Custom Land Rover

The 'Fusion' Concept

Unlike other aftermarket style houses that try to cram as much as they can onto a Defender, we think differently. With us, it’s not about what we can add on, but about what we should leave out. It’s not about what can be done, but about what should be done to modernise a motoring icon, so that it remains in-keeping with true Defender values.

The original Series 1 had its heyday in the 1950s. The Series two was king of the 60s and the Series 3 rocked the world in the 1970s. In the mid early 1980s we had the next evolution, which we could call the Series 4, but then it all seemed to stop. Apart from a few cosmetic changes and some engine upgrades, very little has changed over the last 30 years. We seem to have lost three evolutions of Land Rover. 2016 should see the launch of a ‘Series 7’, but instead they’ve pulled the plug.

We had to look back and try to plot a different course for the Land Rover; one where it didn’t cease production in 2016, but instead evolved and thrived. The question we asked was: What would the Defender have become if it had been given proper priority at Land Rover?

Custom Land Rover

When one looks through the eyes of a modern motorist, the Defender has so many things wrong with it it’s hard to know where to start. Outside the styling looks dated and awkward (despite attempts by Land Rover to modernise the front end) and the interior is cramped and noisy. There’s poor visibility, restricted leg and headroom, poor soundproofing and side facing rear bench seats. All in all, it’s not a realistic option for a modern family. We needed to address all of those issues (and plenty more) before we could truly claim to have built a Defender for today’s market.

We decided to restyle the font end by trying to make it look more like the other models currently being sold by the Land Rover marque. Not an easy task, but after a lot of computer mock-ups we settled on a design that we feel ticked all the boxes. By using a different bumper, adapting it to a twin headlight arrangement and giving the Defender de-seamed wings and a new grille, we have managed to give the front end a look that feels modern, yet is still very much a Defender.

The resulting ‘Fusion’ design has a presence to it that makes it feel like it is part of a cohesive in-house design philosophy, rather than as an aftermarket conversion. We were keen to keep it simple and clean looking. The changes flow nicely as if the car has evolved naturally over time. In fact, one of the most common comments we hear is ‘is this the new Defender?’, which is exactly the reaction we wanted from the outset.