Twisted electric Land Rover Defender conversion headed to the US
The recently-revived Land Rover Defender is not available with an electric powertrain, but a UK-based company is offering electric conversions of older models.
Twisted Automotive will offer a limited number of the conversions in North America. While the Defender was available in multiple body styles, this batch will all be soft-top 90 models—denoting its 90-inch wheelbase length—in reference to the 1990s-era North American Specification (NAS) Defender, the last version of the SUV sold in the United States before its 2020-model-year revival.
Twisted electric Land Rover Defender 90 interior
Two powertrain options are planned. The NAS-E model gets a single electric motor producing 214 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, while in the NAS-E Plus those figures are bumped to 320 hp and 309 lb-ft.
Both variants get a 60-kilowatt-hour battery pack, which should afford 200 miles of range, according to Twisted. The company also claims it will preserve the Defender's off-road capability with a step-down transfer case including high and low range, as well as suspension with custom-valved dampers.
Other upgrades include beefier brakes—with six-piston calipers in front and four-piston calipers in the rear—and a modern touchscreen infotainment system.
Twisted NAS-E electric Land Rover Defender
Pricing starts at $185,000 for the NAS-E, and $210,000 for the NAS-E Plus. The lead time for each build is estimated at nine months. Twisted is accepting refundable deposits, but doesn't plan to offer test drives until October at the earliest.
Even as EVs become more widely available, high-end electric conversions of vintage vehicles seem to be surging.
Alongside Twisted, a different company in the U.K. is converting exclusive Jaguar, Bentley, and Rolls-Royce vehicles.
And a California company's "crate" electric conversion kit started with a vintage Toyota Land Cruiser—one of the original Land Rover's main rivals.