There’s something earthy about the Land Rover Defender, like it’s part of the very soil of Britain. Lord knows it’s traversed its fair share of fields and farmland, from Stornoway to Surrey and beyond. It was even conceived in the land, as a sketch in the sand in the Forties, and since then it has weathered wars, carried explorers and been a runabout for the monarchy, James Bond and Sir Winston Churchill. Early versions were painted with military surplus paint left over from Supermarine Spitfires, it was built in a wartime shadow factory, and it soon became a British Army favourite. In fact, it’s hard to imagine anything more patriotic, other than Mary Berry wrapped in a Union Jack bursting out of a giant sponge cake to the strains of Elgar.
Photography: Steven Cassidy
This feature was originally published in the October 2015 issue of Top Gear magazine