Take a look at how Land Rover brings old vehicles back to factory-fresh condition, and then take one for a drive.
If you ever wanted to get an up-close look at the process of making old-school off-roaders ready for the mud again, Land Rover Classic has started offering tours of its restoration shop in Solihull, England. Visitors can even pay extra for the experience of driving a classic Defender at the Land Rover Experience center.
The three-hour tours let visitors hear stories about classic Land Rovers and get a detailed look at the Series I Reborn restoration project. These special vehicles are the brand’s take on the recent continuation vehicles from Jaguar. The company’s team is searching the globe for 25 of the original vehicles from 1948. The technicians in Solihull are then restoring them back to the original factory condition and using original production techniques. When the crew completes the overhaul, clients have a vehicle that’s as good (possibly even better) as what was available in showrooms nearly 70 years ago.
Going on the tour costs 29 pounds ($35.60) per person. For 150 pounds ($186.16), visitors can bundle it with the Driving Experience in a Defender. The drive puts a person behind the wheel of one of these classic SUVs, and an instructor coaches the client through an off-road course.
Defender production ended early in 2016. We don’t expect to see the much-anticipated successor until 2018 and production likely wouldn’t start until 2019. It would reportedly use an aluminum monocoque chassis and source engines from other models in Jaguar Land Rover’s lineup. Expect a retro-inspired design that’s boxy but still far more aerodynamic than the original. Multiple wheelbase lengths and body styles would continue to give customers lots of choices, too.
After Land Rover retired the Defender, a British billionaire reportedly approached the company about buying the rights to the vehicle and potentially restarting production. The automaker absolutely refused and said the model was too important to the brand’s identity. This tour would give visitors more insight into why the business values its first product so highly.
Source: Land Rover