Land Rover has opened UK order books for the Defender Hard Top, the commercial version of the new Defender 4×4.
Available in three-door, short-wheelbase Defender 90 and five-door, long-wheelbase Defender 110 bodystyles, Hard Top models eschew rear passenger seats for greater cargo capacity, while retaining the standard car’s off-road capabilities.
Hard Top prices start from £35,820 for the 90 and £43,012 for the 110. Both versions will launch with a choice of D200, D250 and D300 Ingenium diesel engines and intelligent four-wheel drive.
The Hard Top 90 has a total load capacity of 1355 litres, while the 110 can carry 2059 litres. The load area is separated from the passenger compartment by a full-height partition, with underfloor stowage designed to maximise cargo space. The commercial Defender is also able to tow up to 3500kg, and can be fitted with an optional third central jump seat for greater crew flexibility. Customers are also able to add their own bespoke signage using the blank side panels.
The Defender Hard Top revives the Hard Top name first used by the British brand in 1950 when a removable roof was introduced for the Series 1 Land Rover, and is being developed by Land Rover’s Special Vehicle Operations division.
“Land Rover Defenders have always thrived in the harshest environments,” SVO boss Michael van der Sande said. “Whether for commercial or recreational use, the Defender Hard Top is a true no-nonsense vehicle that will take whatever is thrown at it, or in it.”
Both 90 and 110 Hard Top models use independent coil-sprung suspension, with electronic air suspension optional on the larger model.
Both have 291mm ground clearance, while the 110 offers maximum approach, breakover and departure angles of 38deg, 28deg and 40deg respectively, along with a 900mm wading depth. The ability to ford deep water is further aided by a special Wade mode as part of the Terrain Response 2 system.
As with the standard Defender, the Hard Top features Jaguar Land Rover’s latest infotainment and driver assistance features, including the latest version of the firm’s Pivi Pro infotainment system. This will include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatability, and the ability to receive wireless software updates.
The system also works with a Land Rover smartphone app, which can be used by businesses to remotely check the location, fuel level and journey history of their vehicles.