Why have you poured two hay bales in the back of a brand new defender, and why is there a dog in the this? Is my dog isn’t it completely obvious alex get in? I will explain everything: okay, hello, cutie let’s go for a drive alex. As you know, i was raised in south west britain, rural england, and this. This is my vision of the land of a defender, loaded up with hay, bales and a sheepdog. So i thought that’s exactly what we should do with it. So i’ve got to point out from the outset that i don’t really get the defender thing like i understand that they look cool. I really like the way that they look, and i understand also that they’re unstoppable off road, but i am not much of an off roader and i did drive one on the road once and it was not very good. I didn’t think i just don’t quite get the appeal. I need to need some convincing today: okay, good well that’s. What today is all about is finding out exactly what the new defender does well, can it honor the old one, but can it also break into new territory and appeal to a more modern today audience the question i’m looking to answer in this video is not just If the defender can live up to my romantic rural vision, but if it can also hold its own in a more modern and fearsomely competitive market on the road skip ahead, if you want to join us for a walk around or a blast on the blacktop or Stay with us to slip around in this muddy field, so this is essentially the first all new defender in something crazy like 37 years, and this car is very different, it’s, a big radical departure in terms of philosophy we don’t have you know, body on frame construction.
We don’t, have, you, know solid, axles, front and rear. This is an all new car and what version are we in today we’re in the d300se? Yes it’s, not quite the top spec. There is an hse but we’re one down from that, the se and it’s d300, which means it gets the all new ingenium three liter straight six diesel and it’s, absolutely fantastic we’re. Also in the 110, the long wheelbase you can get the 90.. So what kind of money are we talking? 93 000 for this one here, which actually sounds like a lot of car for your cash? It really does options. Obviously, you can blow that right out of the water um, but generally because this is the essay you get quite a lot of equipment in it. For you, speaking of options, this roof i’m, assuming is an option because it’s a four thousand dollar option: oh wow, but it is super cool because it’s, a folding canvas roof and for the full safari effect it concertinas to the back, and you can pop your head Out, wow, that’s, really cool. Also really cool. Is this cabin? I think it is a perfect balance of still feeling a little bit luxury it’s, quite comfortable, but also heavy on the utility, because it feels like this car could you know, go a million million miles and it wouldn’t break yeah. I think that’s definitely going for whether it does it in practice. We’Ll we will see, but the materials are really good, like the steering wheel feels like it’s been 3d printed, or something and there’s this lovely wood trim down here.
I don’t know if it even is wood. What is it i don’t know if it’s real wood or if it’s plastic, but it has a nice texture to it, and i think it looks awesome. I love these exposed. You know screw heads. I also like that you get exposed body color in the doors. I think that’s really cool and there is loads of places to put things like you can lose your whole arm in the center there huge door, pockets loads, more down here, sort of flying, buttresses, style, storage, it’s, really really, spacious, panic handles everywhere. Clearly they knew i’d. Be driving so good, also two usb ports down here, different sizes and you get a 12 volt socket as well so and usb ports again in the center of the dash there it’s a lot of thought and function. That’S gone into this cabin things like little sun blinds behind the rear view, mirror yeah and speaking of rear view mirrors. Look at this digital so that when you can’t see what’s behind you, because some idiot put hay bales on the back seat, you’ve got a digital version to look from actually at the roof line, so it’s nice and high up, oh that’s, really cool, actually yeah. So this car is all about how it performs off road it’s got to get that right to be a true defender right, yes, and we are in a field dan, so there’s, a few muddy puddles and some big mounds that we can climb over so let’s go And try and do that lovely idea, we’re not going to try and do a full 4×4 test on this we’ve done that before we know and established that this is very good off road.
If you want to watch that video, you can see it right here. Click the pop out banner, but we couldn’t be in a muddy field without trying just a little bit off road could be obviously i’m, not much of an off roader. But the facts on this car, which talk to what it should be able to do, are pretty impressive. So all new platform, you know it’s done away with the body on frame solid axles of the old defender, which is a big shift in philosophy for this car. But it has all aluminium architecture. Air suspension is standard in australia on all defenders, so that allows you to raise and lower the ride height as you see fit. Yes, so much equipment and technology just from the basic stuff, like locking differentials of which this has two four wheel drive. Obviously, but then it takes a really interesting technological approach. So as we come into some off road sections, look at this, i can do the invisible bonnet mode which uses the car’s cameras from all around it to create a virtually sort of ghostly image of the car, and you can see what’s going underneath the vehicle wow That’S actually really handy, because i read about this and i’d heard about it, but now that i’ve seen it in practice, i can only really start to appreciate the benefits yeah exactly so when we are trying to avoid some obstacles and mounds like this. This kind of technology really comes into its own, no guesswork anymore.
