Land Rover's New Defender Octa is Bonkers in Almost Every Way Possible

Chris Teague
by Chris Teague

What’s a competent off-roader if you can’t also do 0-60 mph in less than four seconds? That’s the approach Land Rover is taking with the new Defender Octa, which offers tremendous power and performance driving modes that make it an over-the-top special edition.

How does 626 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque from a twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 sound? It sounds like 3.8 seconds to 60 mph, and what will likely be a memorable trip up the Goodwood hill is what it sounds like. Land Rover’s new Octa Edition One Defender will debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, bringing its adaptive suspension and exclusive styling touches with plenty of carbon fiber.

We’re talking about a speedy SUV here, but the Octa is still quite capable off-road. It offers the deepest wading depth of any Defender, at 3.3 feet, and it has a widened track with a 2.7-inch broader stance than the standard SUV. Land Rover said it conducted 13,960 tests to prove the Defender’s high-speed off-road durability.

The Octa also gets an exclusive Octa mode, which includes an off-road launch setting, and when combined with the lowest traction control settings, it offers optimal traction on loose surfaces.

Inside, Land Rover offers a pair of color choices, including khaki and black, but burnt sienna semi-aniline leather is standard. The Octa also gets performance seats with heavier bolstering and “wellness programs” that help with relaxation.

If you’re hoping to get ahold of a new Octa, get ready to pay $152,000 to start, and the Edition One starts at $167,800. The real prices will likely be higher than that, as buyers often add thousands in options and upgrades.

[Images: Land Rover. Note: Some images are of current models, not the Octa.]

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Chris Teague
Chris Teague

Chris grew up in, under, and around cars, but took the long way around to becoming an automotive writer. After a career in technology consulting and a trip through business school, Chris began writing about the automotive industry as a way to reconnect with his passion and get behind the wheel of a new car every week. He focuses on taking complex industry stories and making them digestible by any reader. Just don’t expect him to stay away from high-mileage Porsches.

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2 of 10 comments
  • Zipper69 Zipper69 on Jul 06, 2024
    Is there a big enough market for an extreme sports performance off-roader?It seems such a niche, I wonder this is just a loss-leader, garnering publicity and press coverage but selling few...
  • Redapple2 Redapple2 on Jul 09, 2024
    Rubbish cars for moneyed obnoxious people.
  • FreedMike Not much to look at, but these were sweet to drive.
  • EBFlex Ford finally making a good decision although they should shut down their EV operations and investment all together. Why lose that money too?
  • Mike Lol. This is the king of suvs. And its made by GM.Why is everyone trashing it?Top of its its class for a quarter century.
  • Frank Drove past there last week, plant has a huge poster of a bronco on the outside. I was thinking "Is that where they build the new broncos?" I know they use to make the Edge and that other mundane SUV there but I believe both have been canned.
  • CanadaCraig Toyota saw this coming. So good for them for being courageous enough to say, "Wait a minute. Let's not rush into anything."