East Coast Defender Unveils Two Similar-Yet-Different Custom SUVs

Project Venture and Project Dark Knight have the same bones but different character.

East Coast Defender is back with not one, but two special Land Rover creations to keep the enthusiast fires burning for the infamous off-roader. In this case, the company built a pair of D110 Defenders to customer specifications, and though the vehicles share a basic body style, they have very different personalities.

In this case, the dream vehicles are named Project Venture and Project Dark Knight. We’ll start with the latter one first, and to the disappointment of Batman fans out there, it’s not a crime-fighting machine. The name stems from its black eggshell exterior, which does give the SUV a very menacing presence. That’s further enhanced by the full roll cage attached to the exterior, not to mention the tubular front bumper with the requisite winch. The only bling-worthy items on the outside are the polished 20-inch wheels, which certainly stand out against the sea of darkness.

Inside it’s a different story. The custom interior combines brown and black with seating for six, with a Sony infotainment system up front for controlling the booming stereo and other luxury add-ons. Power comes from a General Motors-spec 5.3-liter V8 making 320 horsepower (239 kilowatts) connected to a six-speed automatic.


By comparison, Project Venture wows the world with actual color – in this case a traditional Land Rover shade of Keswick Green. It too packs a full exterior roll cage finished in black, but the basic front bumper helps give this off-roader less of an apocalyptic vibe. Still, with its black 18-inch wheels and meaty all-terrain tires, it looks ready to handle some business.

The interior accommodations are just as luxurious as those found on the Dark Knight, though gray is the color-of-choice for this Defender. The same Sony infotainment system sits up front, though Project Venture can accommodate seven passengers instead of six. They’ll zip right along too, because the V8 under the hood is a 6.2-liter mill making 430 hp (321 kW), also connected to a six-speed auto.

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