations

          @Lars...

          You actually make a reasonable point, but could be worse, we could believe US cars are any good. Luckily we do still have a little common sense.

        2. MyffyW Silver badge

          Re: thanks to EU regulations

          @Lars reasonable point hun, although I'd say we're also pretty good on design too. What we were historically shit at was producing cars that didn't become rot boxes the moment you drove them off the forecourt.

          And as for the EU and that referendum, probably best letting it lie.

          1. Dave 15

            Re: thanks to EU regulations

            ho hum... typical Brit

            Europe produced rot boxes in the '70s with second rate steel and poor box section design without proper internal protection. This included Renault, Citroen, BMW, Mercedes and of course the infamous Alfa and Fiat. Even if you go further afield and look at 70s Jap cars, American cars and Russian they also had much the same afflictions. That is why 70s cars of any make are actually pretty hard to find.

            Don't think it was just the Morris Marina that rusted... I know mine did ... but all makes also rusted (my dads Citroen was amazing, basically only the roof was present in its original form the entire rest of the car was fibreglass).

            But all was not bad, I, like most of my friends, learnt to weld.

            Now British built cars are fantastic, many far better than the foreign equivalents. Its a pity too few people in the UK realise the poor quality of the 'German brands' compared to the cars made here.

      4. not.known@this.address Bronze badge

        Re: thanks to EU regulations

        re "If you whack a pedestrian with that square box front, that pedestrian is pretty much straight to the cemetery."

        Actually, there is evidence that suggests getting hit by a flat surface like the front of a Land Rover is considerably better(*) for you than the much smaller area of a 'pointy'-fronted vehicle; for any given impact velocity, the force per unit area imparted by the Landy is way lower than the same energy going into the much smaller area hit by a 2" bumper. And with the greater surface area of the Landy, you are more likely to be pushed 'forwards'/away than the smaller bumper where you will fold around the impact point instead.

        (*)'better' being a relative term - but then bruised ribs, a broken arm and a case of gravel rash are normally more survivable than having some twat park his souped-up Ford Fiesta on top of you because he "didn't see the pedestrian crossing"...

        1. john.w

          Re: thanks to EU regulations

          Rather late but recent support for your argument in a video demonstrating the great British ideal of keeping calm and carrying. Guy hit by bus, thrown 45 feet then immediately getting up and walking into the pub.

          http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/man-hit-bus-cctv-video-reading-walk-pub-purple-turtle-simon-smith-footage-a7810616.html

      5. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: thanks to EU regulations

        There is absolutely no way in hell or otherwise to adapt the old design to comply with those. If you whack a pedestrian with that square box front, that pedestrian is pretty much straight to the cemetery.

        At least with my wife's Morris Minor the pedestrian has a more rounded front end to fly over.. and hit the nicely upright (heated[1]) screen. And if it's another car she hits? Her comment was "the other car is my crumple zone"..

        [1] Yes - she has a heated front and rear screen - proper ones with embedded wires. She also has disc brakes (I insisted after discovering she was driving with intermittent brake failure), replacement seats, safety belts and a proper alternator instead of the old dynamo. And she's on negative-earth instead of the old +ve earth. Car has only done 110K miles since 1966 - we have all the MOT certificates back to the middle 1970's. Still the same engine block.

  2. Dave 15

    Needling me?

    Oil stained, superior rivals...

    Just trying to get me angry?

    What the hell is wrong with once in a while admitting that a British product was and is actually the best there is?

    Rock solid, cheap, reliable, flexible, customisable, iconic and wonderful.

    As for the British armed forces buying something else, well, come the next war and they can't get spares, replacements, repairs etc. and have to throw in the towel in the first few days they might realise the folly of using Chinese uniforms, Belgium guns, American airplanes, Japanese 4x4s, German or French lorries, Spanish tanks, Norwegian engines et al.

    Once upon a time we had industry, we could defend ourselves, we could protect the Falklands, Gibraltar, put a stop to slave trading et al, now all we can do is prop up other peoples economies while helping our own slide to oblivion.

    1. fnusnu

      Re: Needling me?

      "Once upon a time we had industry, we could defend ourselves, we could protect the Falklands"

      With a Belgian rifle, French anti tank missiles, US satellite imagery...

      1. Dave 15

        Re: Needling me?

        We still used British tanks, British planes and British ships, and indeed some of the arms were also British.

        The Argies used French missiles to sink our ships, but ran out. Had they been able to make their own we would have lost. The same is true of us, if we no longer make our tanks, our ships, our planes we will lose the next conflict.

        1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

          Re: Needling me?

          The same is true of us, if we no longer make our tanks, our ships, our planes we will lose the next conflict.

          Sorry but that's too simplistic a view. Two other factors also make up a large portion of that equation and they are:

          1. Who the other player(s) in the conflict are. For instance US invading Grenada

          2. Does the country really want to do what it takes to win? See the Vietnam Wars, either US or French.

          Argentina's problem was it really didn't have many friends at the time with both the US and France refusing to sell them the arms and parts they needed. In short, it was stupid and beyond arrogant of the Proceso junta to not consider the lay of global alliances and they never really had much of a chance as while they may have been the baddest bull in their little rodeo, they weren't at all prepared for the rest of the world.

          Country's don't need to make all their own stuff but they do need to know who their friends are. Consider that if the alliances in '82 had been reversed it would likely have been a very different outcome.

        2. Grunt #1

          Re: Needling me?

          We also used British soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen and we still make those.

      2. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

        Re: Needling me?

        Belgian _designed_ rifle,... the SLR was manufactured in the UK. Oh, and it was manufactured using imperial measurements, not metric, like the original FN FAL.

        Adoption of the SLR was a farce, we had superior home developed bullpups, which were the precursor to the SA-80.

    2. wolfetone Silver badge

      Re: Needling me?

      "What the hell is wrong with once in a while admitting that a British product was and is actually the best there is?"

      How many Defenders do you see in the outback of Australia, where you need dependable, rugged transport? Compare that number to the number of Nissan Patrol's and Toyota Land Cruisers you see out there.

      Then think about what you said.

      1. Dave 15

        Re: Needling me?

