Skip to main content
< Enquire

Farewell To A Safari Legend

Farewell To A Safari Legend

"Beyond Fashion" 

The Land Rover Defender has an esteemed heritage, and with good reason. The Defender we know and love today is a vehicle that has assumed legendary status the world over. This is because since Land Rover's inception 68 years ago in 1947, little has changed to the design. Fail proof, tried and tested, easy to adapt to the user's requirements and complete with an uncanny ability to go practically anywhere. These key ingredients are why it is likely to see these trusty vehicles on your next safari in Africa, working away tirelessly in the heat, taking you closer to your game sightings, negotiating one rut and pothole at a time. Despite these fine attributes though, the plucky ox-like workhorse is now in its twilight days. 

2015 is a sad year for Land Rover fans as it sees the end of production for the iconic Defender. 

(Did you know? The first vehicle seen by 1/3 of the world's population was a Land Rover)

An ageless matriarch still roaming wild

Fans of this old girl, who still trundles with pride across the African savannah, snorkel held high, beyond the fickle whims of fashions back in the city, will be bitterly disappointed when the last Defender rolls off the production line in December. Yes, there is a replacement on the way scheduled for a 2018 launch, but one has to ask if it will still captivate the imagination quite like the current design?

The vehicle as we know it today, in design terms, is evolution in a Darwinian form. The battle hardened design (quite literally, as it's favoured by military personnel the world over) varies little from the "Series 1 Land Rover" that Maurice Wilks famously sketched out in the Welsh sand roughly 70 years ago. Taking the basic design of a WWII Willy's Jeep as inspiration, he proved the naysayers wrong by developing arguably the most successful vehicle ever to go into production, and certainly one of the most iconic.  

We at Sandgrouse Travel & Expeditions are huge fans of Land Rover, and of course the iconic Defender. In fact we choose to use these rugged vehicles ourselves for our own trips to remote corners of Europe. The Defender is after all a symbol of true adventure, encapsulating the spirit of exploration and a go-anywhere attitude. So here's hoping that the replacement continues to fly the well-earned flag with pride and distinction.

Send your best photographs of Land Rover Defender's to or Tweet us @SandgrouseTeam and please add your stories to the comments below. 

(An original Land Rover poster advert from 1960 here at the Sandgrouse Travel & Expeditions' offices).

(A Sandgrouse Travel & Expeditions Land Rover Defender 90 stops for a break in the field)

Leave a comment


Allie says: April 15th, 2015 at 4:01 am

You can definitely see your enthusiasm within the work you write. The arena hopes for even more passionate writers like you who are not afraid to say how they believe. All the time follow your heart.

Articles & Blog

Welcome to The Sandgrouse Traveller, your travel and adventure resource.

Sit back and enjoy browsing our archives of luxury and adventure travel stories. Here you will find articles on everything from adventure in the frozen Arctic to reviews of top lodges in the heart of the African savannah, all at the touch of a finger on your tablet or smart phone and with no subscription fee.

Cannot find what you're looking for? Simply use our 'search' function to find personal travel stories and tips based on first-hand experience, interviews with top local guides and international adventurers as well as reviews on the best safari lodges, luxury hotels and holiday destinations.




Never miss an update

Sign up to recieve an email whenever we post something new.