Building some of the world’s most unique and cool custom vehicles requires a level of knowledge and skill that is only acquired over time, that and a pretty solid foundation to start with. Whether that foundation is an amazing team of employees or a really great pair of custom-painted wheels, our builds depend on a solid foundation to be entirely rebuilt from the ground up.
An integral stage of the foundation for our custom Land Rover Defenders is the sourcing and tear downr of our build’s original base vehicles. Our founders, all originally from the U.K., have all grown up seeing Defenders as regular, everyday vehicles, and in moving to the U.S., learned that’s not so much the case here. Over the years, our founders have built relationships with individuals in both the U.K. and all across the globe to source some of the vehicles in their true original condition; we aren’t afraid of a little elbow grease.
Once we have a base vehicle sourced for our client’s perfect build, we have it delivered to our massive facility based here in Kissimmee, Florida. Our dedicated Tear Down bay receives the vehicle; we document its current state for the client and keep an original hinge as a small memento for the client’s welcome box. Our Tear Down Bay then assesses the classic Defender and begins the meticulous task of taking it apart bolt by bolt.
Starting with easier portions that will be separated and reused, our team carefully removes the vehicle’s body panels and stores them until they are ready to be stripped and refinished. The build’s guts are also removed, and any requested original pieces are set aside in case they can be refurbished for reuse. Things like the original engine, wiring harness, lighting are all usually unable to be repaired or reused with the modern functionality of the classic Defender’s upgrades, so they are disposed of. Major accessories like the wheels, roll cages, and bumpers are often set aside for reuse somewhere else down the line as they typically can be refinished by our team.
While tear down is still the fastest part of the custom Defender building process, demolition always it, it is a crucial step in ensuring every vehicle has a solid foundation to work from. The build keeps its original chassis, which we painstakingly repair and make anew to be refinished in the client’s choice of options (replaced galvanized, raptor lined, repainted).
We’ve seen some base vehicles come to the shop full of history, stories to tell, and some pretty unusual quirks that help start as the foundation of a vehicle that will be brought back to life, ready to take on modern times. It completely transforms the perspective and passion we have for these trucks and what they genuinely mean as they travel from one portion of history to another. Tear down may be the messiest, but seeing the vehicle fully stripped and made new, will always have us in awe.
If you’re interested in watching our build’s coming back to life, take a look at our live stream on the E.C.D. YouTube channel, where you can get a full view of the inner workings of the Rover Dome. Ready to start your dream build? Get in touch at [email protected].
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. We build restored defenders, range rover classic’s, and jaguar etypes.