History of the LAND ROVER Defender 110 Phase 2
Besides the new badges displaying the "Defender" designation, the main changes relate to the suspension and drivetrain. A new engine, the 200 Tdi (Turbo Diesel Intercooled), previously deployed in the Discovery, replaces the 2.5TD. The "200" refers to the engine's maximum torque in English metric units. It is derived from the earlier 2.5D and TD engines but has undergone substantial revisions, including the addition of a Bosch mechanical direct injection system. Braking is handled by a combination of discs and drums, but for late 1993 models (VIN LA), a set of four disc brakes becomes standard, along with new axles featuring 24-spline shafts and flat hubs. Models equipped with the reinforced suspension option for heavy loads receive ventilated front discs and a rear differential with four pinions (standard on the V8 models). Another minor change involves improved elbow room for front passengers, achieved by shifting the seats toward the center. In the same year, the front bumper loses the hole for the crank handle, and for the 1993 model year, the windshield hinges are removed (except for the soft-top versions). The body style remains largely unchanged, but a few alterations are made to enhance the appeal of the Defender.
The 300 Tdi is an evolution of the 200Tdi. Its name no longer reflects its maximum torque, as with its predecessor, but is driven by marketing, aiming to signify an advancement. Additionally, this engine is the third iteration of the base engine with the code name Geminin, the first being the 200Tdi and the second a military engine. Apart from the management of the EGR valve, which many users remove, it is the last "non-electronic" engine. It allows for the possibility of directly adjusting some injection settings, relatively easily.
Pearlescent and metallic colors are optional for the "Station Wagon" models in 1996. These same models receive the option, starting in 1997, of a body-colored roof instead of the traditional white roof.
In 1998, the 4.0-liter V8 gasoline engine and the automatic transmission from the Defender NAS 90 are offered on the limited edition commemorating the fiftieth anniversary: the Defender 90 50th anniversary.
The TD5 is the final engine produced by Land Rover. Even though it was marketed during the BMW era, it was entirely designed and manufactured by Land Rover.
The 1999 Defender models introduced several new features: a redesigned interior, electronic instrumentation, an enhanced version of the R380 gearbox, the LT230Q transfer case, and improved sound insulation. Among the notable new options were ABS combined with electronic traction control (ETC) and air conditioning with a heat exchanger mounted in the grille.
For most markets, the key feature of this model compared to the previous one was the TD5 engine. This 2.5-liter inline-five-cylinder turbocharged Diesel engine with an intercooler introduced injector pump technology and replaced the previous 300 Tdi engine, although it was slightly less powerful than the version used in the Discovery Series 2 introduced at the same time. In the 2001 model year, a TD5 engine with a modified electronic control unit (ECU) was introduced to prevent the engine from stalling at low revs. The 2002 model received a single-piece rear window, central door locking, and a modified central fascia (which optionally housed power window controls).
The usual range of body types was maintained (pick-up, canvas-top, hardtop, Station Wagon). To boost sales, Land Rover introduced several special editions. Only the Tomb Raider edition was available worldwide, while the details of the others varied by country. For example, France saw the introduction of the Hawaii series, a Monte Carlo blue convertible available in 2001.
One of the strengths of this vehicle is the wide range of chassis/body configurations available. In fact, three wheelbases are available:
90" is the short model.
110" is the long model.
130" is the very long model, available only as a commercial vehicle.
The three designations (90, 110, and 130) roughly correspond to the wheelbase length expressed in inches (1 inch = 25.4 mm). The 90 has a 92.9-inch wheelbase, the 110 has a 110-inch wheelbase, and the 130 has a 127-inch wheelbase (Land Rover 127 was the commercial name until the introduction of the Defender name).
Different body styles exist, with each wheelbase only available with a subset of the available body styles: canvas-top (soft top), hardtop (hard top), hardtop with rear seats (Station Wagon), single-cab pickup (Simple Cab), high-capacity single-cab pickup (Simple Cab HCPU), double-cab pickup (Crew Cab), high-capacity double-cab pickup (Crew Cab HCPU), all with progressive trim levels (E, S, and SE).
The 90 comes in 2-door pickup, 2-door soft top, 2-door hardtop, and 2-door Station Wagon versions. The 110 is available in 2-door hardtop, 4-door Station Wagon, 2-door single-cab pickup (HCPU), and 4-door double-cab pickup (Crew Cab) versions. The 130 comes in double-cab pickup with canvas (Crew Cab HCPU) and chassis-cab (Simple Cab) versions. You can recognize TD5 Defenders by their rectangular and flat wing repeaters, and additionally, the engine hood no longer has interior reinforcements, theoretically no longer allowing for a spare wheel to be mounted on top.
Upgrades & Evolutions during the LAND ROVER Defender 110 Phase 2 production