It's not a long drive, but there's just enough time to get Hammond excited about the Defender.
Richard Hammond is a big Land Rover fan, including previously owning a 1985 Range Rover and a heavily modified Defender 110, and he now takes a look at the new Defender on video. It's a brief experience with the new model, but the Hamster seems cautiously optimistic about what he sees.
Gallery: Land Rover Defender 2020MY
Land Rover's goal for the new Defender is to be "respectful of the past but not harnessed by it," according to Hammond. This is a great way to describe the new model's appearance. There's a definite family resemblance, but the latest vehicle looks thoroughly modern.
The goal also applies to the 2020 Defender's driving manners. Rather than the old body-on-frame chassis, the new one has a monocoque that is significantly stiffer. The new Defender 110 comes standard with an air suspension providing an adaptive ride height that can change depending on the conditions. There are 85 ECUs, which contributes to the model's internal nickname of the "all-terrain supercomputer."
Like Motor1.com's Brandon Turkus, Hammond is a big fan of the Defender's front bench seat that lets the centre console tilt upward to create room for three people. As an especially cool touch, the rearview mirror switches to the camera view when the centre seat is in place.
Without extensive seat time, Hammond doesn't go so far as to render a verdict on the new Defender. It's clear that the vehicle gets him excited, though.
The Defender's order books are open now starting at £45,240 for the four-door 110 variant.