RE: Land Rover Series II Defender: Spotted

RE: Land Rover Series II Defender: Spotted

Wednesday 10th October

Land Rover Series II Defender: Spotted

The best of both worlds? Today's Spotted can go anywhere, even between generations



In a story last week I accidentally referred to a Series II Defender when, as anyone with even half a brain will tell you, the Series II Land Rover and the Defender are in fact completely separate vehicles. But what if they weren't?

My time in the Series II was all too brief, but there were several things I took away from it. First, its design is even more timeless in person than it is in the photos, with every inch harking back to a time when navigating the world threw up far greater challenges than an uncooperative GPS. Second, it is an absolute pig to drive, the brake pedal doing very little to slow the (hard won) momentum of the car, the gear stick seemingly connected to nothing at all and the steering containing more play than Shakespeare's Globe. And third, none of that did anything to lessen the fun I had behind the wheel.


As off-road aficionados will know, the Series II was produced from 1958 until 1961. Unlike the Series I before it, its design was influenced by Rover's Chief Stylist David Bache who, in better resolving the vehicle's details and softening a few of its corners, created a more well-rounded design - no pun intended - one which would endure for decades to come.

Even by the mid 1980s, when Land Rover introduced the Defender in the shape of the 90 (short-wheelbase) and 110 (long-wheelbase models), the influence of Bache's original design was still clear. The Defender's enhancements were mostly beneath the surface, in the form of permanent four-wheel drive, coil springs, more powerful engine options and an enhanced interior.


Today's Spotted combines the two, adds a little extra, and removes the chance that anyone will be indifferent to the result. It uses the timeless bodystyle of that Series II and the galvanised chassis, 2.5-litre engine and five-speed manual gearbox of a Defender. To this it adds a lift kit, a set of modular wheels wrapped in Cooper Discoverer tyres and some extended wheel arches to finish the job. It's also sporting one of the thickest, shiniest chrome roll bars I've ever seen fitted to a vehicle.

So, for a fiver under £30,000 you get what you'll either view as a muscular, modern take on a classic Land Rover or a sacrilegious mess. Either way you get six seats, power steering, a reliable engine (which "pulls like a train"), a fresh cambelt, service and MOT and a car guaranteed to turn heads whether you're on the high street or a green lane. But most of all what you get is a Series II Defender, a Land Rover which didn't exist, until now.

Here's the ad

Author
Discussion

oilit

Original Poster:

474 posts

114 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
According to the write up - (couldn't be bothered to go to the ad), and the DVLA regs below shouldn't this be on a 'Q' plate?:

Keep a vehicle’s original registration number

A rebuilt vehicle can keep its original registration number if you can prove you’ve used:

the original unmodified chassis or bodyshell (car or light van)
a new chassis or monocoque bodyshell of the same specification as the original (car or light van)
the original unmodified frame (motorbike)
a new frame of the same specification as the original (motorbike)

You must also have 2 other major components from the original vehicle from the following lists.

For cars or light vans:

suspension (front and back)
steering assembly
axles (both)
transmission
engine

If it has a defender chassis, with defender engine, gearbox, power steering and presumably axles as I see discs on front, then it's clearly not a land rover series II anymore ?


Edited by oilit on Wednesday 10th October 06:49

sidesauce

865 posts

154 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Now that is seriously cool.

livinginasia

190 posts

46 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
This car was discussed on the “ringing kits” post on the PH Forum some time ago. It appears it’s not actuallly on a Defender chassis at all, but is actually registered as a Leyland AM which explains the very wide wheel stance. I believe it was found to be a Leyland AM truck that has had a Land Rover body placed on it. Questionable legality due to not being correctly re registered. Does look cool though.

Maldini35

1,861 posts

124 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Silly big wheels and shiny chrome roll bar spoil it for me

Dixy

1,367 posts

141 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
What a complete and utter clusterfk. as someone who owns both a IIa and a late TD5 90 that takes away all the good things of each and brings nothing to the party
Advertisement

cookie1600

1,035 posts

97 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
"this truck is based on a Series 2 land rover body, Defender galvanised chassis, registered on V5 as a 1959 Leyland AM 4x4 utilty,"

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Land-Rover-Defender-ser...

