New 2022 Land Rover Defender 130 confirmed ahead of 31 May unveiling

Long-rumoured Land Rover Defender variant will come with increased length and seating for up to eight people.

We’ve already spied the forthcoming Land Rover Defender 130, and now Land Rover has confirmed the longest version of its Defender off-roader will be revealed in full on 31 May.

As can be just about made out in the official teaser image, the Land Rover Defender 130 will feature an extended body over the shorter 90 and 110 models of the reborn Defender, making it the largest and most spacious iteration to date.

It features the largest seating capacity of any current Defender, too. Whereas the Defender 90 and Defender 110 come as standard with five-seat layouts (two up front and a three-seat bench in the rear), the Defender 130 will have an additional row of seats that boosts the total to eight.

Based on the teaser image, and all-but-confirmed by the spy shots and patent drawings, it appears this extra seating capacity hasn’t been brought about by increasing the Defender’s wheelbase (the distance between the front and rear wheels). Instead, the Defender 130 will have a longer rear overhang than the Defender 110, with a larger side window that extends all the way to the back of the car.

Land Rover hasn’t confirmed how long the new Defender 130 will be, although it’s rumoured to be around 5.1 metres. This would make this range-topping Defender 130 model around 342mm longer than the Defender 110, and 227mm longer than one of its main rivals, the Mercedes-Benz G-Class.

Likewise, engine details are being kept under wraps until the 31 May unveiling, but we’d expect at least a majority of the engines available in the current Defender 90 and Defender 110 models will be offered on the Defender 130. As a result, expect the engine line-up to include a 296bhp mild-hybrid 3.0-litre twin-turbo inline-six diesel, a 394bhp mild-hybrid 3.0-litre turbocharged inline-six petrol and a 399bhp P400e plug-in hybrid model. The 518bhp 5.0-litre supercharged V8 used in Land Rover’s brawniest cars could also be available on the Defender 130.

Land Rover has confirmed the Defender 130 will be available to order as soon as it’s revealed in full, and don’t be surprised if the car is quite a bit pricier than the Defender 110 model. This is because the Defender 130 is likely to be positioned as the most luxurious versions of the current Defender, and may only be available in the highest trim levels. 

Despite the car’s increased length and interior space, the Defender 130 is unlikely to be available with a Hard Top counterpart aimed at commercial vehicle drivers. However, the stretched Defender 130 increases the chances of Land Rover launching a double-cab pick-up truck version of the Defender. Should it enter production, it would rival more dedicated trucks such as the Ford Ranger and forthcoming Volkswagen Amarok.

Read our full review of the Land Rover Defender here...

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