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Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender

Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender Twisted shows off electric NAS-E California Defender
Modifying firm, Twisted creates NAS-E California Defender.

Land Rover hasn't made one yet. Ineos isn't making one. So it's down to a Yorkshire-based tuning company to give the world the first fully-electric Defender.

NAS-E California Defender

Twisted has been making modified and upgraded Defenders for years, taking the basic, agricultural Land Rover and adding such things as luxurious interiors, sinister styling kits and, occasionally, 6.2-litre Chevrolet V8 engines. Now though, with its finger firmly on the zeitgeist button, Twisted is showing off its all-electric Defender.

The models being shown first are for the North American market, hence the NAS-E name, and called the Californian models. Based on the canvas-roof Defender 90, they're badged Malibu, Yosemite and Tahoe with each place name having a unique colour - Yellow for Malibu (because beach); Yosemite gets green (for the forests of the national park); while Tahoe is blue, for the famous lake.

Bruce Riggs, COO, Twisted North America said: "As the world moves steadily toward mass electrification, the Californian market has been missing a uniquely stylish electric 4x4 option that can stand out at the beach, off-road and at stoplights with a level of exclusivity and prestige that can only come from the timeless British Defender form. With colour schemes reflecting the natural beauty of California, a removable soft top shape to fully live the elements, advanced electric powertrain engineering exclusive to Twisted, zero-emission power, practical battery range and luxuriously modern interior touches, the Twisted NAS-E is the ultimate expression of the American coastal lifestyle."

60kWh battery, 300km range

While these three models will be built in strictly limited numbers - just 30 will be made - you will be able to order the same electric conversion for any existing Defender model, and yes they'll be available on this side of the Atlantic too, through Twisted's base in the UK.

So what are you getting? Well, the battery conversion rips out the diesel engine (obviously) and inserts 60kWh battery pack. That powers a 215hp motor which also brings 380Nm of torque to the party - significant improvements on the old Defender 2.2 diesel. That's not all, though. Twisted, being a tuning firm at heart, unsurprisingly offers a major NAS-E Plus upgrade to the electric motor which brings it to 320hp and 420Nm of torque. That's enough to shove this brick of a car up to 100km/h in around 8.5secs.

The battery has an on-board 22kW charging system for rapid top-ups, and can be fast-charged too, of course. Range? Twisted says that it should do a realistic 300km on a full charge. There's a driving mode selector too, with three modes: Sport, Eco and Off-road.

Massively revised suspension

As well as the powertrain, Twisted has upped the Defenders's under-the-skin tech count, with six-piston front brakes and four-piston rear brakes, hard-use RS29 brake pads, ABS and TCS for increased traction, plus a two-speed transmission that allows for high and low ratio for serious off-roading. The suspension gets custom-valved dampers and Twisted says that its modifications "dramatically reduce understeer."

Inside, for the California models, there's luxury three-abreast seating, a touchscreen infotainment system, a rear-view camera, and an exclusive Twisted eight-channel audio system.

Each of the California models will take around nine months to build and - wait for it - cost from USD$185,000 for the standard version, and USD$210,000 for the more powerful NAS-E Plus version. UK-based conversions start at a slightly more reasonable GBP£69,950.



Published on July 23, 2020
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