So what is a 1959 Leyland AM 4x4 and if it is the substantial foundation of the vehicle, why is it registered on a 1963 plate? This one is going to be full of trouble if you try and MOT it as I'm sure it should be on a Q plate with an IVA.


ChemicalChaos

8,882 posts

96 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Ding dong merrily on high!
In Swansea bells are ringing!

Turbobanana

1,186 posts

137 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
There's a bloke with a satin black, 110 double-cab pick-up with lift kit, wide track, roll bar (with LEDs, natch), winch etc who tries to fit it in a standard parking space near my office. In addition to the obvious ridicule of a vehicle equipped for the apocalypse, it doesn't really fit.

thegreenhell

4,876 posts

155 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Lose the ridiculous chrome climbing frame in the back and it would at least look quite good, but it would still be useless off-road on those oversized tyres that don't even fit in the arches properly.

shalmaneser

3,467 posts

131 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
"Rover's Chief Stylish David Bache"

Where do I apply for that job?

I assume cravats and smoking jackets are paid for out of a company fund?

Digga

25,310 posts

219 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
shalmaneser said:
"Rover's Chief Stylish David Bache"

Where do I apply for that job?

I assume cravats and smoking jackets are paid for out of a company fund?
Plus you get a free Etch A Sketch, to help you work on the new Defender.

cookie1600

1,035 posts

97 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Nothing adds up:



Date registered and last MOT?

WhiteBaron

1,197 posts

162 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Ignoring the slightly large issue re the heritage........

Due to age claimed is it mot and tax exempt?

Mr-B

1,766 posts

130 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
thegreenhell said:
Lose the ridiculous chrome climbing frame in the back and it would at least look quite good, but it would still be useless off-road on those oversized tyres that don't even fit in the arches properly.
Tyres/wheels not covered by the arches is illegal isn't it? Or have rules changed?

yellowjack

10,980 posts

102 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
It's absolutely chuffing hideous!

Come Friday though, when I've won the Euro-millions, it's going to be a case of "where do I sign?" and "here's a signed cheque, you fill in the amount".

At least then I'd have the cash to back up a complete lack of taste...

cookie1600

1,035 posts

97 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
WhiteBaron said:
Ignoring the slightly large issue re the heritage........
Due to age claimed is it mot and tax exempt?
Hard to determine really as this is such a schizophrenic creation that looks to have any of these base identities:

A 1959 Leyland AM 4x4 truck (?)
An indeterminate year 'Series II' Land Rover (looks like)
A 1971 'Series I' Land Rover (according to the DVLA MOT history)
An indeterminate age Land Rover Defender (chassis, according to the seller)
A 1963 vehicle (according to the number plate)

I haven't a clue what a Leyland AM 4x4 truck from 1959 looks like. Google suggests I look at a Leyland DAF T244 4-tonne 4x4 or Leyland DAF 45 / 150 4x4 which was first supplied to the British Army around 1990. Other sources point towards a Sherpa van, a Leyland Comet, Super Comet, Beaver or Hippo truck (for 1959).

Anyone feeling brave taking this into their ownership and keeping it legally on the road?

InitialDave

4,046 posts

55 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Complete monkey's breakfast of a thing. The price is a joke, and the provenance/identity stuff should be a massive red flag to anyone with half a brain.

Max_Torque

12,956 posts

153 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Given the fact the tub looks to be un-modified, and therefore the 88" wheelbase remains, and given the "stepped" rear cross-member and obvious PTO/Starting handle hole visible in the front of the chassis, in conjunction with the trailing arms showing underneath, i think it's safe to say this vehicle in on an aftermarket 'coil conversion' chassis and not built on a shortened defender production chassis.

300bhp/ton

35,327 posts

126 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
Mr-B said:
thegreenhell said:
Lose the ridiculous chrome climbing frame in the back and it would at least look quite good, but it would still be useless off-road on those oversized tyres that don't even fit in the arches properly.
Tyres/wheels not covered by the arches is illegal isn't it? Or have rules changed?
It wouldn't be an MoT failure as the MoT doesn't check for this and doesn't care. But yes, you are correct, under construction & Use regulations, the tyres cannot stick out uncovered.

Digga

25,310 posts

219 months

Wednesday 10th October
quotequote all
The phrase "built on an Indian burial ground" springs to mind.