        There are of course many things that decide on how much of anything there is in certain markets. Quality is one but not the only one, cost, availability, marketing, spares etc all contribute as does prejudice.

        The British are very good at talking up the opposition and talking themselves down, we do it all the time. Heavens above I am even trying to get a few companies to supply me to sell in Germany... none are interested because they all think it is pointless, yet I am in Germany and am always being asked to supply stuff from the UK - from old cars, new cars through to beer, sausages and cheese. Yes jonny Foreigner DOES want our stuff but we seem to think we can't compete. Probably the same in Oz, they would buy them if they could get them but they can't so don't.

        There is some evidence to believe the demise of Symbian was partly the same, people wanted the phones but couldn't get them, Apple could supply and when the % market share fell instead of blaming lack of supply the boss blamed a burning platform and ditched a 60% market share for the MS 3% one...

        I am prepared to believe that some foreign companies have studied the Defender and built something similar, I am prepared to believe that we can't be bothered to invest in keeping up with modern technology (building by hand... how quaint, but how error prone, how slow, how expensive), I am prepared to believe we can't sell, I am NOT prepared to believe that we can't out perform the others.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: Needling me?

          > Probably the same in Oz, they would buy them if they could get them

          I think in the case of Oz, as soon as they weren't forced to buy commonwealth they were very happy to buy something cheaper and more reliable.

          As the saying goes if you want to get into the outback take a Landrover - if you want to come back out again take a Landcruiser

          1. Dave 15

            Re: Needling me?

            Advertising is a wonderful thing. The Japs did the same here, pretended that the only cars broken at the side of the road were British and theirs were perfect. It wasn't true here and I don't believe it is true in Australia. Similarly I remember how the iPhone was the only device that could do this and that and the other that Nokias (and sometimes even Microsoft and Blackberry) had done for years.

            I have a number of old Brit cars which I use, its fun to drive them, and yes now most are 50+ years old they need occasional work, but I have not yet found myself stranded by any of them.

            1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

              Re: Needling me?

              The Japs did the same here, pretended that the only cars broken at the side of the road were British and theirs were perfect

              Actually (from an empirical study of one household) I'd say that the evidence was pretty conclusively towards Japanese cars being build better than British. My wife's Morriss Minor as outlived quite a few of my cars (including a Rover Sterling 2.8V6 - using the Honda engine) but has broken down way more times than any of my cars (except, maybe, the Citroen XM - but no-one bought one of those expecting it to not break down).

              My current car is a Honda FR-V - the only time it's ever refused to start is when the original fitted battery (fitted in 2007) finally gave up the ghost. It gets serviced once a year, never uses any oil and everything fitted to it by Honda in 2007 still works.

              The Morris Minor lives on a regular diet of points, coils, light bulbs and other British car consumables. To it's credit, it doesn't use any oil either and 20 years of it sitting on the drive overnight (it gets used daily) there is only a small oil patch under the engine/gearbox.

              And (absent the issues caused by the consumables above) the only real issue we've had in 25 years of owning it is having to replace the cylinder head and one of the valves after a double-bounce caused by too enthusiatic passage over some pretty feirce speedbumps. My wife managed to drive it on 3 cylinders for a couple of weeks before mentioning to me that it was sounding a bit rough..

              Mind you, the amount we have spent over the years replacing iron-worm affected bits (bootlid, 3 wings, one twice, several sections of floorpan) as well as new carpets, seats, roof liner et. al. would have paid for a new car by now. I don't dare suggest it though.

            2. Not That Andrew

              Re: Needling me?

              Lucas weren't called the Princes of Darkness for nothing you know.

          2. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: Needling me?

            "I think in the case of Oz, as soon as they weren't forced to buy commonwealth they were very happy to buy something cheaper and more reliable."

            Exactly this and not just Australia.

            The New Zealand Post Office got stuck with a load of quite nasty unreliable british telephone exchanges and microwave systems in the 1970s under government orders, instead of the nice (and well tested) american and french ones they wanted. That was the final time they went along with such orders and the next round of kit was almost entirely japanese (Neax 61 switches and Fujitsu or NEC bearer systems)

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Needling me?

        "Compare that number to the number of Nissan Patrol's and Toyota Land Cruisers you see out there"

        I think you're forgetting that Japan is less that half the distance from Oz than teh UK is, and car imports from Japan have been cheap as hell down under for decades.

        If the equation was ONLY based on off-road capability, you'd see a lot more Defenders in the outback.

        (Although the fact that Land Cruisers have air-con is a big plus too I will admit ... which is why I keep smugly quiet on summer green-laning days in the UK in my nice cool Hilux, following a procession of Defender-90's with the windows all wound down)

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Needling me?

          You can keep cool in a Land Cruiser, but I can keep cool in comfort with more off road ability, with my Discovery 2.

          Oh and don't forget on road either, it actually handles and goes OK.

      3. itzman

        Re: Needling me?

        you dont think the fact that Japan is the nearest industralized country might just have something to do with it?

    3. Doc Ock

      Re: Needling me?

      >"As for the British armed forces buying something else, well, come the next war and they can't get spares, replacements, repairs etc. and have to throw in the towel in the first few days they might realise the folly of using Chinese uniforms, Belgium guns, American airplanes, Japanese 4x4s, German or French lorries, Spanish tanks, Norwegian engines et al."

      Well we do have British rocks* to throw.

      *Correction: they are imported from Sweden.

      1. Hans Neeson-Bumpsadese Silver badge

        Re: Belgian Guns

        Wasn't the SLR - a far more loved and respected personal weapon than the SA80 - basically a Belgian design?

        1. Commswonk Silver badge

          Re: Belgian Guns

          Yes; Fusil Automatique Leger IIRC.

          And a much better firearm firing a much more effective round as well, but the fashionable thinking of the day thought it it had too long a barrel for the Battle Taxis of the time...

