ECD’s process of restoring a custom Defender is a multi-stage process, starting with a base vehicle that has been imported from Europe, Australia, and South America. Once the base vehicle has been obtained, the complete restoration process begins. Each build is a full ground-up restoration, every nut and bolt is replaced, leaving no part as it was before.
Each base vehicle is fully torn down to a bare chassis. The axles are then removed and both the axles and classes are sent out to be sandblasted to remove rust, imperfections, existing paint, or protective coating. While the chassis is being sandblasted, body panels and parts from the base vehicle are removed and brought to our body prep technicians. Old suspension bushings are pushed out so that new ones can be installed. Once the chassis and axles are finished being sandblasted, they are lined with Line-X protective coating. Axles, brakes, and a new suspension are then installed before the chassis moves to our drivetrain department.
ECD’s offers plenty of engine options depending on the performance, gas mileage, reliability, and ease of maintenance that the client is interested in. Our most popular engine choice by clients for their custom restored Defender is the LS3 V8 engine. Used by GM in the Chevy Corvette, the LS3 is known for its modern performance and reliability. ECD also offers optional performance tuning to further increase the power output of the LS3 V8, allowing it to produce just under 600-horsepower. The LC9 V8 engine is a more affordable alternative to the LS engine if you’re looking for excellent reliability. Still packing plenty of power, this is the second most popular engine for a custom Defender built by ECD. The Cummins diesel is an innovative and widely popular turbo diesel engine. The Rover V8 is a compact engine if your preference is to maintain all original parts on your custom restored Defender.
As the engine and drivetrain are being installed, body panels and parts were sent to our body prep and paint department, where they are thoroughly inspected for damage or if any parts need to be sandblasted. Parts then undergo another inspection for dents, scratches, and imperfections to be repaired before moving into the paint department. Parts are then primed and set to cure before being sanded and inspected again. After passing inspection, parts are painted in the color chosen by the client. Paint colors offered by ECD are unlimited! After parts are painted and clear-coated, they are polished and sent to the cosmetics department for installation onto the vehicle.
Simultaneously, ECD’s in-house upholstery team begins working on the custom restored Defender interior. Specific seats offered for your custom restored Defender include the Puma Classic, Puma Modular, Corbeau Trailcats, Corbeau RRS, Exmoor MK2 Elite, and Recaro Orthoped seats, all of which can be heated and/or ventilated. Seats in your Defender can all be upholstered in any color leather you can think of, along with any stitch color. E.C.D. offers different brands of leather such as Spinneybeck, Garrett leather, and Hydes Nappa leather. These leathers increase the overall feel and look of your seats. The stitch pattern is also important to the overall look of your custom seats. Whether you want square, horizontal, double diamond, or diamond square, E.C.D. can create any stitch pattern for your seat design that you can imagine. When choosing a leather for your custom seat design, having leather options from high-end luxury brands such as Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Maserati is a perk of building a restored Defender. Having the highest quality leather gives the feel of ultimate luxury while having an incredibly comfortable seat.
In ECD’s cosmetics department, our electrics team begins their work. Here, all of the appropriate harnesses and electrical components are installed, tested, and put together. Body panels and doors move to pre-assembly. Here, the doors and body panels are properly wrapped in white vinyl to protect the new paint from elements and potential scratches or damage. After pre-assembly, the final stages of restoration begin. The interior will start to be installed as other technicians work on the final exterior parts. The interior assembly includes the custom-upholstered seats, carpeting, headliner, dash, center console(s) and additional accessories. On the exterior, light bars, roll cages, wheels, windows, roof racks, body kits, and other additional parts are installed. The completed vehicle is then fully detailed before moving to our Quality Control team.
Once in QC, the vehicle undergoes an extremely thorough, 400-point inspection over the course of twenty-one days. Every inch of the vehicle is examined, right down to the nuts and bolts. During this time, approximately 500 test-miles are put onto the vehicle to ensure each vehicle is performing optimally. Here, the vehicle is also tuned if necessary. Once the full QC inspection has been completed and approved, the custom restored Defender is fully detailed once more before being delivered to the client.
Unit 107 – 4930 Industrial Lane Kissimmee, FL 34758
UK logistics Center
Unit 5 Crown Industrial Estate
© 2022 ECD Automotive Design. All images are the property of ECD Auto Design and cannot be used without our consent. E.C.D. Automotive Design is not affiliated, associated, authorized, endorsed by, or in any way officially connected with Jaguar Land Rover Limited, or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates, including Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC. DEFENDER and RANGE ROVER are registered trademarks of Jaguar Land Rover Limited.