Land Rover Defender named World Car Design of the Year

The Land Rover Defender has been named 2021 World Car Design of the Year at the annual World Car Awards recently. It’s the third time Land Rover has claimed the coveted prize following previous wins for Range Rover Velar (2018) and Range Rover Evoque (2012) and is the latest in a number of global awards for the rugged 4×4.

The World Car Design of the Year prize recognises the most outstanding new car of the last 12 months and rewards vehicles demonstrating the highest standards of technical innovation and designand that push established boundaries.

Jaguar Land Rover Chief Creative Officer Prof Gerry McGovern OBE said, “New Defender is influenced by its past but is not constrained by it and we are delighted it has been honoured with this award. Our vision was to create a 21st Century Defender by pushing the boundaries of engineering, technology and design while retaining its renowned DNA and off-road capability. The result is a compelling 4×4 that resonates with customers on an emotional level.”

This year, all the contenders competing in the other four award categories were eligible for the World Car Design of the Year prize. A panel of seven automotive design experts Gernot Bracht (Germany – Pforzheim Design School), Ian Callum (United Kingdom – Director of Design, CALLUM), Gert Hildebrand (Germany – Owner Hildebrand-Design), Patrick le Quément (France – Designer and President of the Strategy Committee – The Sustainable Design School), Tom Matano (USA – Academy of Art University, Former Head of Design – Mazda), Victor Nacif (USA – Chief Creative Officer, Brojure.com and Design instructor, NewSchool of Architecture and Design) and Shiro Nakamura (Japan – CEO, Shiro Nakamura Design Associates Inc), reviewed the contenders to establish a shortlist of recommendations for the jurors’ final vote, made by the 93 international journalists that comprise the jury panel.

Land Rover’s designers re-envisioned familiar Defender trademarks, giving the 4×4 a purposeful upright stance and Alpine light windows in the roof, while retaining the side-hinged rear tailgate and externally mounted spare wheel that make the original so identifiable. The stripped-back personality of the original Defender has been embraced inside, where structural elements and fixings usually hidden from view have been exposed, with the emphasis on simplicity and practicality.

Underpinned by Land Rover’s strong D7x aluminium platform – the brand’s stiffest ever body structure – advanced all-terrain technologies and state-of-the-art powertrains deliver unstoppable capability.Its carefully honed handling delivers a rewarding drive and first-class comfort across all terrains, and the experts at Euro NCAP awarded the Defender a maximum five-star safety rating.

A choice of advanced Ingenium petrol and cleaner diesel engines ensure Defender has the power, control and efficiency for any environment, while a Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) powertrain provides silent EV-only progress of up to 27 miles.

The Land Rover Defender. PHOTO: INDERA MOTORS