The three-door version of the reimagined 4x4 costs from £40,290, with orders being accepted now.
Deliveries are expected to begin this summer, following on from the arrival of the first customer Defender 110s, due to arrive with buyers from this spring.
Land Rover says it has seen “unprecedented” demand for the long-wheelbase model since the car’s unveiling at last year’s Frankfurt Motor Show. The 110 is already available to order, priced from £45,240.
Later this year commercial versions of both derivatives will go on sale, priced from “around” £35,000.
Finbar McFall, Land Rover global product marketing director, said: “We have experienced unprecedented demand for New Defender 110 and the official introduction of Defender 90 is sure to boost interest. As the family grows to include an efficient plug-in hybrid powertrain and commercial derivatives later this year, we look forward to continuing this success.”
More than 1.2 million people have configured a Defender on Land Rover’s website since it went live, with more than half opting for one of the add-on Accessory Packs. Perhaps disappointingly for a car being heralded for its unrivalled off-road abilities, the most popular choice has been the urban pack, which focuses on shiny body trim and bigger wheels rather than more rugged add-ons.
Despite customers’ road-biased selections, the company says that the new Defender is the most capable Land Rover ever made and offers 21st century connectivity with “unstoppable” off-road performance.
Although it now uses a monocoque chassis rather than body-on-frame construction of the old Defender, the new model offers the expected 4x4 drivetrain, with permanent four-wheel-drive, an eight-speed automatic gearbox, two-speed transfer box, locking centre differential, active locking rear differential and all-independent suspension with passive coil or active air suspension.
The Defender also features the latest multi-mode Terrain Response system for managing the four-wheel-drive and matching it to the conditions and, for the first time, lets experienced off-road drivers configure the setup to suit their specific needs.
The £40,290 entry price will get buyers a 2.0-litre diesel Defender with 197bhp and 317lb/ft. Standard equipment includes steel wheels; LED lights; dual-zone climate control; auto lights and wipers; heated seats, mirrors and windscreen and a 10-inch touchscreen featuring Land Rover’s new Pivo Pro media/navigation system.
Beyond that, there are five other trim levels - Defender, S, SE, HSE, First Edition (for one year only) and top of the range Defender X - offering the full-spectrum of advanced off-road systems, fancier interior features and finishes, plus up to 22-inch alloys.