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Land Rover Defender 110 X-Dynamic HSE D300 2023 Review

Defender D300 X Dynamic HSE  – Regular listeners will know how much I enjoy driving the new Defender. Its one of my favourite cars.

A few weeks ago I had the X Dynamic HSE D300 model. Top spec with my favourite engine. I wasn’t disappointed.

The model I drove was priced from around $120,000 plus options to take it up to around $134,609 plus the usual costs. Now this isn’t something I ever though I would be saying, but against what else you can get as a large 4WD wagon, that’s excellent value.

The Defender drives on road like a premium SUV, almost like a Range Rover Sport. Off road it will match it with the mighty the best 4WDs around.

Inside the levels of comfort and luxury are more like a premium SUV, not a robust 4WD.

The HSE model we drove had the towing pack, Family pack and air suspension options as well as the off road pack and some really cool 20 inch dark alloys.

The Defender also fits me like no other 4WD or car. Its like it was made specifically for me with my driver position possibly the best I have ever sat in.

The in line six cylinder diesel turbo engine has 221kW of power and a hefty 650Nm of torque from as low as 1500rpm. This makes for relaxed cruising as well as excellent control off road and effortless towing.

This is a Motoring Minute

I’m Rob Fraser


Land Rover Defender X-Dynamic HSE D300 Video

More Land Rover Defender X Dynamic HSE D300 thoughts

Defender HSE D300 final thoughts

As I have mentioned on many occasions the Defender is my favourite 4WD. It just pips the LandCruiser 300 series. That’s saying something as I’ve owned Cruisers in the past.

The D300 is my pick of the engine choices. It has more than enough power and torque for every situation. Its smooth and economical as well

The Defender rides and handles on road like a Range Rover Sport. Off road its matches it with the best and makes 4WD work ridiculously easy. Sand driving is effortless, forest trails are like a smooth dirt road and the rough stuff is covered without fuss.

The Defender is currently the best value 4WD on the market.

What is good?

  • Ride and handling
  • 4WD and towing ability
  • Interior comfort

What is not so good?

  • The windscreen washers dribble water out of the wipers
  • Steering wheel controls have slow reaction time
  • Prefer a straight transmission lever than the push/pull style

Some more Defender articles  

Also look at:

Large 4WD Wagons have reduced in numbers over the years.

Buyers could look at Toyota LandCruiser GR Sport, Lexus LX 500D, Jeep Wrangler RubiconINEOS Grenadier, Nissan Patrol TI-L or Land Rover Discovery.

Land Rover Defender 


110 X Dynamic HSE D300

Model Price $120,310 MLP*
Engine 3.0L inline 6 Cyl Turbo Diesel Euro 6
Drivetrain 8 Sp Sports AT Dual range 4WD
Power 220kW @ 4,000rpm
Torque 650Nm @ 1,500-2,500rpm
Safety Five star ANCAP (tested Aug 2020)
0-100kmh / Top Speed 7.0 secs / 191 kmh
CO2 Emissions 207 g/km
Economy ADR 7.9L/100km / 89L capacity
Economy on test 9.2L/100k
Max Range 1309km
Servicing TBA
Warranty 5yr/ Unlimited km
Road side Assist 5Yr. conditional roadside assist

*MLP Includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of options. Some features mentioned in the article are options. RDAP means Recommended Drive Away Price (without options but including all other charges)

Overall Rating    


Behind the Wheel 9
Comfort 9
Equipment 9
Performance 9
Ride and Handling 9
Practicality 9
Fit for Purpose 10
AWD/Towing Capability* 10  (4WD 5/5 Towing 5/5 )
Technology/connectivity 9
Value for Money 9

*Towing and AWD capability is measured against similar vehicles in the same class.


 X Dynamic HSE D300

Overall Length 5018mm
Wheelbase 3022mm
Width 2008mm
Height 1967mm
Wheels 20×8.5 Alloy
Tyres 255/60 R20
Max ground clearance Up to 228mm ( standard suspension)
Wading Depth 850mm
Approach 31.2 degrees
Rampover 22.6 degrees
Departure angle 37.8 degrees
Turning Circle KTK 12.84m
Boot cargo min 1075L
Boot cargo Max 2380L
Boot width between  arches 1160mm
Kerb Weight 2405kg
Payload (kg) 794kg
GVM (kg) 3200kg
GCM 5850kg
Towing Capacity 3500kg
Tow Ball rating 350kg

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