Truck Trends, Jason Gonderman visits East Coast Defender

Land Rover Defender for Sale in USA

A few weeks ago we flew Jason Gonderman of Truck Trend out for a tour and test drive of our facility, aka The Rover Dome. After finding out that Jason had never ridden in a Defender before (as if we weren’t already going to take him out for a test drive in our LS3 D90), we made sure to give him a taste of the Defender lifestyle in our Project Venice. Here’s a bit of what Jason had to say about his test ride:


“All of the Defenders were fun and easy to drive… They aren’t super quiet, especially with the soft-top, and aren’t ultra refined like a Rover of today, but that’s not what Defender buyers are looking for anyway. The factory Rover V-8 won’t win any races, but the nostalgia makes it fun to tootle around in. If winning races is something that you’d like to do, the Defender 90 with the LS3 and four-speed transmission is the ticket. This one felt like a rocket ship, with quick acceleration and crisp shifts. Most refined of the bunch was the LS3 and six-speed combination. This combination retains all of the LS3’s potency but combines it with an extremely smooth shifting transmission.” – Jason Gonderman, Truck Trend


Bingo Jason! Only a few laps around the local area and Jason has already picked up on the culture of the Defender, fun, easy to drive, not always quiet but we agree – the nostalgia is what makes it fun. Plus, our latest use of the LS3 and 6 speed auto transmission as Jason mentioned has proven to give the most satisfying of purrs upon start up and while driving, depending on the exhaust attached of course.

Read what else Jason discovered from East Coast Defender: Here


Ready to get started on your own custom land Rover Defender? Email us at or call (407) 483-4825.

Choosing the Right Interior for Your Build

Land Rover Defender for Sale in USA

Land Rover Defenders are world renowned for their technical abilities and raw off-road power, but at East Coast Defender, we look to add a luxurious edge with our fully-customized interiors. From hand-stitched leather interior, to touch-screen navigation and sound specifications, there’s a lot of room for customization in your build. The key is understanding the elements that fit your lifestyle and the ways your Defender will be put to use on the road.

Start with comfort: we can install any manner of heating systems into the interior of your vehicle, turning your Defender’s cockpit into a virtual living room. Consider the possibilities on the technology side: LED lighting weaved into the entire package, Bluetooth and GPS in a full touch screen easy-to-use setting, and importantly, a premium sound system that will ensure that the growl of our high-powered engines don’t steal all the glory.

Our interiors are fully customizable in terms of positioning as well as color. Choose from jet-black, eye-popping red velvet, or stunning tan, and match your Defender’s exterior with ease. Seat layouts can range from a mere one (for the solo sportsmen), all the way up to a lucky seven, featuring four jump-style rear seats. Having an idea of how many people you plan to ferry around in your lavish road machine is a good suggestion before beginning the build process.

Never forget that your interior is but a window to the exterior. Window systems and stylistic dashboard systems put a new tinge on the world as it glides past the road of a custom Land Rover Defender. A Puma dash upgrade puts both luxury and ease of control at your fingertips. A Masai panoramic rear glass window, power windows, and fully-customizable sunroofs have the ability to transform your view of the road for good.

Interior versatility, luxury, and innovation are our cornerstones. Our Land Rover Defender’s are handcrafted in the U.S.A. by the experts at East Coast Defender; we can build the creation of your dreams. Contact us today at 407-483-4825 or e-mail us at for more information.


Prepping your Defender to go Off-Road

Land Rover Defender 90

Land Rover Defenders are, quite literally, built to live off-road. Masters of the scenic route, champions of worldwide rugged car races, and outfitted with every conceivable piece of gear you may need out in the wilderness, Land Rover Defenders in the U.S. are indispensable icons of mud and jagged elevations. With that all said, they don’t prepare or drive themselves: when deciding to take a Defender on an off-road adventure, it’s critical that you take the steps to be ready. Driving a vehicle like the Defender off-road puts a certain amount of responsibility on your shoulders, for both safety and the sake of the environment you choose to venture into. It is not to be taken lightly.