          1. Phil.T.Tipp

            Re: Belgian Guns

            True. 7.62 is a better battlefield round and common with our GPMGs so no supply issues, but the L1A1 SLR longs were unweildy in wagons and the round had too much velocity for use in Norn Iron, it tended to go through the target and then the house across the street as well. 5.56 was touted as the future NATO round which is why we were stuck with it, common to the Septics with their Armalites. Naturally the MOD fvcked it up and commenced churning out the crap and expensive British-made SA80 instead of simply buying up boat loads of cheap yankee bang-sticks - pure jingoism. Our poor buggers will be stuck with that rusty stoppage magnet for a long while yet.

            1. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

              Re: Belgian Guns

              We should have swerved the SLR and continued with the EM-1 development, adopting standard NATO rounds, and getting a more honed and proven battle rifle than we ended up with the SA-80.

            2. Milton Silver badge

              Re: Belgian Guns

              The SLR (yes, a semi-auto variant of the Belgian FN-FAL; and full auto if you did the naughty trick with the matchstick) had its advantages as a full-power battlefield rifle, but even those who loved its extraordinary ability to reach out and, um, very permanently touch the enemy, even though he might be under the sad delusion that a brick wall or the side of a bus would protect him, would have to agree you couldn't carry large amounts of the 7.62 bombs around with you. And it was loooong. And pretty heavy too. A previous poster pointed out that it was a liability in FIBUA situations in the Emerald Toilet, because the rounds could pass clean through a block of flats full of civvies. The Little Yellow Card didn't explicitly mention that but the risks were horribly obvious, and even in the bandit country of South Armagh the lessons from Bisley of yore were also known to most: miss the butts with a 7.62 round and you could break a butcher's window in Woking.

              So even SLR fanbois, fond of its reach and one-hit-stopping power, have to admit that something was needed that was more compact, had full auto capability, worked at typical battlefield effective ranges (more typically 300m, not 1,000m) and let you haul more ammo. In Norn Iron the Regiment were able to use M-16s, and it wasn't hard to see the benefits, so it's no surprise that something with 5.56mm was ultimately chosen. The SA-80's bullpup configuration was an intelligent choice if you wanted something with the longest barrel for the shortest weapon—the Slur was a pig to manage in trucks and especially 432s.

              The SA-80 was an unreliable POS until (was it HK?) came to the rescue with a refactoring package, but since then it's performed pretty well. Left handers will never love it, and no, the UK probably should have just bought a better item OTS, but as a mature individual weapon it seems ok these days.

              As ever, you need the weapon for the environment. It's paradoxical to recall that apparently (I've no personal knoweldge of this) Auzzie troops preferred the 7.62 round in Vietnam, over the M-16's 5.56, because the former had greater penetrating power through foliage.

              That's why a properly equipped infantry battalion has a mixture of steel, from 5.56, assault rifles, minimis, GPMGs and, often as not, a few chaps with AIs or similar for those occasions when the enemy is uncooperatively distant but still has to be neutralised. Horses, as they say, for courses.

              1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

                Re: Belgian Guns

                Yes, HK did the L85A2, but they were owned by BAE Systems at the time.

                1. imanidiot Silver badge

                  Re: Belgian Guns

                  Indeed the L85A1 was built by Enfield and then required "ze Jermans" of H&K to fix all the problems found with the rifle. This fixed and updated rifle became the L85A2.

                  Some might find this video explaining the history and the changes in more detail interesting: https://www.forgottenweapons.com/enfield-l85a1-video/

                  1. Gary O'Brien

                    Re: Belgian Guns

                    Oh the German H&K that was owned by a British firm at the time

            3. Dave Bell

              Re: Belgian Guns

              That British-made gun was bad, but we hired the Germans to redesign it. It still could be better, there were a few odd choices that couldn't be worked around in the redesign, but it's hardly as dreadful as you imagine.

          2. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

            Re: Belgian Guns

            7.62x51,.... useless in fully auto, which is why the SLR was semi-auto only, we were riflemen, not spray and pray merchants. And yes, it was a bit long, if you served in armoured vehicles, you'd get issued with a Sterling.

          3. TonyJ Silver badge

            Re: Belgian Guns

            "...Yes; Fusil Automatique Leger IIRC.

            And a much better firearm firing a much more effective round as well, but the fashionable thinking of the day thought it it had too long a barrel for the Battle Taxis of the time...

            Not just too long but using a non standard round - 7.62mm vs the NATO standard 5.56mm. But it did pack one hell of a punch.

            Also heavier and very prone to jamming unless you were meticulous with cleaning and turned the gas return pressure right up, at which point it kicked like a fucking mule.

            And remember that a longer rifle takes longer to track across an arc to a target vs a shorter barrel albeit usually at the cost of longer range accuracy. But assault rifles are meant to be able to deliver rounds fast in a general direction and not necessarily with huge accuracy - it's enough to hit the target it doesn't usually matter where.

    4. Ellipsis
      Trollface

      Re: Needling me?

      > Rock solid, cheap, reliable, flexible, customisable, iconic and wonderful.

      You missed out dangerous, uncomfortable, inefficient, slow and non-conforming…

    5. TonyJ Silver badge

      Re: Needling me?

      ffs...aeroplanes.

    6. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: Needling me?

      Rock solid, cheap, reliable, flexible, customisable, iconic and wonderful

      Bollocks. If that was true, the lunatics around the Mediterranean firing ZPUs and Katushas at each other would have had them mounted on Landrovers. Funnily enough they are not.

      The ones that are flush with money and Saudi and Qatari sponsors mount them on Toyota. It may be expensive, but "it is called Invincible for a reason".

      The ones that really need cheap, solid, reliable and flexible, because they do not have a Sugar Daddy from an Oil State mount them on Mitsubishi or Isuzu (*).

      The Landy because it is EXPENSIVE, UNRELIABLE and INFLEXIBLE compared to a modern truck does not show up anywhere in that equation. That is the reality - it is past its time and if it was not for the British army ordering it it would have had its production stopped 100 times by now.

      As a proud owner of one of these I get stopped by the German anti-terror police patrol checkpoint outside Passau every time I come back from holiday. Despite not having any "mounted accessories". I have not noticed them stopping Landies by the way.

    7. Solmyr ibn Wali Barad

      Re: Spanish tanks

      Two minor corrections: these are IFVs, not tanks, and they're being built in Wales.

