It's been a minute since we last saw a camouflaged Land Rover Defender SVX in public. But testing continues on this hardcore, high-powered off-roader, and this time around we caught something new in the grille. Actually, it's just above the grille, and it suggests this Defender is bound for the US.
Focus your gaze on a strip between the headlights. Some of the photos show a bit of orange, but a couple of images reveal three distinct orange squares. Those sure do look like amber marker lights, which are required in the United States for vehicles that are at least 80 inches (203 cm) wide. It's why you see them on rigs like the Ford Bronco Raptor, and seeing them here means the Defender SVX is indeed a bit wider than the standard model. That is, provided these lights are installed for legal use in the US and not just for testing purposes.
Gallery: Land Rover SVX Spy Photos
How much wider are we talking about? Specifics will be revealed when the camouflage comes off, but we know the Defender sits just under 80 inches wide in 90 and 110 guise. These new photos offer a clear look at the flared wings/fenders which, at a glance at least, appear much the same as the standard model. We surmised in previous SVX articles that there is a bit more girth to the SUV, so even if we're talking just a couple of extra inches, that would be enough to put the Defender into amber-marker territory.
As for the rest of the images, camouflage wrap with heavier coverings still hide changes to the face. Curiously, it looks like graffiti was spray painted onto the white mesh, though we have no idea if it was done deliberately by Land Rover folks as some kind of disguise. There's certainly no missing the sizeable BF Goodrich Traill Terrain tyres. We can also see suspension upgrades taking place within the wider wheel housings. The changes should add a bit of ground clearance, while under the bonnet, rumours abound that BMW's twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 will take station with upwards of 600 bhp.
We first learned of this hotter Defender in February 2023, so a full reveal can't be too far away. We could have full disclosure by the end of the year, or failing that, sometime in the first quarter of 2024 is likely.