So with that in mind, here a few useful tips before going out that can prove invaluable:

Understand the Terrain: This sounds simple, but to prepare for the environment you must know the environment. Make it a point to identify, down to the smallest detail, the nature of the terrain you are looking to conquer. Success favors preparation, and only once you know what you’re getting yourself into can you even begin to prepare your Defender for the forces sure to assault it.

Understand the Vehicle: Veteran owners and drivers of Defenders know their vehicles as if they were an additional piece of their body. They know the noises, can feel the engine, and understand the stress it can take. If you are new to your Defender, be cautious in taking it into extreme off-roading too quickly. Our advice: always get a few miles under your belt first.   

Achieve Pinnacle Maintenance: From checking for possible rust on the chassis to fresh fluids, there’s no reason to not have your Defender at peak form when taking on formidable off-road challenges. Disc pads, seals, bearings, plugs, and batteries: give them all a good going over.

Tires: One of the most beloved aspects of a Land Rover Defender is the ability to use an amazing array of car hardware. The types of tires you choose all depend on vehicle and environment; research is always key here.

Accessories: Custom wenches, water jugs, 25-gallon fuel tanks, Masai rack ladders, LED lights, and the list goes on and on. What you may need for your off-road journey can be exceptional and, well, awesome gear. No reason to get out into the field without being at full strength.

This is but a few things to consider when preparing your Defender for an off-road volley. The experts are East Coast Defender create remarkable Land Rover Defenders in the U.S. Our team can build the most high-end and beautiful luxury vehicle but still maintain complete off-road capability. Contact us today at 407-483-4825 or e-mail us at for more information.

ECD Builds Project XIII for the Plank Family

Land Rover Defender for Sale


We recently introduced you to Project XIII and are proud to say that it was built for none other than Under Armour founder, Kevin Plank. Project XIII, who’s namesake is based on Mr. Plank’s birthday, was well equipped to handle both Mr. Planks city drives and those days where the family just wants to escape off-road.

Scroll through the Project XIII journey to hear about the Planks’ experience with ECD.


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Starting off as a rare one of only 500 1993 NAS 110 Defenders, Project XIII has proven itself to be one of the most performance inspired builds we’ve had to date. Projext XIII featured a Chevrolet LS3 engine, complete with included GM warranty, all digital guages, an electronic push button shifter, a premium 15 speaker sound system with touch screen navigation, Continental road tires, Masai Panoramic rear windows, 9-seater layout style, all new LED lighting through-out, all dressed in its Corris Grey premium paint.

“When we set our sights on a Defender, we soon realized that this was not going to be as easy as we thought and a custom build project was our best option.  Tom was honest and upfront about what the build would entail and his easy going but thorough manner quickly put our minds at ease.  We trusted him and his experienced team with the process and the end result was nothing but awesome!

Our experience working with ECD was a breeze – the team was responsive, considerate of our time line and budget and kept an open line of communication during our build.  The progress website devoted to our project was incredibly helpful so we could check in and see real time pictures and progress!  It helped build the anticipation, for sure.

We could not be happier with the way our Defender turned out and have had so much fun with it.

 The Plank Family

fullsizerender-20After its completion here at the Rover Dome, ECD’s Founder, Tom headed north to hand-deliver Project XIII to Mr. Plank, Founder of Under Armour. Settled in with brother and co-founder Elliot, and our first employee and Parts Manager, Brandon, Tom began the journey across several states and had a few site seeing stops along the way. Keep in mind our founders are English, so they still harbor some tourist-like tendencies when traveling outside of our sunny Florida location. Take a look at Tom’s photos taken on the journey up:



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Want to see more photos of Project XIII? Click HERE. If you’re ready to start your own build, call us at (407) 483-4825 or email us at

Land Rover Defender: James Bond’s Choice

Land Rover Defender 90

James Bond has driven, in no particular order, such iconic vehicles as the Aston Martin DB5, a BMW 750iL, and a Jaguar XJ (X351). In Tomorrow Never Dies, Pierce Brosnan as Bond has to flee through the streets of Saigon as a Range Rover (P38A) launches itself after him. So, with the history of incredible cars in Bond movies, a very part of the fabric of the franchise itself, it seemed like only a matter of time before a Land Rover Defender made an appearance. It’s a vehicle that defines the side of Bond displayed by Daniel Craig perhaps most prominently: toughness and rigor.