      Rest of the phrase seems to be correct though.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ajax_(Scout_SV)

    8. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Needling me?

      > What the hell is wrong with once in a while admitting that a British product was and is actually the best there is?

      Nothing at all, when it's true. The harsh reality is that "Made in Britain" became a warning label for most countries by the 1970s and stayed that way until the late 1990s.

      The reason that Toyota wiped the floor with the Landcruiser was because it was reliable, had a chassis that didn't break and it went places that Landrovers couldn't - contrary to the jibe about 1940s technology, for many years Landcruiser engines were licensed, metricated Chevrolet ones. The landcruiser 4.0 right up to the mid 1980s was a metric version of the Blueflame engine dating from the late 1930s.

      I spent many years working for an outfit where the job required spending lots of time in (and driving to the top of) New Zealand's many mountains. Landrovers were the least reliable vehicles, Landcruisers the most. Landrovers had toolkits because they needed to. You really don't want to be stuck 4000 feet up a ridge with a cold front rolling in carrying 4 feet of snow and 100mph winds. Landcruisers had them "just in case" and most of the time they'd never been opened in 10 years.

      The final nail in the coffin was simple TCO - Landies cost twice as much to run as Landcruisers when all the costs of breakdowns, servicing, etc were taken into account.

      Trying to production-line Defenders will be difficult. Even up to the very last they were almost entirely hand-assembled, unlike Landrover's other lines.

      1. PNGuinn
        Holmes

        Re: Needling me? @ Alan Brown

        "I spent many years working for an outfit where the job required spending lots of time IN (and driving to the top of) New Zealand's many mountains."

        Do you have a white cat?

        1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

          Re: White cat

          No, but his boss did.

    9. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Needling me?

      Put a stop to slave trading we had a healthy role in establishing in the first place...

      1. Triggerfish

        Re: Needling me?

        Put a stop to slave trading we had a healthy role in establishing in the first place...

        Slave trade has been around since Ug worked out if you hit the other Ug with a big stick hard enough to hurt him but not enough to kill him he will do what you want.

        We didn't start it *, we did help finish it.

        *OK we may have been good at it...

  3. Bob Wheeler

    Which market segment will they go for?

    I doubt they will go for the high end, as they already have the Range Rover still doing nicely after what some 30 years. Plenty of other makes there are well in the SUV/4x4 bracket.

    So it will be interesting what they come up with at the replacement point of the real utility (plus some comfort) end of the market.

    1. Dave 15

      Re: Which market segment will they go for?

      There is no reason not to go for a straight utility market, the armed forces should be buying British and we should make them HERE, if needed set up another factory!!!! We have plenty of unemployed people and indeed empty factories (all the old Rover, LDV, Peugeot --- yes even before they bought Vauxhall they already shut down factories here, Ford plants are unused).

      The defender had one HUGE advantage over the range rover et al, you could get it as a chassis with enginer etc and build a custom bodywork, plenty did, even the Germanz

      1. wolfetone Silver badge

        Re: Which market segment will they go for?

        Longbridge has been completely flattened and sold for development. There's a big M&S there now.

        Ryton (where Peugeot were based) has been completely flattened and sold for development. I think houses are on there now.

        I think the LDV works are still there, but they need to be completely flattened for them to be any use.

        1. Dave 15

          Re: Which market segment will they go for?

          Then use the LDV works. I am sure that the machinery if still present is out of date but the space is there.

          We have plenty of empty factory space because we have shut down so much, use some of it

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Which market segment will they go for?

            We have plenty of empty factory space because we have shut down so much, use some of it

            Actually we don't. Most old factories are quickly flattened and turned into light industrial, business park or housing sites, because factories are dirty and unfashionable if you're a planner. Moreover, few old factories would meet the needs of today, for large scale, high power demands, comms, ventilation, insulation, load bearing, transport infrastructure etc, so you'd be better off starting again in most cases.

            Having said that, the similar closures of military sites means there's plenty of land to use - St Athan is supposed to be Aston Martin's new production site, and there's plenty of other sites. And given the amount of prime farmland disappearing under crappy, ineffectual solar farms, I'd also suggest that if government hate farmland so much, manufacturing plants would be a better use than a few PV panels milking subsidies for a bank.

            A more pressing concern than land is why government allow scabby US tech companies to dodge taxes that manufacturers and all types of SME are not allowed to dodge, and why government continue to deliberately inflict damage left right and centre with business rates and carbon-obsessive energy, planning and environment policies that make the UK an expensive and difficult place to conduct business.

          2. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: Which market segment will they go for?

            Space can be anywhere. Out of date machinery is a liability.

            When GM moved one of its factories from Detroit to Mexico, it laid off 11,000 people in Detroit and hired 1500 in mexico. If forced to move it back, it is likely to only hire 500 or so and most of them will be pushing paper, not maintaining the robots doing the actual work.

            if you were a factory assembly line worker and you got laid off, you need to accept that those kinds of jobs aren't coming back - ever.

            And once you have robots doing the actual work the driving factor for location is supply lines, energy cost and distribution logistics. That tends to put the best location near the customers.

            Don't forget that the UK factory towns weren't built where they were because that's where people were - Manchester was a miserable wet fishing village with a perfect location for steam-engine powered cotton mills because that damp weather made dust explosions unlikely and it had good proximity to incoming raw materials as well as transport for finished product.

            People moved there for the work, not the other way around, and as the UK government has found out several times to its cost, directing that factories be located in XYZ areas to soak up unemployment simply results in high numbers of inexperienced people working on lines, turning out buggy product - and without years of expensive training, the problems won't get resolved.

            It may sound harsh but expecting the government to provide work or force employers to operate in areas of high unemployment simply because people have grown up and lived all their lives in that area is a non-starter. It's been tried and failed too many times under governments of all stripes - the money is better spent on educating and training to ensure that laid off factory workers (etc) can be employable in other fields, or paid to move where work is available.

      2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Which market segment will they go for?

        >the armed forces should be buying British

        Or they could invade somewhere and steal theirs - they are the ARMED forces after all

    2. Jan 0

      Re: Which market segment will they go for?

      How can the Range Rover compete?