You know exactly what’s going on yeah another important thing to point out the short overhangs this car has not only make it look really cool. You know that tyres pushed out to the corner of the car yeah, but big benefit when you’re off roading as well approach, angle, 38, degrees, departure, angle, 40 degrees, which is very impressive, yeah and tons of ground clearance as well. And if you don’t have enough, you just hit that button there and you raise the suspension up for even more it’s, absolutely brilliant. We don’t have any streams in this field. Unfortunately, but if we did, we could rest easy in the knowledge that we could wade through 900 mils of water weighed sensing. How clever is that, if you were very terrible at waiting – and you got stuck you’d – be safe in the knowledge that your car can sit there for an hour, because the electronics in this car have been rated to sit fully submerged in water for up to an Hour and still be okay, if you need to put this car in water so most of up to now something has gone horribly wrong. Yes, please not do that today. Okay, all right i’ll, try, so there’s tons of styling and and really lifestyle focused things on the inside of this cabin loads of technology. We know it’s good off road. I think the next thing for us to do see if that styling translates and continues on the outside as well Music alex.
Obviously one of the key things with the 2021 defender is the way it looked. It had to look like the original has it worked. I think they’ve done an amazing job really because it does pay homage to all the old when it’s still boxy it’s still identifiably a defender, but they’ve modernized it in such a really clever way and the level of detail when you walk around the car like we’re About to is really impressive, i’m a huge fan. Not only do i like it, though i think everyone else likes it. It turns so many heads when you’re out on the road. I don’t know whether people look at it because they don’t like it or they like it, either way it’s getting good attention. I love these headlights. This is the se, so it gets that illuminated ring around there, but yeah. A good mix of the old new. The detailing is great. I really love these checker plate features on the bonnet, but they’re, not real metal, so don’t don’t stand on those okay. One thing i’m, a bit iffy on is this 110 decal? Do you like it? I do but that’s because i’m showy, but you can just peel it off or probably pay them 100 bucks and they’ll. Take it off for you. I think i’d also have this color. When you described it to me on the phone, you said like brown, but that’s kind of like bronze and for this car, i think it works really well totally different shades of mud, it’s, perfect um 20 inch alloy wheels.
Of course, you can get this car with the cool steel wheels that look really agricultural and original, but this car is so lifestyle. I think there are 170 different accessories you can have for this car, including a roof rack that you can put like a two man tent on i’m, a bit disappointed, we’re, not camping in this field. Actually, and also you can put you know – dog boxes on the side for storage, and i think that actually looks really really cool yeah, proportionally it’s great it’s, a big car we’re on mud and snow tyres, so another statement of its off road intent there. I love it. I think it’s working really really well. My favorite part, my favorite part of the whole design is this tail light arrangement. I think it’s, so cool the square lights and also these indicator repeaters off to the side. I think that’s awesome more sharp design from the designer jerry mcgovern full size spare. I love that also what i love about that is the rear parking sensors accommodate for that. Oh it’s, nice, clever, yeah, very clever. The level of detail, though, as i mentioned before, is really intense all the way down to this checker plate design on the boot floor, cool and there are two spare seats tucked away under there. So this is a seven seater yeah it’s the car that keeps on giving if you do happen, to sit in those two rear seats.
You’Ve got your own air conditioning fan, speed control over there lots of storage cup holders it’s, actually probably not a bad place to be. I know i think the whole thing looks really really cool and would be just as happy bombing around the field here, as it would be. You know, pulling up out the front of a really cool nightclub. My only slight concern with it dan it’s trying really hard to be cool. Is it trying too hard to be cool, i think possibly to the right audience? No, i think if you love the old defender you’re, going to love this one, because it’s unmistakably a defender still people who don’t understand what the old defender is probably aren’t, going to get it and they’re going to look at it in a weird way. As clearly people do so, i think to the right audience: no it’s not trying too hard at all okay, so we know that it’s, it looks cool, it’s, really good in a muddy field like this. Probably the most important question, though, is what’s it like to drive on the road let’s find out. Yes, alex it’s, no secret, that the previous generation defender was a bit of a dog on the road, sorry charlie. But this one sets out to be altogether much more satisfying to drive onroad, and it has to because, if it’s going to attract a much bigger audience and gain the attention it’s trying it needs to do everything well, including on road.
First, impressions are very positive as well: let’s start with the engine we mentioned it earlier, but i’ve got a bit of a soft spot for six cylinder diesel engines, i’ve got to say absolutely and this one is a good one. It’S really good to the point where it should actually be worrying: the existing champion of the 600 diesel world, bmw yeah. This is the ingenium three liter straight six turbo diesel, but it’s kind of a turban, supercharger it’s got an electric supercharger and a conventional turbo. The electric supercharger runs off a 48 volt subsystem, which also creates the hybrid system for the engine as well it’s, very clever, but in practice, what it means is you get a beautiful, smooth unit that revs cleanly all the way to redline. It even sounds good. I think it sounds great. It sounds really good, like almost not like a diesel it’s got that unmistakable six cylinder kind of bark, it’s lovely yeah, so you can buy other engines in the defender range. But if you can stretch to this engine, i would definitely recommend it because it is a beauty it’s paired to an eight speed automatic again does a very good job kicks down when you want it to and otherwise it’s a very smooth and cooperative little companion. There really strong drivetrain bolted to that four wheel, drive system that we’ve already experienced so that gets a big tick there yeah absolutely the rest of the ride and handling package.