In 2012’s highly-acclaimed Skyfall, the Defender took a quick star turn as the 110 double cab version in metallic silver during an opening chase scene (the car was handled by the always on point Bond character, Moneypenny). The vehicle used in the shoot itself was later auctioned off but was essentially a very basic model of the malleable Land Rover.

In 2016’s Spectre, the Defender returned, this time in the rugged mountains of Austria, and in the Spectre iteration, the Defender is highly modified: 37-inch Baja tires, Bilstein steering shock-absorbers, a mobile in-cab tire inflator, roof rack, roll-cage, a ridiculously massive front winch, as well as an all black interior and exterior. It also included a modified Turbo diesel 2.2-liter engine, according to Ollie Kew at Top Gear, who had the opportunity to test-drive the actual model used in the movie. He described it as “the best Defender I’ve ever driven.” Expert modification can have that effect.

Bond is defined by the cars that he drives and even the cars that chase him. Luxurious but ready to rumble, the Land Rover Defender fit into his story arc perfectly. Only 10 versions of the masterpiece on display in the 24th anniversary of the Bond films were created, many of which took a beating in the actual rough and tumble filming of the feature.

But it’s this kind of flexible and elastic interior and exterior work that makes the wizards at East Coast Defender grin. We can create a bespoke Land Rover Defender fit for a Bond, wheeling right out of our 18,000 square foot Rover Dome here in the U.S.A. Contact us anytime at 407-483-4825 or e-mail us at for more information on what we can create for you. Your imagination is the only limitation.

Land Rover Defender Heritage: The Defender’s Beginnings

Land Rover Defender 90

It sprung from the age of the Greatest Generation with utility mainly in mind: tough and admirable, Land Rover’s original Series 1 got the job done. Forged from the shadow of war, the Land Rover Defender would eventually become an iconic all-purpose vehicle, renowned as much for its tenacity on washed-out jungle roads as its effectiveness stewarding bails of hay around the old country farm. Eventually, luxury and prestige would become hallmarks of the Defender, right alongside its continuing legacy as a workhorse of the highest order. If the Defender was personified, it would be as a blackjack player in a Monaco casino; the relaxed gentlemen calmly making the right moves with a subtle scar he doesn’t talk about in polite company.

In reality, the Series 1, which would morph over the years into the iconic Land Rover Defender known today, wasn’t supposed to be much more than a stopgap vehicle pieced together from supplies available in a post-World War II Europe. But as it would show over the next half-century, some creations take on a life of their own, and some trucks own the road, not to mention the areas off it, with an undeniable vitality.

The Series 1, arriving in 1948, led to the Series II in 1958, which led to the unmistakably legendary V8 monster that was the Series III in 1971. By the mid-1970s, Land Rover surpassed the one millionth machine built, and throughout the 1980s, the company continued to tinker with design and engine specifications (including a Series III station wagon and truck version).

This all set the stage, some 43 years after its inception and with now countless devotees and admirers, to the pièce de résistance of the Land Rover fleet: 1991’s Defender. By this time, to the the toast of royalty, the military, and the everyday gear-aficionado, the Land Rover Defender was well established as an off-road legend. But in its 90, 110, and 130 version, it became something more: transitioning into a luxury vehicle with specifications that could range from the eclectic to the divine. And under it all, that unmistakable Defender engine continued slamming fuel and conquering anything put before its solid wheelbase.

Throughout history, Land Rover Defenders were considered cornerstone vehicles in any garage across the planet. Sturdy, adaptable, and unstoppable, they became a personality all their own. Modifications to the vehicle now became an art form, a reflection of the owner, representing the personality of the person behind those tremendous wheels. Amazing evolution without losing one’s humble beginnings and history: that’s the story of the Land Rover Defender.

At East Coast Defender, we take the next step in the growth of this remarkable vehicle with our high quality, custom builds. Contact us today at 407-483-4825 or e-mail us at for more information on the iconic Land Rover Defender we can build exclusively for you.