      Whenever I find myself behind a Range Rover I marvel at how little ground clearance they have. Even if they had more ground clearance, their wheelbase is still too long. If you drive a Range River over a mound, what's to stop it getting stuck on the top? How can you beat SWB and high ground clearance? (Ok a decent winch comes in handy:).

      I think that applying modern engineering to an Early English Perpendicular 80" Landrover could produce an unbeatable compact modern off road vehicle. Otherwise i guess it's time to grin and bear the cost, size and parking problems of a Unimog.

      1. Ogi

        Re: Which market segment will they go for?

        > parking problems of a Unimog.

        What parking problems? You can make your own parking space with a beast like that =)

        Friend had a custom Chevy suburban ( Suburban body with Humvee bottom end and mil spec tyres) in London for a while. The wheels were too big for clamps and the beast too heavy to be towed, so he could park it literally wherever he wanted. It also took up 1 and a half road widths, so driving through London rush hour traffic was really interesting.

      2. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Which market segment will they go for?

        Whenever I find myself behind a Range Rover I marvel at how little ground clearance they have. Even if they had more ground clearance, their wheelbase is still too long. If you drive a Range River over a mound, what's to stop it getting stuck on the top?

        You move a switch and the whole thing rises up on its air suspension.

        When you are cruising along a road, you move the switch to lower the thing down for better handling.

        In fact, the latest Range Rovers don't require you to change the switch, they do it automatically.

        1. Jan 0

          Re: Which market segment will they go for?

          So how does the magic switch in a Range Rover increase the very modest gap between the differential casing and the roa^H^H^Hrock between the ruts? Does it instantly increase the diameter of the wheels?

          1. MJI Silver badge

            Re: Which market segment will they go for?

            Because the diffs are body mounted. L322 and on have independant suspension

        2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          Re: Which market segment will they go for?

          You move a switch and the whole thing rises up on its air suspension.

          When you are cruising along a road, you move the switch to lower the thing down for better handling.

          The old Citroen XM had that. Of course, you didn't ever want to use it as doing so ran a real risk of one of the ride-height adjuster valves becoming more Swiss-cheese-like than usual. And given the same hydro-pneumatic system ran the suspension, brakes *and* steering, blowing the valves could head to Much Fun(tm)[1] as all the suspension fluid departed the vehicle post-haste.

          I miss the comfort and ride of that car. I don't miss anything else.

          [1] Fortunately, switching off the engine usually stopped you in short order - especially when combined with locking the parking-brake. Which, in itself, was about as effective as trying to stop 1+ tonnes of car by putting your foot out of the door. It did carry less risk of multiple compound fractures to the leg though.

      3. MJI Silver badge

        Re: Which market segment will they go for?

        Range Rover now runs air suspension which means.

        Lowered for more stable on road behaviour.

        Raised for superior off road ability.

        Anyway was it a FFRR or an Ejoke?

  4. wolfetone Silver badge

    I had the honour of having a tour of JLR in Solihull years ago, and walked through the Defender factory before finishing up on the more modern parts. The Defender was still built like it was 1948. Staff all with proper old hand tools, physically manhandling the panels and components on to the vehicle. It was a beautiful thing to see.

    I have a feeling though that capacity wouldn't be that much of a problem for JLR. They've no problem acquiring different bits of land for staff car parks around Birmingham, not to mention the new engine factory that sprouted up on the M54. So, I think if JLR really wanted to build it here they wanted to.

    I think, however, that's a massive outlay on the cost of a vehicle that they're not quite sure has a market anymore. The old Defenders command high prices on the second hand market, but the new concepts for the Defender they want to bring out haven't set the world alight. The vehicle looks, well it's hard to know how to describe it without being rude. Plus there is a concensus amongst those in the farming communities at least (the ones I used to speak to anyway) that the new Defenders weren't like the old ones, and I don't think they're likely to purchase new Defenders to replace the ones they have, as they the older ones do tend to run forever. Even friends that I have that work for JLR aren't enthused by the new Defender, and you do get the feeling that the powers that be actually haven't got a clue what to create to replace it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "but the new concepts for the Defender they want to bring out haven't set the world alight"

      Well no, they've completely abandoned the rugged functional off-road vehicle concept and cloned the current Range Rover chelsea tractor rich-mummy buggy design. Utterly frikkin useless for what the Landie-90 drivers I go on trips with use their tracks for!

  5. A. Coatsworth Silver badge
    Stop

    "JLR would design the new Defender"

    Are they go to employ the same fsckwits who disgraced the Discovery and Range Rover lines by making them look like the aberration that is the Evoke?

    If so, it would be better to leave the Defender go in peace to tread mud in the Darién Gap of our memories, instead of defacing its legacy.

    1. Dave 15

      Design the new defender... quite simple really

      Go and look up the designs from 1970, photostat them and start building it again, nothing else is needed. If needed them just lie about the emissions, VW do and they are NOT the only ones. (when was the last time you believed a fuel economy figure, top speed or acceleration number from any manufacturer? )

      If you want a nod to the environmental lobby point out that any diesel landrover happily runs on the waste veg oil from the local chippy with no need to do anything to either the oil or the vehicle. It also lasts forever which in terms of pollution is far far better than cutting a 2 year old vehicle up and recycling it because some bit of pointless electronics decides the vehicle is too old.

      1. Evil Auditor Silver badge

        Re: Design the new defender... quite simple really

        when was the last time you believed a fuel economy figure, top speed or acceleration number from any manufacturer?

        The manufacturer states 16 mpg while in reality I do up to 26. It's a rare misstatement. Even more so from a Germanic manufacturer (an old G Wagon). So to answer your question: about 20 years ago.

      2. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Design the new defender... quite simple really

        Volkswagen didn't just lie though, did they? They taught their car to tell the lies.

        1. P. Lee Silver badge

          Re: Design the new defender... quite simple really

          >Volkswagen didn't just lie though, did they? They taught their car to tell the lies.

          See! Car-based AI is already here!

  6. theOtherJT

    Why did people like the defender?

    Well, it certainly wasn't the reliability. They break down all the time.

