British designer and creator of colourful things Sir Paul Smith has applied his skills to the Defender. The result is a quirky one-of-a-kind tailor-made by Land Rover’s Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) division.
The Paul Smith Defender features colours said to be inspired by the British countryside and Defenders used by the armed forces, with a few more slightly brighter hues here and there as requested by Smith himself. It was unveiled at designer shop No. 9 Albermarle Street in Mayfair, London.
Sir Paul Smith – himself a fan of the Defender – wanted the design to be playful yet adhere to the traditions associated with the model. Land Rover design director and chief creative officer Gerry McGovern helped make that happen.
“I wanted deep rich colours, but at the same time, I wanted them to work together yet be surprising,” Sir Paul Smith said.
He added: “This is a complete one-off; I wanted to give this Defender a feeling of luxury, so I used a mix of leather and fabric for the seats. I actually used the fabric that I design for Maharam, the American upholstery company. The vehicle features lots of special Paul Smith touches.
“Inside, black leather contrasts against blue stitching and there are lots of little hidden details throughout. For example, there is an image of a set of keys printed inside the glove compartment. Then there is a hand-painted bee on the roof, which is another little tongue-in-cheek reference to the countryside and the heritage of the car.
“Also, the traditional Defender clock has been replaced with a Paul Smith fascia. My designs are known for their attention to detail, so I didn’t want this Defender to be any different.”
A total of 27 colours make up the Land Rover Defender, making it a contender for the most colourful 4×4 on the planet award. This is hardly the vehicle for wading through mud, then, but it’s a fitting tribute for a vehicle that will soon be made no more after a 68-year history.
Special edition cars are fairly common, particularly where Fiat is concerned, but the Defender is as rare as it gets. So no you probably can’t afford it, but you can look at the images below for free. Then look at Kahn Design’s six-wheeled interpretation.