-->

New Defender News

DieselRanger

Well-known member
Hydrogen is a pipe dream.

- Despite the claims, real-world FCEVs are significant emitters of oxides of nitrogen because atmospheric air, which is what the FCEV takes in to react with the pure hydrogen, is mostly nitrogen. Oxygen likes Hydrogen better, but unless there's a significant excess of hydrogen available (i.e., running "rich" in the FCEV, reducing efficiency), the excess oxygen will also combine with nitrogen inside the fuel cell.
- over 90% of industrial hydrogen comes from fossil fuel sources (coal gasification, steam reforming of natural gas, or partial oxidation of methane), and releases massive amounts of carbon, benzine, and other toxic compounds as a byproduct; those products must be captured and sequestered or otherwise used/converted to other industrial products which massively impacts cost and efficiency.
- Electrolysis like you did in your high school chemistry class is great....for high school chemistry class. It takes massive amounts of electricity to split water into hydrogen and oxygen, at the immediate cost of precious water which landlocked states have very little of. So you have to generate that electricity first, then transmit it through wires to an electrolysis plant on the coastline, where you can run electricity through giant tanks of sea water to produce hydrogen, then you have to either transport that gaseous hydrogen through pipelines or compress it to something like 70,000 psi until it liquefies, and then drive it on a truck or move it on a train to the point of consumption. You also have to do something with the other things in seawater - tritium, deuterium, salts, and other minerals. Today, the "other minerals" are dumped back into the ocean, increasing salinity in coastal waters.

There's no free lunch.
 
Last edited:

SkiWill

New member
Hydrogen is a pipe dream.

- Despite the claims, real-world FCEVs are significant emitters of oxides of nitrogen because atmospheric air, which is what the FCEV takes in to react with the pure hydrogen, is mostly nitrogen. Oxygen likes Hydrogen better, but unless there's a significant excess of hydrogen available (i.e., running "rich" in the FCEV, reducing efficiency), the excess oxygen will also combine with nitrogen inside the fuel cell.
- over 90% of industrial hydrogen comes from fossil fuel sources (coal gasification, steam reforming of natural gas, or partial oxidation of methane), and releases massive amounts of carbon, benzine, and other toxic compounds as a byproduct; those products must be captured and sequestered or otherwise used/converted to other industrial products which massively impacts cost and efficiency.
- Electrolysis like you did in your high school chemistry class is great....for high school chemistry class. It takes massive amounts of electricity to split water into hydrogen and oxygen, at the immediate cost of precious water which landlocked states have very little of. So you have to generate that electricity first, then transmit it through wires to an electrolysis plant on the coastline, where you can run electricity through giant tanks of sea water to produce hydrogen, then you have to either transport that gaseous hydrogen through pipelines or compress it to something like 70,000 psi until it liquefies, and then drive it on a truck or move it on a train to the point of consumption. You also have to do something with the other things in seawater - tritium, deuterium, salts, and other minerals. Today, the "other minerals" are dumped back into the ocean, increasing salinity in coastal waters.

There's no free lunch.
I agree that there's no such thing as a free lunch, but some of the other assertions are not quite accurate. First, H2 combustion produces more NOx than methane combustion. However, fuel cells do not use combustion, so NOx is essentially eliminated and they can be more thermodynamically efficient: https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/923761

That said, manufacturing H2 is typically done in the petrochemical industry with steam methane reformation. Air Products has successfully capture the CO2 from their La Porte facility for years, so H2 can be produced with low carbon intensity and abatement of emissions. That has also been proven as well.

You're absolutely right about electrolyzers though. They are massive energy hogs and at best 75% efficient and only available at relatively small scale. Due to mentioned issues with storage and transportation of the most leak prone gas in the universe, the costs of distribution and production of H2 will be high.

Will this tradeoff be worth the ability to refuel a vehicle in a similar timeframe as a gasoline or diesel powered vehicle vs. the charging time required for an electric vehicle? I'm not sure, but, I sure would like to at least have the option to choose between H2 and electric depending on which one looks to be the best fit for my needs.
 

DieselRanger

Well-known member
I agree that there's no such thing as a free lunch, but some of the other assertions are not quite accurate. First, H2 combustion produces more NOx than methane combustion. However, fuel cells do not use combustion, so NOx is essentially eliminated and they can be more thermodynamically efficient: https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/923761

That said, manufacturing H2 is typically done in the petrochemical industry with steam methane reformation. Air Products has successfully capture the CO2 from their La Porte facility for years, so H2 can be produced with low carbon intensity and abatement of emissions. That has also been proven as well.

You're absolutely right about electrolyzers though. They are massive energy hogs and at best 75% efficient and only available at relatively small scale. Due to mentioned issues with storage and transportation of the most leak prone gas in the universe, the costs of distribution and production of H2 will be high.

