Whitley, England - Land Rover has released a picture of a camouflaged prototype that is quite obviously the all-new Defender, with ‘strict instructions’ not to unwrap until 2019.

That’s as much as is being said for now, but it is the first ‘official’ confirmation that the all-new mud-plugger will be revealed to the world fairly soon. This also comes in the wake of various sightings of this prototype in the UK, with its boxy design that seems reminiscent of the previous generation Discovery, for which the new Defender could be a spiritual successor almost as much as it is to the original Defender.

Land Rover is of course remaining tight-lipped on the specifics, but it promises to be both modern and rugged.

Earlier this month Land Rover marketing chief Felix Bräutigam told Autocar that the newcomer would do all that its customers expect of it “without being a copycat of what has gone before".

“It is a car for the modern world, and that means that it must move the game on if it is to be relevant,” Bräutigam added.

Furthermore, Land Rover boss Ralph Speth has reportedly described the Defender's off-roading ability as “sensational”.

The British carmaker was meant to have replaced the Defender at a much earlier stage, with the original concept car (DC100) having made its debut way back in 2011, but fans ultimately rejected the ‘modern Defender’ theme proposed there, and Land Rover went back to the drawing board.

While the new model will be revealed some time in 2019, it is only set to go on sale in 2020.

Watch this space for updates.

IOL Motoring