BARCELONA -- The new Land Rover Defender has been designed to attract both owners of the recently discontinued model as well as a new generation of buyers, said the brand's design boss, Gerry McGovern.
The new Defender is "not far away," McGovern said. He declined to give more detailed timing.
"The anticipation is incredible," McGovern told the audience at the Automotive News Europe Congress in Barcelona on Wednesday.
UK media reports say the new Defender will be launched in 2018.
The Defender was axed last year after a production run that extended more than 60 years. Its rugged, boxy design and off-road capabilities made it an icon.
McGovern said the new model's appearance will keep an emotional connection to the previous generation but it will not just be a "facsimile" updated to meet modern legislation. To win new buyers, the SUV must appeal to a new generation, he said.