At ECD, we love an off-roader that’s fully equipped and ready to tackle any challenge on the road ahead. If you’re anything like us, you do too. Being ready to tackle the challenges on the road ahead includes having the ability to pull heavy loads at a moment’s notice. Luckily for Land Rover off-roading enthusiasts, the Vintage Defender doesn’t skimp on towing capabilities either. With a custom vintage Defender, you’re not just ready to tackle rugged terrains. You’re also ready to pull boats, campers, and more on your way there. Here’s everything you need to know about Defender towing capacity and capability.
The iconic Land Rover brand has long been synonymous with off-roading. In 1948, the Rover Company created the Land Rover brand to market their utilitarian 4WD off-roader. While the Land Rover brand has certainly evolved over the last six-and-a-half decades, Land Rovers are still revered for their off-roading capabilities.
Of course, to be a great off-roader, you also need the towing capacity and capabilities to back it up. Luckily, for Land Rover enthusiasts, Defender towing capacity and capability hold their own when compared to similar sport utility vehicles.
If you want to tow a boat or camper with your vintage Defender, you definitely can. However, it’s important to remember that a vehicle’s towing ability is based on a number of factors, from the weight of the vehicle itself to the vehicle engine and how much horsepower and torque it can produce.
While some refer to a general rule of thumb that one hp is equivalent to 25 lbs of towing capacity, torque actually plays a greater role in a vehicle’s towing capabilities than hp does. Torque is a rotating force produced by an engine’s crankshaft, and torque production and towing capacity go hand-in-hand. As a Defender engine produces more torque, its towing capacity increases linearly.
Looking at the Defender towing capacity and capability of the D90, D110, and D130, the Defender 110 and Defender 130 will generally have an easy time towing larger loads compared to the Defender 90, as the vehicles themselves weigh more. The towing capacity of a D90 is generally up to 7,716 lbs, while the Defender 110 or Defender 130 can generally handle towing capacities of up to 8,201 lbs.
At ECD, every Custom Defender can be upgraded with a tow package, which includes additional heavy-duty shocks or springs, stronger breaks, an upgraded battery, and a transmission cooler. Project Deep Blue, a Custom D130 restoration project, features a 565-horsepower 6.2L LS3 V8 engine and the upgraded tow package option.
If you want even more Defender towing capacity and capability, you’ll want to go with an upgraded engine option in your vintage Defender to increase your Land Rover’s hp and torque capabilities. Luckily, when working with ECD on your Defender build, you have a variety of engine option upgrades to choose from. Some of the most powerful powerhouse engine upgrades for vintage Defenders are the Chevrolet LS3, LC9, and LT4.
The Chevrolet LS3 engine powers restored Defenders with a modern 6-speed performance engine that possesses an impressive 430 hp and 400 lb-ft at 5000 rpm of torque. You can also opt to have a Chevrolet LS3 engine with a whopping 565 hp installed in your build to increase your Defender towing capacity and capability even more.
The Chevrolet LC9 engine is another great modern engine option upgrade for restored Defenders. The LC9 is an 8-cylinder, 5.3L engine that produces 320 hp and 348 lb-ft at 4400 rpm of torque. Project Mandalorian is a Custom D110 ECD build powered by an LC9 engine. This D110 provides a stealth look out on the road with its black-on-black finish.
The Chevrolet LT4 is GM 6.2L supercharged direct-injection, small-block V8 engine that produces an impressive 640 hp and 630 lb-ft at 6600 rpm of torque. Project Defiance is a Custom D110 that sports the LT4 engine. This powerful D110 is painted in full gloss Causeway Gray with black accents all around.
Whether you’re looking to build a Defender with some serious towing capabilities or just want a luxury Defender to cruise the open highways, the team at ECD can turn your Defender dreams into reality. At ECD, we build every restoration project to our client’s exact specifications.
To get a better sense of what features and capabilities you might want to incorporate into your Defender build, you can check out our online Defender builder to test out some colors, styles, and special features. When you’re ready to put the pedal to the metal on your build project, contact us to discuss the full scope of the build process.
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© 2022 ECD Automotive Design. All images are the property of ECD Auto Design and cannot be used without our consent. E.C.D. Automotive Design is not affiliated, associated, authorized, endorsed by, or in any way officially connected with Jaguar Land Rover Limited, or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates, including Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC. DEFENDER and RANGE ROVER are registered trademarks of Jaguar Land Rover Limited. We build restored defenders, range rover classic’s, and jaguar etypes.