Of all the British automobile brands that have survived to the modern era, Land Rover has always been the one that best appealed to American tastes for big engines in big trucks. The Land Rover Defender in particular has become an off-road legend in its own right, winning accolades across the globe even if the engine options didn’t exactly stir the loins. The Defender epitomizes “slow and steady wins the race”, though a Central Florida shop had other ideas.
Maxim reports on Project Beast, an unholy union between a Land Rover Defender and a LS3 engine pulled from a C6 Corvette. This bonding of British steel and an American motor has created quite the beast indeed.
With the 430 horsepower LS3 sending power to all four wheels, the Defender can launch itself from 0 to 60 MPH in approximately 7 seconds. The four-wheel drive system had to be beefed up to handle the extra power (a stock Defender makes due with a 2.2 liter diesel making just 122 horsepower), and ECD installed limited slip differentials front and rear to make the best use of the power. Stronger Ashcroft driveshafts were also installed in a bid to bulk up the running gear.
The upgrades continue beyond the powertrain to include an all-new frame built by ECD themselves, fitted with a Terrafirma suspension that modernizes the Defender for today’s off-road enthusiast. Tarox brakes brakes bring everything to a halt, and the interior has been upgraded to appeal to the kind of driver who wants a Corvette-powered Land Rover. Oh, and there’s a winch too, not that we imagine it getting much use.
Though Project Beast might not be the most original name, it’s a rather apt statement in this case. We do have a suggestion though, and that’s to add a supercharger, creating “Project SuperBeast”. Has a certain ring to it, no?