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The new Defender is being featured in more and more teasers by Land Rover to generate more buzz. It’s not your typical shadowy teaser image as the adjacent photo gallery was shot in Africa where a near-production prototype had to go through some serious hurdles in Kenya. Together with British non-profit organization Tusk Trust, the resurrected off-road SUV was used across the 14,000-hectare Borana Conservancy by wildlife managers to support conservation operations. Approximately two and a half years have passed since the last old-school Defender was built at the factory in Solihull, and we’re now just a few months away from its completely new successor. Land Rover will allegedly unveil the next-gen model in September and will have the iconic off-roader on sale soon. Like its predecessor, the revamped Defender will spawn a great variety of derivatives, from barebones off-roaders to luxurious and powerful versions in a bid to lure in a wider clientele. We’ve spotted it multiple times in short- and long-wheelbase configurations, but we’ve also been hearing rumors of a pickup truck with a single cab setup among other versions.
This appears to be the next Land Rover Discovery, hews closely to the design of the Discovery Vision Concept of 2014. In fact, you can match up almost every detail on this prototype to the concept. The SUV retains the subtle bulge that starts above the C-pillar as a tribute to the old Discovery, LR3 and LR4. The character line running from the fender vent to the edge of the taillight, the semi-floating roof design and the shape of the lights and front grille vents are all carried over from the concept as well. Outside of small proportional changes, this Discovery is a dead-ringer for its show-car predecessor. Clearly, the days of tall, upright, and boxy are numbered at Land Rover. Our spy photographer also expects this new Discovery to trade its current body-on-frame chassis for an aluminum unibody. This wouldn't be surprising as the Discovery Sport also uses an unibody chassis with a mix of aluminum and high-strength steel. Expect the future Discovery to make its debut at the end of this year or sometime in 2017 with a supercharged gasoline 3.0-liter V6 and possibly a diesel 3.0-liter V6. Rumors suggest that the current supercharged V6 may be replaced by a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six from Ford, and a plug-in hybrid may also become an option somewhere down the line.