With 2022 marking the 60th anniversary of the James Bond film franchise, Land Rover celebrated this notable milestone by entering a rally-prepared Defender 90 into the 2022 Bowler Defender Challenge. Mark Higgins, a three-times British Rally Champion and Bond stunt driver, competed in the North Wales leg on March 26.

Land Rover has a long-running association with the Bond franchise, and Higgins has been behind the wheel in four James Bond films - Quantum of Solace, Skyfall, Spectre and No Time to Die. Higgins made his return to rally driving and was joined by co-driver Claire Williams.

The Defender 90 Higgins and Williams competed in featured trademark black and gold Bond livery, and also showcased a special 007 60th logo on its roof and sides. The New Defender was a fitting choice as it appears in the latest Bond release No Time to Die. It’s powered by the P300 Ingenium powertrain, and incorporates a range of safety modifications including a full roll cage, enhanced cooling for the engine and transmission, a sports exhaust and new rear roof spoiler. Other enhancements to ensure competition readiness included strengthened 18-inch Bowler wheels with all-terrain tyres and a bespoke suspension design.

Ahead of the rally Mark Higgins said, “The New Defender is a tough and capable vehicle when it leaves the production line and I’ve seen it perform really challenging stunts while on the set of No Time To Die. With the race ready enhancements made by the Bowler team and with Claire by my side we are confident we can have a great result."

On the day, the pace and experience of Higgins and Williams and the unstoppable performance of the Defender 90 proved to be an unbeatable combination, with the team winning the Bowler Defender Challenge Rally North Wales Round.