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H166 HUE The Last Defender


ERNO
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Isn't it the fact that the Defender is shit for both pedestrians and occupants in an accident that it hasn't been sold in the US for yonks?

 

I've never really understood the market for these to be honest. They are hideously expensive brand new and uncompromisingly uncomfortable, very basic in design yet not terribly reliable and anybody who wants to "go anywhere" may as well buy one from 20 years ago that's essentially the same but cheaper. I very rarely see them around up here, most have simply dissolved away and all the farmers have Hilux pick-ups.

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Isn't it the fact that the Defender is shit for both pedestrians and occupants in an accident that it hasn't been sold in the US for yonks?

It's only recently that commercial vehicles have been subjected to the same crash tests as cars in the US and Europe.

 

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The body on frame pickups popular in the US used to crash REALLY badly.

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I don't think this will be the last we see of the Defender really, TATA love selling old tech to Indians, so perhaps an Indian Defender is on the cards. The Ford Cargo and Leyland PD3 still live on in India...Just a thought

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Do we deffo know it's for pedestrian safety? My money's on the space could be used more efficiently for a line that churns out motors faster and at a higher profit margin (which is fair enough, it's a business at the end of the day).

I think that's exactly it, plus JLR want to move Solihull to be all riveted ally moncoque manufacturing. When the Disco retires in March that will be the end of steel chassis-based construction there.

 

What you also realise watching the final assembly there is that a LWB RR costs basically the same to manufacture as a Disco but sells for twice as much. So the more high-end motors you can have sailing down the line, the better for the West Midlands and Tata's economies.

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Land Rovers a plenty around these parts.

 

I don't get out of London much so I was wondering how many were still doing active work in fields. The HiLux is fairly ubiquitous too but the only Land Rovers I see are an old Series LR which someone local drives and the odd "urban" Defender. 

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I think that's exactly it, plus JLR want to move Solihull to be all riveted ally moncoque manufacturing. When the Disco retires in March that will be the end of steel chassis-based construction there.

 

What you also realise watching the final assembly there is that a LWB RR costs basically the same to manufacture as a Disco but sells for twice as much. So the more high-end motors you can have sailing down the line, the better for the West Midlands and Tata's economies.

 

So does this mean the RR Sport is body on chassis as well?!

 

That is also so correct. VW loses money on Lupos and Polos and things, but makes mega bunce on its Audis. They cost the same to make. Who loses? Stupid consumers...

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I think the new Defender platform, whatever that may be, might be quite exciting. I have the impression that there's a decent amount of R&D money around at JLR these days to come up with something good. It would be great to see something with a pickup body, or other special bodies for that matter, at a price that was affordable to farmers, local authorities, power companies etc.

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So does this mean the RR Sport is body on chassis as well?!

 

That is also so correct. VW loses money on Lupos and Polos and things, but makes mega bunce on its Audis. They cost the same to make. Who loses? Stupid consumers...

No, the new RRS uses the same platform as the proper Range Rover. That leaves the Discovery as the only thing with a chassis.

The Discovery Sport and Evoque use the Freelander 2 platform , which is basically a 10 year old Mondeo one, ironically put together in the same factory where the X-Type was made.

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I drive a 2a 109" diesel. I work at a rural Lincolnshire Main LR dealer. We still have a dozen Defenders "in stock". I have the privilege of drilling holes in pristine bodywork, and lobbing rivnuts in them. It's quite an emotional feeling, knowing these are the last ones we'll register... seriously. But, business is business. More money can be had by fitting electric automatic opening sidesteps to RR Sports, than by selling filters to enthusiasts, who all crow on about "the good old days". I prefer mine because it has elbow room. I also feel mine handles better on leaf springs, than modern boingies.... but, progress is progress. If the company survives, just like the Judge Dredd film perceived, then so be it, I keep my job.

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