    The important point was that when they broke down - which they would - you could mend them with some string, a hammer, and a bit of swearing. They weren't bullet proof, but they were sort of idiot proof. You don't need a million quid's worth of specialist electronic tools and a degree in software engineering to work out what was wrong with one and fix it.

    And I love that about them, I really do. I'm just not sure you can build a car like that any more and still get it through all the safety and emissions regulations we have now. I'd love to be proven wrong, but having an engine to which the word "tolerance" is more likely to apply to the person who has to work on the bastard thing, than to anything measured in decimal places of a millimetre just doesn't sound like something you can do these days.

    1. Dave 15

      Re: Why did people like the defender?

      Really? Mine doesn't break down, and it is abused (sometimes I remember to put some fresh oil in but usually only when the noise reminds me). TBH using modern machine tools and modern materials technology should make all of them as reliable as each other, problem with hand made stuff is that no two are actually the same, yours might be a Friday afternoon recovering from the pub crock, or a Monday morning hung over disaster, mine might be the wow I have just had a payrise carefully constructed mid week one, you don't know, decent machine tools and automation get rid of the guess work.

      1. theOtherJT

        Re: Why did people like the defender?

        @Dave 15

        You may well be right, but I think I may also be right. One of my uncles used to work for Land Rover, and some of the things that came and went past him it's hard to imagine how they even got out of the factory. They were a mess, and it was just impossible to keep them running properly because they were fundamentally badly built to start with.

        A proper modern, well managed assembly process could almost certainly fix that - and I'd love to have had a chance to drive a defender that was actually put together right - the only one I ever did drive constantly felt like it was on the verge of falling apart. (My mate who owned it insisted that that was perfectly normal, and that you just needed to hit the dash occasionally to get the lights to come on, which is why there was a large flat rock in the passenger foot well)

        So, sure, I don't have a problem with that. Build the damn things better.

        But once you're building them better, you still have the "how do I fix this in a field 200 miles away from the nearest source of spare parts or for that matter diagnostic tools" problem, and I'm not so sure about that one.

        Landies are great to work on because they're just so primitive by today's standards. Once you have to start including all sorts electronic gubbins to get them through the emissions/safety tests, that's just a whole ton of things that when they go wrong - and every car I've ever owned has developed some sort of electrical fault at some point - they're going to be impossible to put right without a trip to a well equipped garage.

        Maybe it's possible to build a car full of seat belt sensors, and anti-lock brake sensors, and fuel injection sensors and exhaust emission sensors, and engine management sensors, and be absolutely certain that all of those are just going to Keep Working (tm) but I've not seen one thus far...

    2. Triggerfish

      Re: Why did people like the defender?

      You don't need a million quid's worth of specialist electronic tools and a degree in software engineering to work out what was wrong with one and fix it.

      Seen a few old school Defenders, Hilux etc in Asia, that aspect I think is one of their strongest. If the thing breaks down in England you're fine, can't imagine trying to get a modern off roader repaired in some countries.

      But I'll agree with the second poster modern materials and tooling sounds fine and sensible and should give you better kit.

      1. Dan McIntyre

        Re: Why did people like the defender?

        If the thing breaks down in England you're fine, can't imagine trying to get a modern off roader repaired in some countries.

        You might be surprised. I have travelled various parts of the world including some we'd refer to as 3rd world areas in various vehicles ranging from a Suzuki SJ to a 1938 Argson tricycle and in some of the more obscure places repairs and parts have been easier to obtain than here in the UK for a mainstream car. Better customer service too in most cases as a lot of garages are family run, small and friendly.

        I've managed to get clutch bearings for a Suzuki SJ in deepest darkest Russia and a spare wheel and clutch rod, plus welding gear, very early on a Sunday morning, for an Argson. Try doing that in the UK with your Focus or Astra or whatever.

    3. Alister Silver badge

      Re: Why did people like the defender?

      Well, it certainly wasn't the reliability. They break down all the time.

      This is just not true, earlier Defenders (and Series Land Rovers ) will go for years without breaking down. The problem is with the more recent electronic bits, but the general mechanicals will go for ever with a bit of maintenance occasionally.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Why did people like the defender?

        " the general mechanicals will go for ever with a bit of maintenance "

        Front half shafts were a common casualty on all our Series 2s. That was really the final straw for them.

      2. bobbear

        Re: Why did people like the defender?

        Re: Why did people like the defender?

        Well, it certainly wasn't the reliability. They break down all the time.

        -------------

        Seconded - I spent a lot of my working life in the 70's and 80's in a team driving LWB Land Rovers and although you couldn't beat them for off-road use, you couldn't rely on getting back - they were pretty unreliable, not to mention crude, noisy and uncomfortable. The drive shafts and gearbox were both under-specced weak points, especially on the 3.5 litre model. We used to reckon on about 13,000 miles between half-shaft failures and about 30,000 miles for a gearbox. We moaned a lot about the reliability of them, and took a head office guy up to a site once to show him the problems were real and, as chance would have it, we were just going slowly up the track to a site and 'BANG' another rear half shaft gave up the ghost and we had to slowly drive 50 miles back on the front wheels only. It was such a common failure that the guys in the workshop could change them while you waited, if they could hook out the broken piece from the diff, that was.. The basic design concept was brilliant, but the engineering let them down and they never kept up with the times. The story of British industry, I guess, especially the car wreck that was the British motor industry in the 70's...

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Why did people like the defender?

          You can buy tougher half shafts

    4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Why did people like the defender?

      "They weren't bullet proof"

      Now you tell me. I had the occasional ride through Belfast in Army LRs. They did have some internal cladding AFAICR. It was held on by nut & bolt and the bolts hadn't been cut to length. The sticky-out ends were lethal.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

    5. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Why did people like the defender?

      If you keep on top of maintenance they can be reliable.

      But they do have niggles, however the basic vehicle can be kept going with repairs for decades.

      They are basically a big Meccano set for adults.

    6. dbannon

      Re: Why did people like the defender?

      "You don't need a million quid's worth of specialist electronic tools and a degree in software engineering to work out what was wrong with one and fix it."

      That may well apply to early defenders but a close friend spent over A$13,000 trying to get his antilock brakes fixed, ended up selling it quietly because he simply did not trust them.

