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Thursday, August 27, 2015

British Company Turns Land Rover Defender into a 475-HP Super-SUV


Copyright © 2015 Bold Ride LLC.

One look at a Land Rover Defender is enough to deduce that these barebones off-road SUVs were not designed to carve country roads at any great speed. Rather, a bunch of workers in Defenders probably helped build said rural byways. 
Nevertheless, that hasn’t stopped JE MotorWorks, based in Coventry, England, from turning up the muscle on these aged workhorses. Enter the new JE Zulu2—a supercharged “Super Defender” that pummels the pavement with a tall 480 lb-ft of torque.


Sounds a bit loony? It is, but it follows a long history of high-performing Land Rovers to bare JE technology. JE MotorWorks was responsible for the competition-spec Rover V8s used in Land Rover’s Paris Dakar rally cars of the ‘80s. In 2008, JE launched the original Zulu Super Defender, which came packed to the gills with 450 horsepower. Scary.
The model’s second coming turns those horsepower digits higher still thanks to a fair bit of tweaking to the supercharged 4.7-liter V8 underneath the Land Rover Defender hood, which now summons 475-horsepower…a sizable level-up in performance compared to the Landie’s standard issue 2.2-liter turbodiesel.


The Zulu2 isn’t all about outright power, though. The iconic off-roader also fits chompy six-piston AP Racing brakes, athletic Fox Racing shocks, a set of grippy tires on 18-inch alloy wheels, a Quaife limited-slip differential, and a six-speed automatic transmission to help divvy that power to the Defender’s four-wheel drive system.

Visually, the Super Defenders receive subtle upgrades on the outside, enough to suggest there’s something out of the normal here, which include twin exhaust shoots, a sleek front grille, and LED exterior lighting. The interior has been finely retrofitted with sumptuous leather, which finds itself on the seats, door cards, passenger dashboard, and center console.

Like the looks and the performance? Good, but you’ll be lucky to net one. JE MotorWorks says they’ll only build 25 Zulu2 Super Defenders.