The new Land Rover Defender is a faithful iteration of the iconic off-roader with its modern boxy styling and all-conquering prowess. As it turns out, Ares Design has come up with something better, and it’s based on the previous-gen Defender with a genuine ladder chassis.
“We created our first Defender Ultra V8 in 2018, so we have great knowledge of the vehicle and led us to create a second edition with an even more distinctive style and refined finish,” said Dany Bahar, Ares Design CEO.
It all starts with an old Defender 110 SW and generous servings of lightweight carbon-fiber body panels. Ares removed any visible body bolts and widened the fenders for a cleaner and more aggressive look. Also new are LED headlights, circular LED taillights, and a one-piece carbon-fiber front and rear end.
Additionally, Defender Spec 1.2 has bespoke 18-inch Ares-designed alloy wheels wrapped in Copper Discoverer STT Pro all-terrain tires. The taller ride height is courtesy of a 1.4-inch lift kit and electronically adjustable suspension. It also gets a panoramic roof and larger tinted windows.
Under the hood, the Defender’s old four-cylinder diesel engine is replaced with a 4.8-liter V8 motor with 280 horsepower and 324 pound-feet of torque. “Powered by the same V8 engine, the Ares Land Rover Defender Spec 1.2 retains the characteristics of the new Defender design but beautifully reimagined to express modernity and luxury,” added Bahar.
The engine sends power to all four wheels via a standard six-speed automatic gearbox. Furthermore, Ares reinforced the CV joints and axle shafts to cope with V8 power. Of course, the old brakes were retired in favor of an AP Racing brake kit with six-piston calipers.
Ares Design is known for turning ‘ordinary’ vehicles into something worth remembering. Last year, the company debuted its S Project Coupe and S1 Project Spyder supercars based on the new C8 Corvette. Whereas the S Project Coupe starts at $490,000, you don’t need that much money to order your very own Land Rover Defender Spec 1.2, although Ares has yet to divulge the exact cost of entry for its newest creation.
But if the first Ares Land Rover Defender is anything to go by, expect prices to start upwards of $264,000 for the conversion (not including the cost of an old Land Rover Defender), which Ares claims will take around three months to complete.
Ares Design Land Rover Defender Spec 1.2 Gallery