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Land Rover Defender 90 delayed to early 2021

The arrival of Land Rover's smaller Defender has been pushed back to early in 2021, and COVID-19 is to blame.

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Keen on a three-door Defender? You’re going to have to be patient.

Land Rover Australia has confirmed the smaller Defender 90 will be arriving in Australia next year, rather than in October 2020 as initially planned.

“The Defender 110 initial production was halted just two months after it started. That obviously has caused a backlog of orders and with a reduced rate of production in the Nitra [Slovakia] factory due to COVID safe work practices, they are behind schedule,” a Jaguar Land Rover spokesperson told CarExpert.

“Due to this effort on catching back Defender 110 build, the Defender 90 production will now start later and we expect to see our first Defender 90s in Australia early in 2021.”

Although the 90 has been pushed back, the larger Defender 110 has officially touched down in Australia.

Jaguar Land Rover has confirmed the car has “already started arriving in each of the ports” around Australia, while Facebook page Melbourne Car Spotters has already posted pictures of a white Defender 110 on Victorian streets.

At 4323mm long with a 2587mm wheelbase, the Defender 90 is 435mm shorter than the 110 with a 435mm shorter wheelbase.

Under the skin is a new chassis D7x (yes, the x is for extreme). Land Rover says it’s three times stiffer than a conventional body-on-frame chassis.

Permanent all-wheel drive is standard, backed by a two-speed transfer case and locking centre differential.

Tick a few options boxes and there’s also a locking rear differential. A variation of Land Rover’s Terrain Response electronics is standard, allowing owners to toggle through a number of preset drive modes or to tailor the car to their tastes.

Set up in its most rugged configuration, the Defender has 291mm of ground clearance, a 900mm wading depth, a 38-degree approach angle, a 28-degree breakover angle, and a 40-degree departure angle.

Two suspension options are available: an independent air suspension, and a coil-sprung setup. The air suspension can be raised by 145mm and lowered by 50mm, with up to 500mm of articulation.

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Scott Collie
Scott Collie

Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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