It’s been over 20 years since the Camel Trophy was last held, but the name still carries a lot of weight. It conjures up images of beefed-up Land Rovers smashing through arduous terrain all over the world, from Madagascar to Mongolia and everywhere else in between you care to imagine.
Heritage is big business these days, so Land Rover Classic has decided it’s time to tap into that Camel Trophy magic. The result is the Defender Works V8 Trophy, a bastion of nostalgic off-road brilliance. And enormous expense.
The starting point is the Defender Works V8 Land Rover Classic launched a few years ago. These already heavily-reengineered late-model Defenders with their 400bhp 5.0-litre V8s have been enhanced further with unspecified suspension, steering and braking upgrades.
Of the 25 Land Rover Classic intends to make, there’ll be a healthy mix of 90 and 110 Station Wagon body styles. All of them get a front winch, expedition cage, roof rack and underbody armour, to ensure they’re ready to handle adventure with ease.
Completing the look is a quartet of spot lamps and ‘Eastnor Yellow’ paintwork for the body and the wheels. Not ‘Camel Yellow’, of course, because cigarette advertising is a bit of a no-no in 2021.
Launching these vehicles amid the backdrop of Covid-19 means Land Rover won’t be jetting its new owners off to Botswana or Papua New Guinea for mud-plugging adventures any time soon. The company does, however, plan to hold what’s described as an “exclusive three-day adventure” at Eastnor Castle, its home for off-road training. The buyers will drive their Defender for the first time here.
As you might remember, the standard V8 Works was incredibly expensive when it came out, with a starting price of £150,000. It should come as no surprise that the Trophy is spendier still, kicking off at £195,000 for the 90 wheelbase version.