      I, personally, have owned three English designed and at least partially built cars. One comment, Lucas Electrics ! I think that should be enough.

  7. J. R. Hartley

    "cannot"

    Bollocks

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Superceded? NOT!

    "Although long since superseded by superior Japanese wagons in its core market of "general purpose off-road-capable 4x4""

    You, what?? I beg to differ - on our 'green lanes' days we have about a 50/50 mix of defenders and discoveries vs a motley crew of Japanese imports such as hilux surfs, nissan patrols, suzuki jimny's etc.

    There is a HUGE market for Land Rover Defender after market parts and accessories, so they're going to be around for a very long time yet even if they aren't ever produced again.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Superceded? NOT!

      Can someone tell me of a superior Japanese off roader to my Discovery 2?

      Because I have not heard of any.

      Oh and the only breakdown I had was due to age and a rubber pipe popped off a metal pipe.

      Comfort, it is very comfortable.

      Ability, good on ordinary AT tyres, well it does have traction control AND diff lock.

      Handling, it is ACE for an odd roader.

      Performance, stage 1 TD5 no contest.

      It looks good, goes well, comfortable, could go anywhere between a muddy field and a posh hotel.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Probably won't be built in Blighty, sadly"

    Which was the last remaining reason to go for one ahead of the superior Japanese rivals!

    Thanks but no thanks.

  10. PickledAardvark

    Defender end was strange

    JLR had daily free advertising for the Land Rover County/Defender on UK TV -- and anywhere that the programmes were broadcast. (Occasionally on an old episode of Heartbeat, you'll see an Austin Gypsy, easily mistaken for a classic Land Rover.)

    JLR does not understand free adverts. They don't understand the brand image of Land Rover.

    The Defender puffed out fumes owing to an old engine, so that problem could be fixed. The Austin FX4 taxi had a lousy engine and they changed it many times,

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Defender end was strange

      Engines, well there is a lot of rubbish spouted about them

      Series, they had a generally reliable push rod engine, not powerful nor economical but lasted for ever. Most well known are the 2 1/4 petrol and Diesel

      90/110 enlarged series engines (2.5l), V8 and the 19J, only disaster was the 19J, now mostly replaced by 200 and 300 from rotten Discoverys.

      Defender

      200, a revolutionary direct injection Diesel, VERY reliable, a classic engine.

      300, an improved 200 with more power and more refinement. Killed off by EU3. Last version of the Series engines.

      TD5, a unit injector engine, only survivor from a Rover group new engine programme, powerful, reliable, very tuneable, best engine note besides a V8. Killed off by EU4.

      Puma, Ford Transhit engine, rough, sound van like, torquey but no power, not very reliable compared to the previous 3 lumps.

      Most engines were reliable with a few sillies like the plastic head dowls, and timing belt alignment. Only bad engine was the early turbo Diesel (19J).

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Owners of old Landrovers hardly ever buy new ones - they only buy 'less old' ones, so why would JLR bother producing in UK? Defender production this century never went above 3% of output anyway...

    The idea of taking a Toy-boat-a anywhere isn't one i'd relish, the days of them being more reliable off or on road than a Landrover ended in the 1990's.

    The comment above regarding ground clearance of the later models is worthy of explanation - JLR produce vehicles that people want to buy, they are developed for the biggest markets - currently USA, Russia and China - but are given 'offroad' capability (better than any other IMO) that will barely be used - if ever. Some models benefit from air suspension that can be raised automatically or manually to give greater clearance when needed, conversely, it can also be lowered to give car park clearance or greater stability at speed. In addition, the traction control systems mean that you can be 'cross axel'd' but still maintain traction and forwards movement - something that would leave an earlier Defender (or every Japanese offroader i've driven) in need of a tow or assistance from a shovel or winch.

  12. PhilipN Silver badge

    Time to face reality

    That's business reality.

    First, when VW resurrected the Beetle it was not a Beetle. It was designed to sort of maybe look a bit like a beetle and latest iterations are no longer so recognisable.

    BMW and the Mini - ditto, even worse. Anyone who compares the latest so-called Mini with Issigonis' original is living in Cloud Cuckoo Land.

    Point : So any "new improved" Defender will be no such thing. End of story.

    Second, why should JLR cannibalise its own sales with an upper range SUV when they already have several Range Rover models there. That leaves space - perhaps - for a low end rugged off-roader which is either (a) cheap and cheerful and therefore NOT WORTH THE INVESTMENT or (b) full of today's essential bells and whistles ....see "Point" above.

    One possible option is the cheap and cheerful version for e.g. China's farmers. Anyone who has seen a farmer transporting his produce to market by means of a generator lashed to an axle will know what I mean. BUT Tata-owned JLR obviously do not want to do cheap and cheerful and they probably would do better embarking on such a business plan from India anyway.

    Third I have been driving Jags for many years and now have two and a Land Rover D4**. Whilst I was cautiously happy with the business and design decisions coming from JLR UK I am fast becoming thoroughly pissed off with local service since they clearly want service income to compete with sales income. For example whereas the service depot used to be spread over two floors it is now cramped into one floor crammed with Jags and LR's fighting for space.

    Tata and JLR are going to have to come up with something good and I mean very VERY bloody good to retain my loyalty to the Defender brand.

    **Maybe not the style that most purists here are waxing lyrical about but I am *****d if I am going to try and drive a 90 or 120 through rush hour traffic.

    1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Time to face reality

      BMW and the Mini - ditto, even worse. Anyone who compares the latest so-called Mini with Issigonis' original is living in Cloud Cuckoo Land.

      Of course, the flipside of this is the modern Fiat Cinquecento. I remember the ones from the 70s [1] and the modern ones are pretty close in design, but with modern internals. Of course, the modern internal are still Fiat so don't expect them to be particularly robust or reliable but are still great fun while they work..

      [1] My dad worked for an Italian pharma company and so, in the 70s) used to get work-experience Italian students coming over to stay with us for a few weeks each summer. One of them drove all the way to the UK from Milan in his original Fiat Cinquecento. We used to refer to it as "the travelling overcoat"..

