Combining classic Land Rover styling, a luxurious interior and enviable off-road performance, the new Land Rover Defender has quickly become one of our higher-ranked midsize luxury SUVs. But Land Rover isn't content to sit back and bask in its success; the automaker is introducing a host of updates for the 2022 Defender.
Headlining the changes for the 2022 Land Rover Defender is the addition of a supercharged V8. Available in both two-door (Defender 90) and four-door (Defender 110) body styles, the eight-cylinder produces an impressive 518 horsepower and 461 lb-ft of torque. Land Rover says the Defender 90 with this engine can rocket from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.9 seconds. For reference, the powertrain one rung down the ladder is a turbo-six with a mild hybrid system. All told, it makes 395 hp and 416 lb-ft. In Edmunds' testing, we achieved a quickest acceleration time of 6.7 seconds in a Defender 110 with this powertrain.
The V8 also features specialized suspension tuning for sharper handling and a Dynamic driving mode to make the most of the extra power and capability. A quad exhaust system, unique 22-inch wheels, and larger brakes with blue calipers distinguish the V8 from lesser Defenders. The seats and steering wheel feature faux suede detailing to carry the sport theming to the interior.
A handful of new trim levels offer Defender buyers a deeper level of customization. The XS Edition effectively replaces the 2020 model's First Edition trim, which ticked nearly every option box and added a few details not found on any other model. In the XS Edition's case, this means unique wheels and body-colored lower cladding and wheel arches. The new range-topping Carpathian Edition starts with the V8 engine and includes black exterior trim and a semi-matte protective film covering the Carpathian Grey paint scheme.
Finally, the Defender will have a new 11.4-inch touchscreen with curved glass available as an option.