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Next Land Rover Defender to spawn smaller model, EV

by Ronan Glon

The Defender Sport is tentatively scheduled for a 2026 release.

Land Rover will revive the Defender nameplate in 2019. The line-up will initially include two- and four-door models, but a new report suggests the Defender family will grow considerably during its production run.

Executives see the Defender as one of Land Rover's key pillars, along with Discovery and Range Rover. And, much like the Discovery and the Range Rover have both spawned Sport-badged models, the Defender will get its own Sport variant aimed at a different set of buyers. The catch is that it's not scheduled to go on sale until 2026.

British magazine Car learned that, when it finally arrives, the Defender Sport will be a more road-focused, lifestyle-oriented SUV than the standard Defender. It will be offered with a battery-electric powertrain, though buyers will also be able to select an internal combustion engine. The publication adds the Sport will be Land Rover's answer to the Jeep Wrangler, which seemingly confirms the next-generation Defender will be bigger and more expensive than its predecessor (pictured).

The Sport is at the embryonic stage of development. Land Rover is currently focusing on putting the final touches on the standard Defender, which we expect to see in the metal no later than summer 2019. At launch, the line-up will consist of two- and four-door hardtop models and a two-door with a soft top.

Photo by Ronan Glon.