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Is your Land Rover Defender not macho enough? Add some rust

It isn’t called tin worm for no reason. Once rust starts corroding your metal, often an unwanted lesson in science in awkward spots on your car, it’s very difficult to stop the process. So, imagine our surprise when we came across a Dutch company that’s offering rusty metal trim for the new Land Rover Defender.

Heritage Customs, a Netherlands-based fabricator, is offering owners of the new Defender an opportunity to age their SUV prematurely by fitting rusty panels where the standard tread-plate trim is found on the bonnet and front fenders. There are actually four other finishes available; aluminium, bronze, copper, and brass.

Pricing and specs: New Land Rover Defender promises to be ‘toughest yet

Is it real rust?

Although the actual trim panels on the Defender are made of plastic, the look is achieved through the use of metal paint that gets oxidised afterward.

The four panels will set you back roughly €1 685 (R24 000), but that’s only if you want to keep the originals just in case you want to sell your Defender or something. If your look is permanent, then Heritage Customs will pay you €500 for your old parts.

The rusty finish on customised vehicles is by no means a new trend. The aftermarket scene is full of rat-rods with rusty bonnets, fenders, and doors. Sometimes the entire vehicle is covered in the tell-tale orange-brown hue. Why you would want rust on a brand new vehicle like an Aluminium-bodied Defender is a question we can’t answer though.

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