Custom Land Rover Defender Pair by GAS and Undefeated Offers Posh Overlanding

When the new Land Rover Defender launched in 2020, the main complaint most people had was that it had lost the ruggedness and simplicity of the original. To put it in other words, it had become too posh.

But then again, “posh” seems like a perfectly normal adjective for something coming from the United Kingdom, doesn’t it? Don’t they all drink tea all day and say “dear me” over there anyway? If someone was to make a posh SUV, certainly it would have to be a British brand.

Well, the thing with the new Defender is that it’s only truly luxurious when you compare it to the older model. Next to any other premium machine on the market, the best way you could describe its interior is smart-functional (you can blame the fashion industry for this type of fancy compound words if you don’t like them).

Ironically enough, the SUV built in Slovakia (where Jaguar Land Rover owns a plant) had to travel all the way to Los Angeles to get what could very well be the poshest makeover so far. The transformation came courtesy of Galpin Auto Sports (GAS) and Undefeated, two brands local in the City of Angels that had never worked together until this project.

Their work has already been on display at last year’s L.A. Auto Show, so if this feels familiar, stick around for some more details as well as the high-quality photos – about as high as the effort put into making these two vehicles. If you go through the list of modifications – which we’ll do in a second – you’ll see it’s not about quantity, but rather the attention to detail and the careful choosing of the right design, accessory, or material.

So, we’re looking at two 2021 Defenders, one of the 90 variety, with its shorter wheelbase, and one of the longer 110 (soon to become medium once the 130 gets out) type. Both use the P400 hybrid powertrain which is by far the best option for this model mating a small electric motor to a butter-smooth straight-six twin-turbo engine. This setup mixes massive amounts of power (395 hp and 406 lb-ft / 550 Nm, the latter available from as low as 2,000 rpm) and almost perfectly silent running, something a diesel could never do.

When it comes to starting trim levels, the stubbier SUV gets slightly ahead since it’s a “First Edition” whereas the 110 one is just a SE. Not that any of it matters now after the two American companies – one specializing in car customization and the other in stylish apparel – have had their way with them.

The first thing you’ll notice is the wheels, both vehicles sporting sets of Forgiato Custom “Steelies” with a 19-inch diameter finished in a creamy Ivory paint. They’re not exactly what people refer to when they talk about steel rims, but they sure make the two custom paint jobs stand out. The 90 Defender gets a fresh coat of Galpin Auto Sports’ custom “Jaguar Green” while the 110 one sports its blue equivalent (“Jaguar Blue”). Both SUVs’ roofs were painted to match the wheels.

On the inside, the two vehicles get GAS’ beige Parchment leather upholstery with either “navy houndstooth” or “beach towel” inserts, both of which look equally cool. We’re not so sure about the houndstooth one but the beach towel certainly makes a lot of sense since the 90 Defender has a clear surfing theme (something it definitely had to travel to California for).

The “Jaguar Green” short wheelbase SUV also has an intricate shelving system in the trunk that includes a biometric safe (to leave your important stuff in while you enjoy the waves), as well as a roof rack with surfboard attachment, an awning for shade during those hot summer days, and a road shower to get the sand off your feet before climbing in.

Over on the “Jaguar Blue” side, the 110 Defender has been kitted as a premium overlanding vehicle, sporting a slide-out kitchen with stove and sink, a refrigerator, a rooftop tent, and a roof-mounted 270-degree awning.

Neither of these two custom builds is particularly practical, but they do serve their purpose of drawing attention toward the pair of companies involved in the conversion, if not toward the third one that actually built the SUVs they’re based on as well. It’s something to whet your appetite and get you in the mood for customizing your car. Or buying a Defender. Or going surfing. Or cooking in nature. It depends, I guess.

Article Credit: Vlad Mitrache
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