Published on July 24th, 2021 | by Subhash Nair0
This Land Rover Defender Kahn Chelsea Is Going For RM388K
Is a Kahn Defender conversion worth doing on your ageing Land Rover?
We all know that classic Land Rover Defenders have become collector’s items. They were already highly sought after even when they were still available for purchase brand new. With the replacement model taking such a stark departure in terms of its product philosophy, it’s clear that the legacy Defender models are only going to climb in value and stay up there.
However there are the odd custom-made Defenders out there that exist too. Many of these were made back when the Defender was still being produced. “Automotive Fashion Houses” like Kahn would then dress these machines up, give it a bunch of added equipment and a new name and mark the final price up.
The question is: are these more collecteable and valuable than the original, vanilla Land Rover Defender models? Well, we should say that value in the used market can be quite subjective. It’s always a question of “willing buyer, willing seller”.
We should also note that the original Land Rover Defender is quite an unsophisticated off-roading tool. That was its original design intention and enthusiasts loved it because of its honest, no-nonsense capability and handsome design. Would adding anything to that increase its appeal? Or would it do the opposite?
Now we pose another question: if a Defender was converted to a Kahn Chelsea truck by its owner, does the cost of the upgrades go into the resale value of the vehicle or not? We all know how 1990s JDM sportscars tend to command higher prices the closer they are to stock condition, but does that rule hold true for the Land Rover Defender?
I personally, don’t think so for a few reasons. The first is that the Defender isn’t particularly rare just yet. It only just went out of production a few years ago. It’s also a lot more utilitarian and unwieldy to be as appealing in stock form. Finally, I do also think that these upgrades are still seen as actual improvements over the base product.
One unit went on sale in Malaysia recently. It was uploaded to Facebook Marketplace by Niven Motor.
Here’s a list of parts and how much the owner allegedly spent on them:
- Kahn Wide Track Arch Kit – RM34,055
- Kahn 20″ Mondial Retro Wheels – RM18,026
- BF Goodrich Tires – RM13,500
- Kahn Military Front Grill – RM3,361
- Kahn Diamond Military Headlamps – RM10,117
- OEM LED Lights – RM4,466
- Kahn Bonnet Vents – RM2,801
- Kahn Side Vents – RM2,695
- Kahn 30mm Wheel Spacers – RM1,299
- TerraFima 50mm Suspension System – RM4,872
- Chelsea Truck Co Spare Wheel Cober – RM2,806
- Full Sound Proofing And Heat Proofing – RM15,000
- Croytec Aluminum Door Handles – RM1,624
- Croytec Aluminum Air Cond Vents – RM568
- Croytec Aluminum Roof Grabs – RM1,624
- Croytec Aluminum Meter Dials Surrounds – RM1,218
- Power Windows For Rear Passengers Doors – RM2,500
- Kahn Panoramic Tempered Glass For Windows And Rear Quarter Glass – RM5,684
- SlickShift By SyncroGear Foe Easy Gear Shift – RM1,624
- ECU Remap By Bell Auto Services UK – RM5,059
- SyncroGear SuraSpec Clutch Kit – RM3,654
- Alpine Sound System With Amp And Subwoofer – RM5,000
- Spraypainting Santorini Black And Satin Black – RM8,000
- Full Nappa Leather Interior With Kahn GTB Seats – RM52,000
- Kahn Aluminum Billet Steering Wheel – RM7,900
- Custom Order And Custom Made Auto Sliding Side Step – RM9,500
- Optimill Hinges, Window Blocks, Waterjet Wiper – RM11,000
- Bilstein Shocks, Superpro Bushes And Bowler Shifter – RM10,500
- Airbagman Air Suspension Supply – RM22,500
Apparently the total cost of conversion was more than RM300,000! Today, this car is being listed at RM388,800. Underneath that Kahn bodywork is a 2.2-litre diesel Defender with a manual transmission, made in 2013. These models are seen going for RM160,000-RM250,000 on the used market. Is it a value buy, based on how much the parts are worth? We’d like to know what you think.