The Land Rover Defender now gains a V8 model, aptly named the Defender V8, and comes in two bodystyles – the 90 and the 110. The bent-eight petrol-powered version comes slightly more than a year after the latest-generation, aluminium monocoque-bodied 4×4 made its debut, and sits atop the Defender line-up in terms of performance.

The Defender V8 – in both 90 and 110 bodystyles – is identifiable through its V8 badging, quad exhaust pipes and available 22-inch wheels in a Satin Dark Grey finish, along with front brake calipers painted in Xenon Blue.

Power comes courtesy of the brand’s venerable 5.0 litre supercharged V8 petrol engine that makes 525 PS from 6,000 rpm to 6,500 rpm, and 625 Nm of torque from 2,500 rpm to 5,500 rpm.This yields performance figures of 0-100 km/h in 5.2 seconds for the Defender 90 V8 (5.4 seconds for the 110), while top speeds for both are identical at 240 km/h. Both versions feature a towing capability of 3,500 kg (750 kg unbraked).

Transmission continues to employ an eight-speed automatic gearbox with permanent AWD, and this V8 powertrain in particular features an electronic active rear differential with Yaw Controller for more agile and engaging handling, says Land Rover. This works with brake torque vectoring and traction control, while V8-specific tuning of the continuously variable damping is paired with stiffer suspension bushes and larger diameter, solid anti-roll bars.

Featuring air suspension at both ends, the Defender 90 V8 has approach, breakover and departure angles of 37.5, 31 and 40 degrees, respectively, and 37.5, 27.8 and 40 degrees for the Defender 110 V8. Wading depth for both continues to be 900 mm.

Interior specifications that mark out the Defender V8 from its more modestly engined siblings include Ebony Windsor leather with Dinamica and Robustec fabric accents, while the exposed Cross Car Beam is finished in satin black. Here, the steering wheel rim gets Alcantara trim with satin chrome shift paddles, along with with leather on the airbag housing and gear lever. V8 script appears on the illuminated tread plates.

Land Rover Defender V8 Carpathian Edition (second row)

The Defender V8 also gains a Carpathian Edition variant for a stealthy look, here finished exclusively in Carpathian Grey with contrasting Narvik Black for the roof, bonnet and tailgate, along with Satin Black for its towing eyes. The Carpathian Edition gets the Land Rover satin protective film that is polyurethane-based, offering protection against scratches in car parks as well as through off-road paths.

Further along the Defender line-up for the 2022 model year, wireless device charging is now available along with a signal booster for better network reception and Wi-Fi signal, says Land Rover. The latest Pivi Pro infotainment setup now is available with an optional 11.4-inch touchscreen that is 60% larger than the standard screen.

The range is joined by the XS Edition, which succeeds the well-received First Edition variant, says Land Rover. This is positioned above the SE trim level, and is available on both 90 and 110 bodystyles. This gets body-coloured cladding and lower wheel arches, with 20-inch diamond-turned alloy wheels in Satin Grey.

2022 Land Rover Defender XS Edition

The XS Edition doesn’t get the V8 powertrain, though. This instead gets two petrols and one diesel; the P400 mild-hybrid petrol, P400e plug-in hybrid and D250 mild-hybrid diesel. Four exterior colours are available for the XS Edition – Silicon Silver, Hakuba Silver, Gondwana Stone and Santorini Black.

Interior for the XS Edition features heated and 12-way electrically adjustable memory seats finished in Khaki Grained Leather, while the Cross Car Beam gets a light grey powder-coated finish.

As for the largest-engined modern Defender yet, the Defender V8 starts from GBP98,505 (RM562,914) for the Defender 90 V8 and from GBP101,150 (RM577,948) for the Defender 110 V8 in the United Kingdom.

2022 Land Rover Defender 110 V8

2022 Land Rover Defender 90 V8

2022 Land Rover Defender V8 detail, interior