The original Land Rover Defender returns as a Bowler CSP 575

This 423kW, road-going station-wagon will be available in 2021.

The original Land Rover Defender will live on, albeit as a specialised, high-performance variant from motorsports specialists Bowler.

Owned by Land Rover and operating under SVO (Special Vehicles Operations), Bowler has been given special licensing permission to use the so-called Defender ‘silhouette’, which dates directly back to the original Land Rover of 1948.

Bowler are England-based motorsports specialists, who have been making off-road racing vehicles based on Land Rovers and Range Rovers since 1985.

While they are well known in certain enthusiast and motorsport circles, Bowler hasn’t developed a new vehicle since 2016. Touted to be available in 2021, the Bowler CSP-575 concept is the first product of collaboration between Bowler and SVO.

VIDEO: Land Rover Defender off-road review

Bowler CSP 575

The original Land Rover shape has been otherwise discontinued by Land Rover, with an all-new Defender sporting a look and dimensions only inspired by its predecessor.

However, a new competitor from Ineos Automotive is coming to Australia, and is vocally inspired by the outgoing Land Rover Defender.

Unlike the original Defender, the Bowler will shirk slow-moving, load-lugging capability, and chases high-speed performance and capability instead. And it won’t be cheap, with prices expected to be around $365,200 (£200,000).

There’s room for four on-board, and the Defender’s woeful roll-over credentials have been improved with an internal roll cage.

Bowler CSP 575

Under the bonnet is a 5.0-litre supercharged petrol V8 making 423kW. And while it looks just like an old Defender, that iconic body sits atop a bespoke high-strength chassis of Bowler’s own design.

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.”

Mr van der Sande continues: “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.”

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