  13. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

    You don't need a million quid's worth of specialist electronic tools and a degree in software engineering to work out what was wrong with one and fix it.

    You dont need that with a "modern" car!

    People , especailly IT types, used to joke that one day a car would have a single light on the dashboard saying "error" .

    Now those days have arrived , all you need is a computer , which as we know are not rare or expensive, and a £5 ODB2 adaptor - And The Car Will Tell YOU What is wrong.

    1. theOtherJT

      "The Car Will Tell YOU What is wrong"

      Mine bloody won't. My BMW is absolutely convinced there's nothing wrong with it. The diagnostics are all fine.

      Except when they're not. The stability control light comes on, and the ABS stops working... until you go over a sharp bump and then it's fine. It's been to BMW 3 times and all they say, every time is "There's nothing wrong with it." ... well, clearly there is or the bloody light wouldn't keep coming on!

      1. Dave 15

        Re: "The Car Will Tell YOU What is wrong"

        Go round the wheels and suspension, wiggle the wires, find which one triggers the issue and replace it.

        OR

        Go and buy a decent car.... BMW stopped making anything of quality many years back and rely on people thinking they are still good while sticking the cheapest and nastiest parts in they can (and yes, I did work for one of the suppliers and can tell some horror stories)

      2. Dave 15

        Re: "The Car Will Tell YOU What is wrong"

        I suggest you take it back to them, tell them to check it, if they cant check it tell them you will drive it full speed into the front of their showroom next time the light shows.

        Alternatively, go and buy a decent car... as in British not German

    2. j.bourne

      >The car will tell you what is wrong?

      Says the voice with no experience. What the car will tell you is the gadgetwhatsit isn't giving a sensible reading/is malfunctioning or some such. When it reality theres a chafed wire in the wiring loom miles from the gadgetwhatsit 6 inches away from where it connects to someother gadgetwhatsitcontrolunit at the other end of the car - and that's if you use the diagnostics correctly.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Leccy Land Rover

    What I don't understand is why Jaguar Land Rover didn't have a replacement vehicle planned in. I mean, a new electric off roader would have made a lot of sense for the average farmer, given that you can just plug it in when you get back to your yard in the evening. Need a longer range? Build a plug-in hybrid.

    And no, I don't believe the hype about having wheel mounted motors. That much mass without suspension would be a disaster in an off-roader, so, one motor at the front, one at the rear, good long travel suspension with conventional drive shafts and a lockable differential front and rear to allow for really slippy conditions. Build with the ethos of making the thing repairable, and you're on to a winner.

    1. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: Leccy Land Rover

      Because the average farmed likely doesn't WANT an electric vehicle and I suspect most would actually drive more in a day than the range provided by any practical sized battery pack in a 4x4 vehicle. Plus making an electric 4x4 that is resistance to the average use of such a vehicle is probably a massive challenge, which would make it too expensive as a product. I've witness about 400 kgs of mud being removed from a SII 109" after a particularly muddy stretch of greenlaning. Seriously gloopy stuff that got packed EVERYWHERE. Granted the driver just about burried the nose into a bank and then decided he'd just bulldoze on but that's the sort of thing you can expect a true 4x4 to have to face. That, combined with the requirement for being able to cross a stream that comes up to near the roofline makes me think a practical electric 4x4 as a commercial producs is the fevered dream of a madman.

      The true intent of the old Series, 90/110 and Defender isn't doing the groceries and once in a while dragging the horse trailer with little Annie's pony twenty yards through a well maintained pasture. It's taking a farmer with a whole bunch of heavy equipment uphill to the back pasture down 2 miles of unmaintained muddy "road" that has been rutted and destroyed by the neighbours tractor the day before. And then back down. With the demise of the Defender there are even fewer options for vehicles of this nature.

    2. Dave 15

      Re: Leccy Land Rover

      I dont believe that electric motors in each wheel should be a weight issue. Make the wheel (often steel already) one half of the motor and you get enormous torque as well. Then you can control the speed of each wheel - even allowing you to steer by varying the speed of inside and outside wheels.

      But to be more honest I still dont buy into JLRs decisions on this. There is no reason at all why the old defender couldn't have been built for the rest of the world even if the EU didnt like it, more over I refuse to believe they couldn't fit a more modern engine from the rest of the JLR range to keep the nanny EU happy.

      Now they are going to build it abroad (India or China) ... this was the intention all along, they are planning on closing the UK factories - probably due to the excessive cost of energy (driven by EU regulations and our governments stupidity).

  15. Potemkine Silver badge

    An indian icon is back!

    and that tells a lot about the status of UK's industries

  16. nilfs2
    FAIL

    Rust buckets

    My 1961 Series 2 Land Rover is older than me, probably it is going to be there when I leave this world since I restored it at my garage with simple tools, basic knowledge, and a modest budget; big part of the body is aluminum and the chassis could be made from scratch by a welder with average skills. I can't say the same for Land Cruisers, they attract rust like sugar attracts ants, by the time you are done restoring it, you have to start taking care of the rust.

  17. Dave 15

    Built abrroad

    Disgusting. But then HP sauce is also made abroad.

    Many reasons:

    a) Try getting funding to make something in the UK.... 'oh you can't do that, no, that will never do'

    b) Try paying the energy bill in the UK (all that gas from Russia and nuclear power from France... far too expensive, and the EU stop us burning coal)

    c) Factory space... well, no chance of that my son, we may once have had factories but they have been sold off for yuppy housing - to foreigners of course who rent them back to the tax payer for the poor to live in

    d) Equipment... well as all our equipment manufacturers have been screwed over by the means above that is all imported, so rather than move it here you might as well stay there

    e) Rules and regs... for every employee with a spanner you will require 15 managers and 25 health and safety advisers.

    1. Dave 15

      Re: Built abrroad

      Think you are entirely correct.

      Add another one - the cost of capital (if you manage to persuade someone you can make something in the UK the interest rates are far too high and stupidly variable (the government stupidly tries to use interest rates to control inflation - stupid because it cant work. ... inflation being more demand than supply raising interest rates stops any increase in supply, and as interest is paid by a fraction on mortgages and given to a small number of extraordinarily rich people it is doing little to suppress demand)

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