Will this tradeoff be worth the ability to refuel a vehicle in a similar timeframe as a gasoline or diesel powered vehicle vs. the charging time required for an electric vehicle? I'm not sure, but, I sure would like to at least have the option to choose between H2 and electric depending on which one looks to be the best fit for my needs.
Long way from hydrogen as a viable fuel source. True regarding combustion, good catch. There are some who believe hydrogen combustion engines are simply a tank and line swap away from green energy, and would be a bridge to HFCEVs, and that's just not the case, but shouldn't conflate HFCEV with Hydrogen ICE.

Hydrogen fuel cells are right now at best 60% electrically efficient, vs. 40-42% net efficiency for light duty diesels, with diesel fuel being a fraction of the cost and offering as much as six times the range at the same tank volume. Land Rover's D300 MHEV is likely the pinnacle of diesel evolution for vehicle engines, if only because Volkswagen's malfeasance has resulted in governments banning diesel passenger vehicles in the future. Direct-drive BEVs are 70%+ net efficient today, with new battery tech and gearing like Porsche does (with Tesla getting on that bandwagon), we could see electrical efficiency approach 90% within ten years, with net efficiency close to or exceeding 80% depending on many factors like tires, road quality, gearing, and of course weather.

Supply chain efficiency is a thing, as is cost at the point of unit purchase. An efficient Hydrogen supply chain will take as long or longer to build and cost vastly more than it did to get the petroleum supply chain to the consumer to the degree we have today, and as such will remain an insurmountable barrier to ubiquitous adoption, never mind the vehicle design impacts of having to accommodate a Hydrogen tank rated to 70,000+ psi and sized to hold enough liquefied Hydrogen for 300+ miles of range, with the attendant collision safety that will have to come with that. Electricity is already there...just a matter of installing charging points and developing faster-charging battery technology, which is already directly tied to battery efficiency evolution. Nuclear power will vastly increase the supply-chain cleanliness of BEVs, but short of fusion power becoming industrially relevant, and us solving our fresh water problem, there will never be an efficient and clean way to produce hydrogen gas to fuel 300 million vehicles in the US alone, never mind exploding countries like China and India, and the inevitable industrialization of Africa.
 

catmann

Active member
The real Defender 130 Breaks Cover:
It would have been funny if they added the roof and bonnet covers they had on the original Defender mules. I was not sure they would keep the tire on the rear gate as the original concept drawings had the 130 without it, but there it is.
Funny how 12-13 inches can make something look so much larger.

 
Last edited:

DieselRanger

Well-known member
The real Defender 130 Breaks Cover:
It would have been funny if they added the roof and bonnet covers they had on the original Defender mules. I was not sure they would keep the tire on the rear gate as the original concept drawings had the 130 without it, but there it is.
Funny how 12-13 inches can make something look so much larger.

Yeah, as expected the 130 is all rear overhang. Should be a good overland rig, if they would bring the D300 to the States, which they won't. And the V8 in this config will push this to well over $100K off the lot. But...if this is the platform they bring the shortbed pickup on, that would be cool.
 

JackW

Explorer
All three are getting the winch kit - mine is sitting on the floor of my shop until I have a couple of full days to the install it. I think Bryan is in the same boat. Allen just paid the dealer to install his. The major difference between the three cars is interior colors.


View attachment 667706
[/QUOTE]
 

MarcusBrody

Active member
I'm curious if the longer Defender completely cannibalizes the D5 or if the next refresh of the Discovery moves it farther away from the Defender. But I'm not sure where it goes if not into Range Rover territory.
 

SkiWill

New member
@ DieselRanger, there are many headwinds to H2, but with US Department of Energy, the Japanese Government, and other entities making an absolutely enormous investment, you will see H2. Toyota already offers a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle in the US: https://www.toyota.com/mirai/ It's coming. Everyone laughed about battery electric vehicles 15 years ago. Like I said, I may not buy one, but I would rather have an option than all things being decided for me. Besides, electric charging infrastructure isn't without its own set of challenges. I can't tell you how many times working in the power industry an oil and gas extractor looks at a high voltage long distance transmission line running past the oil field and says, "why can't I just tap into that." Well.....7 to 8 figures later, you sure can, but getting the right voltage, frequency, and current at the right place at the right time isn't trivial either. Batteries may well prevail, but I'm not willing to call the death of hydrogen at this point.

@ catmann, I saw that picture and the first thing I heard was Sir-mix-a-lot. "I like big butts..." I can't say I'm a big fan of the new Defender styling, and this 130 doesn't seem to help me in that regard.

@ Marcus Brody, JLR only makes products that compete with its own offerings. If cannibalizing sales were a successful business strategy, JLR would be the most successful business in the world. Turning Range Rover into its own brand to compete with Land Rover and then Jaguar SUVs is crazy. I'm shocked they recently turned a profit. If they were serious about broadening their appeal (and market share) the Defender price point would come down and it would be more utilitarian to compete with Bronco and Jeep. It blows both out of the water with nearly double the payload, more comfort, and practicality and can likely match them off-road, so JLR could have a real winner on their hands.....if they want to. The D5 would be the upscale Mercedes GLE and Jeep Grand Cherokee competitor (but superior to both off-road), Range Rover would continue to be the halo vehicle which could be offered in a long wheelbase 3rd row since they already have the LWB chassis, and if they want to make Subarus (Discovery Sport, Range Rover Evoque) then they can call them Jaguars.

