The interior layout, fit and finish
Once you're inside the Land Rover Defender Hard Top, you’ll struggle to tell you’re in the commercial version. Well, that is until you look over your shoulder and realise you can’t see out of the non-existent rear side window.
Because of that, the large side mirrors are a saving grace, as is the optional ClearSight rear-view mirror. At the touch of a button, the mirror becomes a digital screen that shows a live camera feed from directly behind the car, so you can still what's behind even when the storage area is loaded to the roof.
The Hard Top’s dashboard is very much fit for purpose, with chunky buttons you can operate even when you're wearing gloves. With entry-level trim, you get analogue instrument dials, but if you move up to S trim they are swapped for clear digital instruments that you can configure to display information in a variety of ways. The only other commercial vehicle with digital instruments is the VW Caddy Cargo.
The Hard Top’s interior gets all the standard Defender’s back-to-basics interior design. Certain structural elements are deliberately exposed, including the front crossbeam that functions as part of the dashboard and also as a passenger grab handle.
There are loads of exposed bolt heads dotted around the interior, emphasising the vehicle's characteristically utilitarian feel, and most of the surfaces you touch are covered in a rugged-feeling rubberised material. Compared with the more plush feeling Land Rover Discovery Commercial, the Hard Top’s interior feels as though it will stand up better to a hard working life.
In terms of infotainment, the Hard Top gets exactly the same 10.0in touchscreen as the regular Land Rover Defender. It responds swiftly to touches, is crystal clear and the graphics look quite impressive, too.
There’s also lots of functionality, including standard Apple CarPlay/Android Auto integration so you can mirror you smartphone's screen on the display. It is, quite simply, in a different league to the infotainment systems offered in the majority of commercial vehicles.