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Land Rover Defender Challenge racer debuts at Autosport

Off-road rally enthusiasts will be excited to hear a new Land Rover Defender Challenge racer is on the way, developed by renowned motorsport partner Bowler. The Defender Challenge makes it debut at the 2014 Autosport International event in the UK.

2014 Bowler Land Rover Defender Challenge

Based on the short wheelbase Land Rover Defender 90, the Challenge is stripped out and rebuilt so it’s ready for plenty of rugged rally action. It features a bespoke Bowler Motorsport suspension system developed in part by Bilstein, a custom bodykit with protective plating, and lightweight 18-inch racing wheels.

It also comes with a fully prepared racing cockpit with an MSA-approved roll cage and fire extinguisher, harness seat belts, and a pair of racing bucket seats to keep everyone secure.

Under the bonnet sits a modified version of the factory 2.2-litre turbo-diesel. With a number of tweaks the engine produces 127kW of power and 450Nm of torque, sent through a six-speed manual transmission.

The road-legal vehicle will be eligible to compete in the 2014 ‘Defender Challenge by Bowler’ series, which is regarded as a feeder to the Dakar rally, as well as other rally-raid competitions and events.

Prices for the beast start at £50,000 (approximately AU$92,635), with the Defender Challenge entry kicking off from £10,000 (around AU$18,527).

Brett is the editor and founder of PerformanceDrive. He's obsessed with driving, having played with Matchbox cars until he was tall enough to drive a real one. After initially working as a mechanic, Brett earned a degree in journalism and entered media as an editorial assistant at Top Gear Australia magazine. He then worked at CarAdvice.com.au. His dream is to live next door to the Nurburgring in Germany.