Air Intake System for Defender Fitting Guide

Fit a raised air intake to a TDCi. Not as simple as it seems, as Martin Domoney of Land Rover Owners magazine explains...

Essentially, a raised air intake moves the location at which the engine draws its air from to a higher point.

This helps prevent the air filter clogging up in dusty conditions, and allows a far deeper safe wading depth when combined with extended axle and transmission breathers.

Up to 2007, fitting one was easy: the pipework from the wing vent to the airbox was sturdy and well-sealed, needing only a smear of silicone sealant to be air-tight.

Martin’s no stranger to drilling holes in body panels, having fitted a variety of accessories to brand-new Land Rovers in his main dealer days. ‘It can be daunting, but just be certain with your measurements and you can’t go wrong,’ he says.

But when the more modern TDCi engines were introduced, Land Rover decided that poorly fitting pieces of plastic trunking were sufficient to feed the TDCi with fresh air. Sealing the plumbing on these engines is near-impossible due to the push-together construction of the inlet plenum in the wing, and ducting all the way to the airbox.

So, fitting a raised air intake to a standard TDCi intake system is nigh-on pointless.

Luckily, Australian company Nugget Stuff has the solution. By removing the standard restrictive pipework and replacing it with quality plastic pieces sealed and joined by a bigger clampable hose, the problem is cured. No unwanted air can ‘leak’ into the inlet, and the engine will breathe only from the snorkel top – just the way it should be.


All done!

29 Not only does the Defender look infinitely cooler with the raised air intake, we can now wade with complete confidence knowing that the engine is gulping air from high up by the roof, and the whole system is sealed all the way to the turbocharger. On top of this, the new Nugget Stuff system is a lot more free-flowing than the standard plastic trunking, so it’s a doubly-effective mod. Result!

This article originally appeared in Land Rover Owners Magazine and has been reproduced with permission. Article is written by Land Rover expert Martin Domoney.

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