We are pleased to present this 1989 Land Rover Santana Defender 90 "Especial", finished in Sonic Gray Pearl over a black leather interior. This Defender Santana was imported from France in 2010 and originally built by Santana Motor of Spain, a licensed producer of Land Rovers. It was the subject of a complete frame-off restoration commenced in 2017 and completed three years later at a reported cost of over $125k. The work was carried out in collaboration with High Tech Fabrication of Middletown, Rhode Island. Described by its owner as a personal passion project, this Defender was rebuilt piece by piece using only the highest quality components available including a 4.2L Rover V8 rebuilt by Congleton as well as a custom valve-controlled side-exit exhaust system, a rebuilt transfer case and driveline, a new suspension, Terrafirma beadlock wheels, a custom leather-trimmed interior, and much more. Having traveled just over 400 miles since the restoration was completed, this custom Defender 90 is now being offered for auction by its owner out of Massachusetts.
This Defender was completely disassembled before the chassis was restored and refinished in three-stage Sonic Gray Pearl (877), a factory Honda paint color. The axles and frame were both coated in POR protective film while the undercarriage and interior were sprayed with color-matched Rhino liner for durability. A custom-built roll bar was installed with a custom tinted All Wheel Trim mohair soft top. New doors were also fitted with stainless steel hinges, as well as a new tailgate, grille, grille trim, mirrors, bulkhead, and windshield with new rubber gaskets. Additional exterior features include black powdercoated billet diamond plate rockers, a black powdercoated side-exit exhaust, a KBX hi-force fender cowl, custom welded front and rear bumpers, red velvet D-ring shackles, and Anki LED headlights, LED turn signals, brake lights, and side markers. A custom fuel cap and “Especial” badging have also been added as well as a WARN VRS10 front winch with synthetic cable and a wireless remote. This Defender rides on 16” Terrafirma TF102 beadlock wheels mounted with Goodyear Wrangler tires. A matching full-size spare is also mounted on the tailgate.
The interior is upholstered in black leather and comes fitted with a pair of heated Corbeau racing seats and 4-point RJS safety harnesses. Billet trim can be seen throughout the interior including the air vents, custom Lokar shift knob, custom “Defender” door handles, and gauge bezels. Interior amenities include a custom mounted JBL soundbar, Autometer instrumentation with a new metal binnacle, Carling switches, a locking Tuffy Box center console, a custom Euro fire extinguisher, and new Land Rover rubber floor mats. The cabin has been lined with sound deadening material and also features many new OEM parts including plastic trim pieces, controls, blower and wiper motors, dash lights, door panels, latches, handles, pedals, shift gaiters, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, sun visors, and mirrors. The seller reports all new rubber gaskets were used throughout the vehicle and that preparations for an A/C system have been made with a compressor fitted in place.
This Defender 90 is powered by a 4.2L Rover V8 sourced from a mid-nineties Range Rover and completely rebuilt by Congelton, a renowned Range Rover restoration firm based out of Vermont. The rebuild included new heads, valves, lifters, gaskets, seals, and timing components. It was further modified with an Edelbrock intake manifold, a Holley Sniper electronic fuel injection system, an MSD electronic ignition system with a solid-state coil, a Congleton aluminum high-performance radiator with dual electric fans, and a March Performance carbon-fiber billet air intake. Other new mechanical parts include a new starter, alternator, brake booster, power steering pump and reservoir, oil pan, fuel tank, drive belts, silicone hoses, spark plugs, heater core with linkage, and a custom battery tray with charging posts in the engine bay. The Rover V8 is mated to a ZF 4HP22 4-speed automatic transmission, which features a new transmission cooler with AN stainless fittings, and drives all four wheels through a rebuilt 2-speed transfer case. The custom stainless steel side-exit exhaust system includes a Magnaflow muffler and an electronic valve controlled by a switch mounted in the cabin. The suspension has been upgraded with Old Man Emu shocks and a Terrafirma steering damper, while the brakes have been upgraded to disc units with stainless lines on all four corners.
This sale will include a set of keys, build records, and a clean title. Painstakingly restored from the ground up, this custom Land Rover Defender 90 is just waiting to please its next owner.