The original Land Rover Defender silhouette lives on: Land Rover grants us a licence to use iconic Defender shape
Posted on 4 November 2020
Land Rover has given us permission to produce vehicles using the classic Defender shape in the next phase of development for our all-terrain performance cars and rally raid vehicles.
This new agreement paves the way for us to develop a new family of high-performance models, beginning with a project codenamed ‘CSP 575’ – a new road-going vehicle with our own rally-proven CSP high-strength steel chassis, aluminium alloy Defender 110 Station Wagon body panels and Land Rover’s 575PS Supercharged V8. This project will supplement the ongoing motorsport developments that are the foundation of our past, present and future plans.
Initial renders of the planned 4×4 provide a glimpse of the rally-derived model, which will be the first new Bowler since 2016. Full details will be revealed early next year, but the competition-inspired off-roader promises to combine potent performance and motorsport-honed durability in a classic Defender 110 Station Wagon shape capable of accommodating four passengers.
Founded in 1985, Bowler pioneered the production of dedicated off-road competition cars in the UK. Jaguar Land Rover acquired Bowler at the end of 2019 and our expert team has been developing a number of exciting projects as part of Special Vehicle Operations.
Our customers are already benefiting from this relationship as Land Rover SV engineers are helping develop Bowler vehicles and using their engineering expertise to test Bowler products at Special Vehicle Operations’ world-class facilities.
Land Rover’s decision to issue us with a licence agreement to build vehicles using the classic Defender shape is a natural progression of this relationship and the new station wagon project represents a unique undertaking – integrating the technology, components and engineering excellence underpinning Land Rover’s SV products with our motorsport expertise and experience.
Michael van der Sande, Managing Director, Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations, said: “We’re excited to announce the first major project since our acquisition of Bowler. The ‘CSP 575’ will combine Supercharged V8 performance and four-seat practicality with Bowler’s rally raid-proven CSP platform, broadening the appeal of the brand. This high-performance road-going model will sit alongside Bowler’s evolving range of rally raid models, which continue to enjoy success in the world’s toughest motorsport events.”
The new model will be manufactured in very small quantities at our headquarters in Derbyshire, UK, by the same talented engineers and technicians who produce our competition 4x4s. With global appeal but targeted at customers in the UK, select European and overseas markets, indicative pricing for the new model is around £200,000 in the UK.
Calum McKechnie, General Manager, Bowler Motors, said: “The Bowler name has stood for innovation for 35 years. The licence agreement to produce vehicles with the classic Defender shape gives us a unique opportunity. We’re excited to combine our motorsport experience with the expertise available from Special Vehicle Operations to produce a thrilling competition-inspired Defender 110 Station Wagon for the road.”
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