Bespoke’s Builds: Atlantic auto shop turning Land Cruisers into luxury vehicles

New Glasgow, Nova Scotia — A Nova Scotia company was founded on a passion for bringing the old back on the road in style. 

Donald Clarke and Jamie MacGillivray were neighbours in New Glasgow, N.S., before deciding to turn their love of Toyota Land Cruisers into luxury car mechanical shop Bespoke Motor Company. This restomod-centred auto repair shop takes classic Land Cruisers and restores them with modern parts and technology so they run and act as a new 4X4. MacGillivray says there is nothing that compares to the Land Cruiser on the roads today. 

“The Toyota Land Cruiser from the 1970s is the go-to vehicle for all remote and difficult locations where reliability and performance are critical,” said MacGillivray. “The Land Cruiser is the pinnacle of mass production and the best product to come from that methodology. People realize that you cannot mass-produce quality.” 

Bespoke Motor Company is a first-rate mechanical shop, with CNC equipment and it’s also a paint shop. Clarke says that their boutique is a rare find as most vehicle brands are just spitting images of what came before, at his company every vehicle is custom made for the buyer and what they want. 

“Anything anybody wants on this configuration, we’ll build it,” Clarke said. “The underside of these trucks is going to look as good as the top of trucks. Our goal is perfection, and I think we can achieve it with the people we have.”

The small town mechanical shop has two full-time employees and eight part-time keeping the boutique running smoothly. Clarke says that what started out as two neighbours with a dream slowly became their dream job with hard work and perseverance. 

“What used to be a hobby is now a job, but it’s a job like no other,” he said.


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