Land Rover Defender Sport Reportedly Coming In 2026 With A Focus On On-Road Comfort

We’ve heard countless rumors about the upcoming Land Rover Defender, but there hasn’t been much in the way of specifics. That’s changing today as Car Magazine has provided a pretty extensive report on what to expect.

According the magazine’s sources, the Defender will be launched in 2020 and initially offered in three body styles. These are slated to include two-door variants, with hard and soft tops, as well as a four-door model with a metal roof.

All will ride on a new aluminum monocoque architecture which is lighter than stiffer than the previous box-on-frame setup. The model is also slated to receive an independent rear suspension, but fans shouldn’t fret as the company will reportedly offer an assortment of axle, suspension and tire choices to ensure the Defender can tackle everything from a day of shopping to hardcore off-roading.

Engine options remain unconfirmed, but entry-level models are expected to offer turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinders in both petrol and diesel guise. There should also be more powerful inline six-cylinder petrol and diesel engines on higher-end variants.

Interestingly, the report also mentions a Defender Sport. That particular model is slated to arrive in 2026 and it will reportedly be built at the company’s new plant in Nitra, Slovakia to keep costs down.

Little is known about the model, but the report says the Defender Sport will be a lifestyle vehicle with better on-road performance. That isn’t much to go on, but the magazine says people should “Think of it as a modern Suzuki Jimny / Jeep Wrangler for the well-to-do in-crowd.”

Engine options could presumably be shared with the standard Defender, but there’s also word of an electric version of the Defender Sport.

There are still plenty of unanswered questions about the upcoming Defender, but we should learn more about a year from now when the model is officially introduced.

  • TheBelltower

    The line between Land Rover and Range Rover vehicles has gotten blurred. Most people don’t understand the difference anyway. IMO, Land Rover should remain the rugged looking offroad capable vehicles, and not be the full-lux barges like LR Range Rovers.

  • GPFan

    Wants the point on focusing on on ‘road comfort’?
    That’s what every other RR, LR product does. Give us something bad ass!! Something unique

    • Bash

      True, but then who will buy it? I mean how many they would sell?

      • Mike anonymous

        Ahhh,.. 2008 – 2013. A time I remember when Land Rover was a much more focused company. Focused on who they were as a brand and company (opposed to focused on how much money they could squeeze out of their name and brand).

        Range Rovers were Range Rovers;
        The Range Rover
        The Range Rover Sport
        The Range Rove Evoque (Coupe & 4-Door)
        & that was it…

        Land Rovers were Land Rovers;
        The LandRover Defender
        The LandRover Freelander 2
        The LandRover Discovery 4
        & that was it…

        4 Range Rovers… & 3 Land Rovers.., and that was it. & What we could expect from the future of the Range Rover line… we looked to the LRX Concept. When looking to the future of the LandRover line we looked to the DC100 Concepts. There we’re not 100 different variations of vehicles, the lines were not so blurred, and everything was simply focused. But all of that changed in 2014 & it has not really been the same since.

        It seems for many automakers today, a simple question remains: “Stay focused to who we are as a company, our products, and our brand,.. stray true to our history….. OR throw caution to the wind for simple monetary profit???”

  • Mr. EP9

    So, I guess some time next year is when we can expect the next Defender to be unveiled.

  • Iberian Rekluse

    Looks like Suzuki’s Jimny beat them to the punch!

  • robotlogic

    “On-Road Comfort”, really? I think I’d focus on getting a ton more “Reliability” first if I were Rover!

  • WHO’S THINKING ABOUT 2026?

  • Bob

    The “Sport” in any Land Rover/Range Rover is misleading. The Range Rover Sport drives marginally better than the Range Rover on-road but is far from sporty. I think a different title would be more appropriate.

    • Matt

      Marketing marketing marketing. The word ‘sport’ resonates with consumers, simple as that. It’s also a far more concise way of describing a vehicle’s basic intent than to say “Marginally Better On-Road Edition”.

      • Bob

        Sure, but there are other nouns aside from Sport available amongst the thousands that we find in the english language.

        It’s such a good car, it’s just disappointing if you’re expecting a sporty experience and that does it a major disservice for what it could alternatively be billed as.

  • Bash

    I hope they do it right.

  • FactChecker90803

    Sorry Land Rover, but the Jeep Wrangler has already invaded the land if the well too doo, I see them in Malibu, Vail, Summerlin, Lake Tahoe, Mammoth, Santa Monica, Westwood and my home town of Rolling hills. Wrangler is now more ubiquitous then most other High End SUV’S.

    • Mike anonymous

      OH and let’s not forget about the upcoming Wagoneer,.. everyone seems to have forgotten about the upcoming RangRover/LandRover competitor from Jeep.

      • Stephen G

        We have not forgotten…it has be “talked” about for the last 15 years!

        • Mike anonymous

          But the difference is that there actually working on it right now (opposed to decided wether or not to make it).

  • Smith

    There is no need for just another Land Rover or Range Rover. The Defender was something different and special, if the new one is more on road friendly, it is being positioned as just another Land Rover, positioned somewhere in the line-up, while it should be totally and completely separate from the existing line-up.

  • El de Ngaan

    “The all-new Defender is launched to be launched in 2020”

  • lagunas3ca

    Anybody that doesn’t understand the focus on on-road comfort has clearly never driven in a Defender. Even on the smoothest surface you can still feel your brain rattling in your skull.

  • Tumbi Mtika
  • Craig

    At first glance – I thought it was the new Suzuki Jimny.

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