PHEV Becomes Most Powerful Land Rover Defender

The first plug-in hybrid Land Rover Defender is also the most powerful in the new line-up.

New Defender P400e uses a powertrain combining a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine and 105kW electric motor, claims a total output of 400bhp with CO2 emissions of just 74g/km and combined economy of 85.3mpg (71.03mpg US). It can run in all-electric mode with zero tailpipe emissions for up to 27 miles including off-road.

Only available with the 110 body design, it claims a 0-62mph time of 5.6 seconds and will reach a top speed of 130mph. Yet it is a practical 4×4 performer and can tow up to 6,600lbs and carries a roof load of 370lbs on the move or 660lbs stationary.

Standard on all Defender P400e models are 20-inch alloy wheels, electronic air suspension and a charging port located on the left-hand side of the vehicle. It comes with a Mode 3 charging cable as standard, while an optional Mode 2 cable is also available. The Mode 3 charging cable enables charging to 80% in two hours, while charging via a Mode 2 cable will take around seven hours to charge to 80%. Using a 50kW rapid charger, the P400e charges to 80% capacity in 30 minutes.

Diesel still dominates the Defender’s range with the new six-cylinder Ingenium diesel engine available in three power outputs of D200, D250 and D300, all of which are Eu6d-Final and RDE2 compliant and employing mild hybrid technology.

Sitting at the top of the range, the D300 delivers 296bhp and 479ft-lbs of torque, providing a 0-62mph time of 6.7 seconds for the Defender 90. The MHEV technology contributes to enhanced fuel economy through an efficient Stop/Start system which cuts the engine at a standstill, as well as recuperating energy normally lost under braking or decelerating. This energy is then sent back into the battery pack and can be redeployed later. A key benefit of MHEV is that this energy is used when accelerating, delivering faster responses for greater performance.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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