I’M surprised actually it’s very good, equally impressive, so out on roads like this we’re going to find some damage and some undulating bits and off camber it’s handled it all really really nicely and of course that’s, because this whole architecture is lighter, stiffer the chassis is far More like a road car than perhaps some of its competitors that’s it. The first thing you notice is that there’s, none of that vagueness or waftiness that you get from a lot of other dedicated four by fours. This feels more like a big posh suv and again you find that in the steering there’s none of that off center vagueness that you get in a lot of the competitors in this segment, the steering itself is quite slow but again like off center. You instantly get that sense of connection and the rate of response is accurate and nice and linear it’s good, given what this car can do off road, i would forgive it a lot more sins on road, but we don’t have to because it’s actually doing everything really Very well yeah, absolutely like through tight, turns like this. There is a bit of body roll, but the way that it resists roll and manages its weight because we do have quite a bit of weight here again is quite good there’s, nothing that makes you unnerved at the wheel to push it a little bit. It’S very confidence, inspiring vision out, is also a contributing factor to that, because we’ve got a lot of glass here and you feel confident in placing the car, which is important because it is it’s a big bus we’re in den it’s huge.
But i never felt like it was that big, you get all the nice sense of it being big confidence sitting high up without sort of dreading taking into the city and worrying that it’s going to cause you problem partly to do with all the good electronics and All the cameras all around it, but also it’s, just a it’s, a car that handles its heft, really really well yeah and we’re noticing that now, because this road we’re on is quite gnarly, it’s also got a few bumps that are offset. So it tries to get the chassis in this bit of offset walking business, but head toss. Um is really nicely contained and when you do hit sort of sharper bumps we’re on big 20 inch wheels but they’re nicely isolated. The ride compromise is again pretty good. It’S. Very quiet in here, in fact, funnily enough, the only noise you get is through that fabric roof, but even that’s, not intrusive, it’s, just it’s, brilliant and, as you said earlier, we’re running on mud and snow tyres which have proven themselves off road already, they’re, not making A huge amount of noise – it really is like ticking all the boxes. That refinement thing is a huge one, because you know cars that are very capable off road. Very utilitarian. Often the sacrifice you make is for that refinement. When you’re going for a big long drive, there can be a bit fatiguing to drive, but this car it’s super quiet in here i could happily drive not just from like melbourne to sydney, but i can melbourne to diamond in this thing and you’d be completely fresh When you jumped out the other side, we definitely need to own a property somewhere far away if you’re going to have a car test to really make the most of it.
I do have a couple of small criticisms and it is they’re both in the footwell yeah. The pedals, the pedal, feel and calibration is a little bit odd. The brake is the first one that you noticed yeah, so it initially, it feels like it’s going to be really firm and progressive, which it is, and then you push through it, and it goes in this weird squashy zone. It does almost like a sort of hybrid or an ev, and then, if you keep going and break really hard, you end up in a sort of firm zone, again it’s very strange it’s. I don’t hate it, but it just takes quite a bit of getting used. That’S, what i was about to say: it’s, not bad per se, it’s, just it’s, just different it’s something you’ve got to acclimatize to the first thing. That i noticed also is that the throttle pedal is quite long when you’re driving it on the road and getting around car parks. You’Ve got to feed in quite a bit more throttle percentage than you initially think. A potential downside to that is sometimes you give it too much throttle yeah and then all of a sudden, the big diesel wakes up, comes on boost and you get a bit jerky. So again, that can take a little bit of getting used to. It does improve when you put the gearbox over into sport mode, but you’re not really going to be doing that when you’re parking, the car or driving around the shopping center.
Are you beyond that i’m? Actually struggling to find anything, i don’t love about this car and i was honestly expecting to be nowhere near as impressed and i was a cynic. I didn’t get the whole defender thing, but i think the driving experience isn’t, you know so much a different suburb to that old defender i drove years ago as it is a different universe. This car is really polished. It has the refinement all of the good qualities to go with all of its um ability off road as well, and i was the opposite. I was worried that this car wasn’t gon na honor the defender nameplate, having known all those defenders i drove in my youth long time ago, but actually i’ve been so surprised. Not only does it do the off road thing beautifully. Well, it now enters new territory and is going to genuinely appeal to a much broader audience because it does the day to day and on road, so well as well so i’m a convert well done defender frankly alex. I am delighted with the defender. Oh, no, i know the real dan’s coming out. I didn’t think i was gon na love it as much as i did i’m totally delighted. It can come home to the farm any day. Where’S my dog gone. Oh yeah, jolly. What did you do seriously? Yeah hi? If you liked this video, please give us a like and subscribe to our channel yeah subscribe, and if you want to watch some more videos there’s a couple of them.