End of the road for Land Rover Defender

A mud splattered Land Rover is a familiar sight on the country roads of Britain, but at the end of this week the last Defender will roll off the production line. 



With its rugged, off-road capabilities, the Defender proved exceptionally popular, quickly becoming the must-have vehicle for anyone who wanted to surge through water or drive up near vertical muddy slopes.


However, the decision to end production comes after the Defender was unable to adapt to the recent emission laws announced in 2013.

With a 68-year production history, the first model, the Series One, of the Jaguar Land Rover Defender was made in the aftermath of world war two, when there was strict rationing on raw materials. The panels were made from left over aircraft aluminium, and a result of a surplus of army paints, the only colours available were various shades of green. Every part was fitted and bolted together by hand in a factory in Solihull, Birmingham – a factory that is still used to this day.

Land Rover continued to improve the car with numerous models being released from 1948 to 1990, when it was renamed the Defender. The design has changed little over the past 70 years, although the steering wheel is no longer in the middle of the vehicle.

The cars ability to cover any terrain made it incredibly popular with armed forces from all over the world, with thousands being bought by Australia and New Zealand.

Fans of the Land Rover have been sharing feelings of sadness with some, including Simon Collins Secretary of the Warwickshire and West Midlands Land Rover Club, stating, “It’s the death of an icon”.

Thankfully, it is not a complete end for the greatest agricultural car in history, as Land Rover predicts that around 66 per cent of all of its vehicles are still fully operational, meaning there are still thousands on the road.


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