Land Rover celebrated 68 years of history on Friday, 29 January 2016 as the last of the current Defenders was produced at its famous Solihull production facility.
To mark the occasion Land Rover invited more than 700 current and former Solihull employees involved in the production of Series Land Rover and Defender vehicles to see and drive some of the most important vehicles from its history, including the first pre-production ‘Huey’ Series I as well as the last vehicle off the production line, a Defender 90 Heritage Soft Top.
At the same time, Land Rover announced a new Heritage Restoration Programme, which will be based on the site of the existing Solihull production line. A team of experts, including some long serving Defender employees, will oversee the restoration of a number of Series Land Rovers sourced from across the globe. The first restored vehicles will go on sale in July 2016.
More than two million Series Land Rovers and Defenders have been built in Solihull, UK since 1948. What began as simply a line drawing in the sand has gone on to become one of the world’s most iconic 4x4s. In 2015, a unique milestone Defender – the ‘Defender 2 000 000’ sold for a record £400 000 (more than R9-million) – a far cry from the original £450 (around R10 300) the first Land Rover sold for at the 1948 Amsterdam Motor Show.