Why Bishop+Rook As Your Builder

What started off as a hobby and a passion for Defenders turned into a life-changing adventure.
We are builders, not brokers. We build and restore Defenders with our own hands.

Who You Trust To Source, Build, or Refresh Your Defender Matters

You have a lot of choices when it comes to acquiring and owning a vintage Land Rover Defender.  We, of course, hope you chose Bishop+Rook. We take the same amount of care and attention to each project we put on the market, whether you’re buying a basic un-restored project D90 or commissioning a completely bespoke build. We treat each project as if we were adopting it ourselves.

Where We Began

We’ve grown from the simple days when importing vintage Land Rover Defenders was just a hobby. We soon realized  that sourcing, importing, refreshing, building, and selling Defenders from our garage didn’t do justice to the process or those who would adopt from our fleet. Often times we felt the need to cut corners, not due to lack of good intentions, but rather due to the lack of space, inability to take on difficult repairs, and the lack of time to really dig in and create an honest Defender we would be proud to drive ourselves.

This is probably the case with a lot of the Defenders you see on eBay or marketed via social media.  It’s not to say you’re always going to be disappointed with that type of purchase, we just know because we’ve been there.

What We Have Learned

All Defenders will have some sort of mechanical or cosmetic issue unless they were a commissioned nut-and-bolt restoration.  A bargain Defender will always need work.  How much work really depends on the service and maintenance over the years and the history of how it was used.

The truck was “Freshly Painted” before we got it. There was a small area on the bulkhead that looked suspicious so we took it apart. All the way apart.


This is how far we went before we decided that the right thing to do would be to replace the entire bulkhead. Will all builders do this?

Things we look for on all trucks:

1. Mechanical maintenance of key issues (engine, braking system, transmission, transfer case, axles, fuel system).

2. Structural issues (bulkhead, foot wells, door bottoms, chassis outriggers, rear crossmember)

3. External cosmetic issues (panel condition, corrosion, paint, seals)

4. Wheels + Tyres (age, condition, type)

5. Wiring (voltage, condition, after market switches, etc.)

6. Internal cosmetic issues (seats, headliner, safety belt, door cards, upper dash, lower dash)

7. General issues (door mechanics, hinges, steering column, seat boxes, battery, door locks, floors)

While there is charm to having a Defender with original patina, there’s little charm in a truck that needs everything – something that has been abused and neglected.  What’s worse: a truck that has been cheaply painted to look good for photos and to hide rust and bad repairs.  This will never happen at Bishop+Rook.

What’s Next For Bishop+Rook

We will always provide the market with affordable, adventure-ready, Defenders.  With budgets between $15,000 and $150,000, there will always be differences in the quality and finish of each vehicle, but mechanical reliability will remain our top priority.

We’ve invested in expanding our workshop space, which now includes about 13,500 square feet of workshop and storage space and about the same across the UK and Spain.  We stock the parts we need to get the job done the right way.  The simple act of replacing a bolt with the correct one is often ignored or missed.  It’s not much, but it is a reflection of the care we can put into each vehicle because we have the resources to do so.

Our team continues to grow, as we find people with the same passion for refreshing these amazing Defenders for their new lives in America.  We have mechanics, welders, body folks, paint guys, and someone to keep us stocked in all the parts we need.

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