- James Bond stunt driver Mark Higgins is returning to rally raid in a special Defender tweaked by Bowler.
- Land Rover has commissioned this special one-off Defender 90 to celebrate 60 years of James Bond.
- The off-road vehicle specialist has been featured in the 007 films since 1983's Octopussy.
- For motoring news, go to Wheels24
Did you know that 2022 marks the 60th anniversary of the James Bond film franchise? Dr. No was released on 5 October 1962, and since 1983, Land Rover products have been featured in these classic motion pictures. The Range Rover Rapport Huntsman was the first Landy to land a starring role in the series in 1983's Octopussy.
To commemorate sixty years of 007 espionage and its vehicles' impact regarding pop culture, Land Rover has built a one-of-a-kind Defender 90 Special Edition that James Bond stunt driver Mark Higgins will drive. He'll be using it to compete in a unique leg of the 2022 Bowler Defender Challenge in Wales this weekend.
It's built to competition specification
According to Land Rover's spokespeople, the competition-ready Bond Defender you see in these pictures is based on a production version of the Defender 90.
It's powered by a 221kW P300 Ingenium turbo-petrol engine that punches power and torque to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox with low range.
It boasts a host of safety modifications, including a full roll cage, enhanced cooling for the engine and transmission, a sports exhaust and a new rear roof spoiler.
As Land Rover does, additional bespoke enhancements include strengthened 18-inch Bowler wheels with all-terrain tyres and a custom suspension design with modified subframes, new springs, and unique turrets for increased stiffness.
If the Defender wasn't hardy enough already, they've ensured its durability won't come into question during competition play.
James Bond stunt driving professional Mark Higgins says: "The Defender is a tough and capable vehicle when it leaves the production line, and I've seen it perform really challenging stunts while on the set of No Time To Die. With the race-ready enhancements made by the Bowler team and with Claire by my side, we are confident we can have a great result."
Higgins is a three-time British Rally Champion and veteran Bond stunt driver. He makes his return to rallying with co-driver Claire Williams. Higgins has been at the wheel in four James Bond films – Quantum of Solace, Skyfall, Spectre and No Time to Die.
While we can only drool at the car, as it will not be built as a production vehicle, nothing stops you from talking to Land Rover dealers locally about creating something similar with the new V8 version of the Defender.
You could easily add this black and gold Bond livery and unique 007 60th logo on its roof and sides if you ask (and pay for it); as they say, they can offer genuinely bespoke builds through the Special Vehicle Operations department.
If you'd like to see some legendary Land Rovers in action in the James Bond Films, here's a list of movies to binge on:
- Octopussy (1983) – Range Rover Rapport Huntsman
- A View to A Kill (1985) – Range Rover
- The Living Daylights (1987) – Land Rover Series III, Land Rover Series III armoured, Range Rover
- The World Is Not Enough (1999) – Land Rover Defender 90 custom
- Die Another Day (2002) – Range Rover L322
- Casino Royale (2006) – Range Rover Sport
- Quantum of Solace (2008)– Ranger Rover Sport
- Skyfall (2012) – Land Rover Defender, Land Rover Discovery 4, Range Rover L322 Series III
- SPECTRE (2015) – Land Rover Defender Bigfoot, Land Rover Discovery Sport, Range Rover
- No Time To Die (2021) – Land Rover Defender 2020, Land Rover Series III, Range Rover Series I, Range Rover Sport SVR
KEEP UP TO DATE with the latest motoring news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter, 'LET'S DRIVE'.