Land Rover isn’t capping the Defender range with its supercharged V8-powered P525, after all.
Motor Trend reports the company will offer an even more powerful V8 flagship wearing the vaunted SVR nameplate.
A BMW-sourced twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8, long rumoured to be introduced to the Defender line, could provide the SVR’s motivation.
According to Motor Trend, the Defender SVR will be available in both 90 and 110 body styles and is set for a launch in 2022 during the Northern Hemisphere spring.
Even in its lower state of tune, with 390kW and 750Nm, the 4.4-litre V8 would put the Defender within reach of the 430kW/850Nm Mercedes-AMG G63.
The Defender P525’s blown 5.0-litre V8 puts out 386kW of power and 625Nm of torque. It also uses a ZF-sourced eight-speed torque-converter automatic transmission like the V8 BMWs.
In addition to a more powerful engine, the SVR will reportedly receive a raft of other updates over the P525 V8 like more aggressive design elements and unique suspension tuning.
The Range Rover Sport SVR features numerous changes over less powerful Range Rover Sport models, for example. These include a unique bonnet, retuned suspension, an active exhaust, and grippier front sport seats.
As for how much more a Defender SVR would cost, we can again look to the Range Rover Sport for an idea.
The P525 is priced from $177,634 before on-road costs in HSE Dynamic trim, with the SVR – using a higher-output version of the supercharged 5.0-litre – priced at $246,270 before on-roads.
The Defender P525 is currently priced at $200,540 before on-roads for the three-door 90 and $205,500 in the five-door 110.
For context, a Mercedes-AMG G63 is $299,000 before on-roads.
The introduction of an SVR model will continue to maintain consumer interest in the Defender line, which remains high despite semiconductor-related production delays.
Rumours of Land Rover models receiving BMW V8 engines have swirled since the two companies entered an agreement in 2019 to share electrification technology. This led to speculation the tie-up could expand to include V8 engines.
Jaguar Land Rover’s decision to bring production of its supercharged V8 in-house in 2020 forestalled this, however it’s unlikely it’ll meet tougher emissions standards.
The BMW V8 is expected to also be made available in the upcoming fifth-generation flagship Range Rover. There’s precedent for this, with BMW V8 engines previously used in the third-generation Range Rover.