Legend has it the outline of the original Land Rover Defender was created on a beach in Anglesey. Rover engineering director Maurice Wilks sketched the shape in the sand and showed to his brother, Rover MD Spencer.
That was more than seven decades ago. Now, to mark the upcoming 70th anniversary of Land Rover, the firm has recreated the original ideas brainstorm, with a twist – by doing it 2,700 metres above sea level in the snow of the French Alps.
Snow artist Simon Beck was charged with creating an outline of the original Defender with his walking boots. 20,894 steps and 10.2 miles later, the artwork was complete: a giant drawing of the Defender in the snow of a mountainside.
Fittingly, Beck got to the location of the snow art by… driving a Defender up the side of La Pagne.
The stunt has been revealed in the build-up to ‘World Land Rover Day’ on 30 April, marking exactly 70 years since the original Land Rover debuted at the 1948 Amsterdam Motor Show.
Beck was suitably on brand once his drawing was complete. When he’d caught his breath, he said: “Making my snow art requires endurance, accuracy and strength – all attributes shared with the Defender.
“Its iconic shape is so simple and recognised across the world; this must be the most recognisable piece of art I’ve ever made.”