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Interest in new Land Rover Defender “order of magnitude” more than Evoque

Motors | Published:

Following the reveal of the new Defender, interest has been more than double that of the new Evoque

The Defender's arrival has been long awaited

Early interest in the newly revealed Land Rover Defender has been more than double what the Range Rover Evoque received ahead of its reveal in November last year.

After the covers were pulled off the all-new off-roader at the Frankfurt motor show this week, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) UK managing director Rawdon Glover told the PA news agency that the firm was pleased with the reception the Defender had received.

“It’s difficult to quantify whether the response has been bigger than we expected,” he said. “We know there’s a lot of interest and pent up demand, and it’s arguably one of the biggest car reveals of the year, but it’s hard to know how that will translate.

“That said, we’ve had 14,000 people say they’re interested and want to be kept informed. Considering we had about 6,000 for Evoque and we sell about 20,000 Evoques a year, it’s an order of magnitude different.”

He also reported that following the reveal, JLR was feeding about three leads per minute through to its retailers.

The Defender has traditionally been seen as a workhorse model, favoured by those who need a simple but effective off-roader. However, this new version also wants to appeal to urban buyers looking for a premium and practical SUV.

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Glover said that the company isn’t targeting one demographic and thinks there’s “something for everyone” in the range. To reach new premium buyers while appealing to the traditional Defender demographic, JLR is offering a high-specification urban-focused version as well as a £35,000 commercial vehicle.

Widening its appeal appears to be working, as he confirmed about 70 per cent of interested buyers were coming from other brands.

The original iconic Defender went out of production in 2016. The new version is instantly recognisable as its successor thanks to its boxy silhouette, punctuated with modern features such as LED headlights.

The new Defender is based on a new aluminium platform and gets a new configurable terrain response system that adapts the 4×4’s drive settings for the surface it’s driving on. The interior combines a traditional spartan look that stays true to its rugged roots with a modern infotainment system and over-the-air updates.

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