Jaguar Land Rover moves Defender production to Slovakia
00:33, May 2, 2019
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As the prototypes clear the 1.2 lakh testing kilometres mark, they will be put into action at the Borana Conservancy in Kenya, as part of special real-world testing - towing vehicles, wading through water and ferrying supplies.
Putting the new Defender on the road is a bright spot for the British carmaker as it struggles with fallout from the UK's decision to leave the European Union and slumping sales in China.
More than two million Defenders were made in the West Midlands but the new model will be put together at the company's £1 billion plant in Nitra, Slovakia, which opened in October 2018.
Land Rover plans to reveal the redesigned Defender in September as a 2020 model.
British carmaker Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) will move the assembly of its Land Rover Defender to its plant in Slovakia to make room for newer models at its factory in Britain, the company said on Tuesday. The Defender has already seen the extremes, starting from 50 degree heat of the desert to 40 degree below zero cold of the Arctic, and even altitudes of up to 10,000 ft of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado.
Workers set up the booth for British auto manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover's Jaguar brand inside the National Exhibition and Convention Center, the venue for the upcoming China International Import Expo (CIIE), in Shanghai, China October 28, 2018.
Land Rover has kept details of the new vehicle to a minimum, apart from saying that it will bring "unparalleled breadth of capability and new levels of comfort and driveability to the Defender family". On-road dynamics were "honed" at the Nürburgring while all-terrain credentials were tested on the muddy roads of Eastnor, the rocky trails of Moab in Utah, and the sand dunes of Dubai. "We have to create a new Defender for a new generation", he said.
The new Land Rover Defender will soon complete its final phase of field testing with the Tusk Trust, on location in Kenya. Fuel economy figures haven't been announced, but the mild hybrid system should net a noticeable improvement in fuel consumption compared to the outgoing V6. It is due to be unveiled this year, probably at the Frankfurt motor show.
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