Despite rumors that Land Rover‘s iconic Defender might go the way of the dodo, increasingly there have been signs that the company is indeed committed to its hard-core offering, as two concepts revealed at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show suggest.
The D100 and roofless D100 Sport (pictured above), are essentially styling exercises to showcase which direction the Defender could go. Indeed not only do they embody some of the design features found on the company’s current offerings (the new Range Rover Evoque comes to mind), they also sport some really traditional Landie features (such as a three-passenger front seat).
Yet as off-roaders designed and conceived for use in the 21st century, there’s some hi-tech stuff going on too; materials from luxury yachts, private jets, even spacecraft are employed in their construction, as is technology for self-cleaning and ‘healing’ of the exterior paint.
An ‘intelligent’ next generation Terrain Response system and even a ‘Wade Aid’ feature designed to assess the depth of potential crossings and advise the driver of the appropriate speed when ‘fording’ hint at just some of the capabilities the next generation Defender could have.
Other features it will likely sport include four-cylinder gas and diesel engines with hybrid and even plug-in capability, plus probably an eight-speed automatic transmission.
The D100 and its Sport counterpart are a far cry from the V-8 powered five-speed Defender 90 that was sold in North America back in the 1990s, but from the looks of things, hint that when it finally does arrive, the next generation hard-core Landie, could easily prove to be just as much fun.