The jubilant return of the Land Rover Defender for 2020 brought some excitement to a category long governed by Jeep Wranglers and Toyota 4Runners. Now, Land Rover's midsize luxury SUV is a strong rival to those stalwarts as well as the Ford Bronco. Edmunds has ranked the Defender favorably as a rugged but luxurious SUV that offers off-road capabilities and on-road refinement.
Land Rover offers two-door (Defender 90) and four-door (Defender 110) models, three engines, and various trim levels that expand the Defender's range of features and capabilities. The engine choices, depending on the trim level, are a 2.0-liter inline-four engine with 296 hp, a 395-horsepower inline six-cylinder and a 518-horsepower supercharged V8. All models come standard with all-wheel drive and a smooth eight-speed automatic transmission. Five-passenger seating is also standard, but you can opt for a two-person third-row seat in the Defender 110. In addition, there are plenty of options you can choose from to upgrade your Defender — but beware that might take the price well over six figures.
Though we don't have any official information about changes for the 2024 model year, there are rumors that a mightier Defender is on its way, possibly a high-performance SVR model (though some reports point to SVX badging). This new variant might embrace a stronger V8 and stouter off-road bits. Even if the Defender stays the same, though, you can feel confident that you'll drive off the lot in a capable and comfortable vehicle.