While the 2020 Land Rover Defender has not yet been crash-test by U.S. safety agencies such as NHTSA or IIHS, we do now have results for Europe’s NCAP crash tests and accident-avoidance tests, where the Defender earned the top rating of five stars.
The Defender model used for NCAP testing was the 110 variant with right-hand drive. The NCAP regimen includes several different crash tests: an offset front crash test into a moveable barrier with both the vehicle and the barrier traveling at 50 km/hr (31 mph), a front crash test into a full-width fixed barrier at 50 km/hr (31 mph), a side-impact crash test with a barrier traveling at 60 km/hr (37 mph) hitting the driver’s door, and a side-impact test where the car strikes a pole at 32 km/hr (20 mph). The Defender’s scores for the adult occupant and for a child occupant were both 85%.
Additionally, the agency looks at the severity of injuries of the vehicle striking a pedestrian, taking data for a pedestrian’s head hitting the hood, and their upper and lower leg being hit by the front of the vehicle. There is also testing of the vehicle’s automatic emergency braking system’s ability to avoiding hitting a pedestrian and a cyclist under various scenarios. The efficacy of active-safety systems for avoiding collisions with other vehicles is also tested. The Defender’s score for protecting pedestrians and cyclists was 71%. The driver assists scored 79%.
Results for several European-market cars were released together with those for the Defender, the most noteworthy of which was for the Honda E. The electric city car fared less well than the big Land Rover, garnering a score of four stars overall. In the same battery of test, the Honda E scored 76% for adult occupant protection, 82% for a child occupant, 62% for protecting pedestrians and cyclists, and 65% for its driver assists.