There used to be a differentiation between Discovery and Defender. Now it's, "do you want a rear lift gate or side opening 5th door?" Yes the Defender is still offered in some lower spec trims, but there is far more overlap than not which does not seem to be a good business strategy. Nor does having so much different tooling for "lifestyle" SUVs spread across multiple brands. They could easily consolidate their lineup, reduce production costs, increase profits, and grab more market share. If they want to.
 

DieselRanger

Well-known member
Toyota already offers a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle in the US: https://www.toyota.com/mirai/ It's coming.
The Mirai is a compliance car that is useless for anything other than fleet vehicles with dedicated filling stations - early adopters are dumping them. Long way to go on EV charging infrastructure also, as most high density housing and workplaces don't yet offer them, but for homeowners, a home Level 2 charger is a couple hundred bucks.


 

DieselRanger

Well-known member
Now it's, "do you want a rear lift gate or side opening 5th door?"
If you've been in and driven both, there's a lot more than that. The D5 has an actual, usable third row if you want it, and its offroad geometry is different, particularly in approach and departure, and the Defender has a more capable air suspension system, among other things.

Here is how Land Rover talks about Defender, Discovery, and Range Rover:

Defender: Capability + Durability
Discovery: Capability + Versatility
Range Rover: Capability + Luxury

The differences they are aiming for (from a direct conversation with Felix Brautigham) is that Defender has more durable interior materials and trim - less or no leather, durable carpet or exposed treated metals, more durable but premium-looking plastics, along with the hardened version of the D7 architecture. The Defender drives differently than Discovery (it does indeed, it's softer with more body roll). Discovery maintains the capability, but is more family oriented and be more functionally comfortable as a daily driver. Leather, nicer interior materials, more storage, sleeker design on the outside. The capability differences between the three are very slight, almost zero, but the Defender should be able to do it most easily. The Range Rover is of course all Tweed caps, Bordeaux, and Caviar while crossing the moor for a pheasant hunt.

For what it's worth, I told him that's all great, but focus above all on quality in engineering and assembly, and the dealer service experience, because that's all anybody ever talks about or remembers - it's the original sin of Land Rover and British motoring in general.
 

SkiWill

New member
For what it's worth, I told him that's all great, but focus above all on quality in engineering and assembly, and the dealer service experience, because that's all anybody ever talks about or remembers - it's the original sin of Land Rover and British motoring in general.
Next time you have his ear, add turning circle to the list. My LR4's turning circle is 37.5'. The new Defender 110 is slightly over 42'. Not interested in turning that wide in my vehicle uses. I sold the pickup I used to own for that very reason. I got tired of multipoint turns to get around mountain and canyon shelf road switch backs, and I'm not going back...

Also, we were talking about Defender 130 cannabalizing D5 sales, which is a legitimate concern since it will have a useable 3rd row seat, more storage, worse departure angle than the 110, etc. just like you said differentiates the Defender from D5, which makes them....different? I also couldn't care less about how JLR talks about their cars. They should spend more time listening to customers and how they perceive their cars, which is not a strength as you pointed out.
 

DieselRanger

Well-known member
Next time you have his ear, add turning circle to the list. My LR4's turning circle is 37.5'. The new Defender 110 is slightly over 42'. Not interested in turning that wide in my vehicle uses. I sold the pickup I used to own for that very reason. I got tired of multipoint turns to get around mountain and canyon shelf road switch backs, and I'm not going back...

Also, we were talking about Defender 130 cannabalizing D5 sales, which is a legitimate concern since it will have a useable 3rd row seat, more storage, worse departure angle than the 110, etc. just like you said differentiates the Defender from D5, which makes them....different? I also couldn't care less about how JLR talks about their cars. They should spend more time listening to customers and how they perceive their cars, which is not a strength as you pointed out.
Yeah, advertising and market positioning and all that only works when the audience doesn't know it's happening to them, or when the audience already wants what you're selling and is just looking for justification for their own desires. Jerry Seinfeld put it best. But bottom line you're going to buy what you want to buy and if it's not a Land Rover that's OK.

The 110 is already cannibalizing sales from the Discovery, and many people say the Defender is the best Discovery, etc. But American shoppers always cross shopped Defender and Discovery in the few years they overlapped here, and in the past they chose Discovery, because it was marketed basically as a Defender that could comfortably hold your family. The Defender was sharp corners, uncomfortable seats, drafty, loud at highway speeds, hot in the summer and cold in the winter. Now they're choosing Defender over Discovery, because they fixed all the things most people didn't like about it. But if you look very closely at them both in real life you will see a clear difference. If it doesn't matter or isn't attractive to you, it's not their fault - you just don't want what they're selling.

But regardless of what you think about it, the New Defender has already, in the midst of a global pandemic crushing car sales, sold more in one full model year in the US than they sold in their entire previous model run in the US.
 
Top