Overlander Spotlight: Brooklyn Coachworks’ North American Spec Defender 90

For this week’s Overlander Spotlight, we caught up with Daniel Marcello of Brooklyn Coachworks, one of our favorite Rover restoration shops. They bring Land Rovers and Range Rover of all eras back to life in amazing and often period correct ways. Today, we’re spotlighting Daniel’s personal North American Spec Defender 90.

Can you tell us a bit about your rig?
My personal North American Spec Defender 90 has been the mule for all our builds. I’ve rigorously tested it for the past 16 years. Its had a life in New York City driving around in the sweltering hot summer heat. It has also been off-roaded in every condition imaginable.

Can you tell us about your favorite mods or features?
I’ve modified my Defender and figured out all the ins-and-outs of how to make it perform best. I’ve driven half its life with the stock gasoline powered V8 and the other half with a diesel powered 300tdi with various tire sizes from 29” tires to 35” tires, with custom 4-inch lifts. It’s also had a soft-top, hardtop, roof rack, winches, and all the differential and transfer-case gearing one could imagine.

What have been some of your favorite trips with your rig so far?
I’ve taken it from the deserts of Moab, the mountains in Colorado, the arctic condition in Canada, and through deeper rivers than I would like to remember. I used and abused my own Defender to make Brooklyn Coachwork’s customers their perfect Land Rovers.

What are some of Brooklyn Coachwork’s current models that you’re most excited about?
We’re wrapping up a Suffix B Range Rover Classic. It’s an early 2 door Range Rover is painted in Tuscan Blue with its original 3.5l V8 engine and manual 4 speed LT95 transmission. We’re excited to honor Range Rover’s 50th anniversary this year with some very special early Suffix built Land Rovers!

Follow Brooklyn Coachworks on Instagram and check out all their builds on their website.