New Defender Rage/Hate Thread

The ONLY way JLR will get Defender numbers to the fraction of Wrangler is by offering a "Plain Jane" stripped down utility version with minimum bells and whistles at a $40k price tag. It would take years of reliable operation on the road AND trails to get that line to move upward to a fractional margin of the Wrangler. The Defender is NOT in the same market as the Wrangler in any sense and until JLR or D-C decide to close the gap in either direction, there is no point at all even arguing about Jeep/Defender comparison.

Once the Jeep diesel option is out later this year for Rubicon Wrangler/Gladiator and it has some mass production bugs worked out in its second year; that gap is going to be even bigger; too bad it's not coming with a Cummins or I would already have a Gladiator on order for my "work" opportunity vehicle.
 

Recommended books for Overlanding

National Geographic Road Atlas 2020: Adventure Edition [U...
by tional Geographic Maps
From $17.58
Sailing Alone Around the World: a Personal Account of the...
by Joshua Slocum
From $26
Lone Rider
by speth Beard
From $16.38
Bushcraft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Sur...
by Dave Canterbury
From $9.99
4WD Driving Skills: A Manual for On- and Off-Road Travel
by Vic Widman
From $17.27

krick3tt

Adventurer
I saw one on the road in front of me at the light yesterday. It might be very capable but sure has the look of a quality mall cruiser.
 

mpinco

Expedition Leader
JLR, as is the entire auto industry, is severely challenged by global economic health and the distruptive aspect of the transition to high levels of technology adoption. Love or hate, that is the reality. So to the rumors that Tata has JLR either up for sale or as a minimum searching for 'partnerships', the CEO is leaving and more cuts are announced. Wouldn't be surprised to see SVO as hardest hit and maybe a model or two discontinued. I do think the coronavirus is the trigger for further global slowdowns.
 

DieselRanger

Well-known member
Well. . . here is another perspective. We all agree that Lexus (and Toyota) are the high water mark of reliability. In 2003, when Toyota was producing stalwart vehicles like the 100 Series Land Cruiser, the 4.7 Liter Tundra, the 3.4 Liter Tacoma, and others, their defects per 100 vehicles was 201. So, if you will hear me out, a modern Land Rover is just as reliable as a vehicle built by Toyota in 2000, and measured in 2003.

The narrative needs to gain some perspective. All manufacturers are significantly more reliable than ever before, and Land Rover is no different.

Great point - they have slashed their problem reports in half in roughly 15 years. JD Power also gave Land Rover the "most improved brand" title in initial quality for 2019.

Lexus has bettered their numbers only by about 50% (rounding up), suggesting there is a limit to quality in manufacturing.
 

gatorgrizz27

Active member
Will people please shut the hell up about “JD power surveys” and “Land Rover reliability” until there are actually known problems with the new Defender? It’s getting really old how every single conversation just turns into that.

We get it, you think it’s unreliable, you don’t want one, maybe you’ll trust it after 5 years but probably not.

As has been said many times, most of these issues are small electronic niggles that don’t affect the vehicle driving from point A to point B.
 

DieselRanger

Well-known member
FWIW - when SO and I went shopping JD Power surveys weren't even consulted or thought about. Period. The JD Power Dependability Survey is for issues while under warranty and really if you look behind the scenes it is probably heavily financed by ......... the automotive industry marketing departments. We could care less what the marketing department is tryinig to sell us, we had our short list. As owners of only LR trucks we took a step outside the LR family leading up to our current LR4 and shopped all manufacturers and ended back as LR.

As noted by ExtremeTech Technology Causes Big Problems for Automakers. Ah, you already knew that. In addition that infotainment technology is already mostly obsolete within the first year or two of ownership and will stay that way because we are not going to pay a subscription to keep it up to the latest revision. Sorry auto makers, I don't need you in my pocket all the time. I am not going to enable your revenue stream that is already built into my smartphone subscription.

So, the short list comes down to functionality, how it supports our lifestyle needs and cost does come into play. I would consider the new Luxury Defender down the road if the offer much better power train options. We are at 6000'+, tow a loaded camper over 12,000' mountain passes, use the camper as basecamp and explore the high country where cell service is zero. The 2.0L is out for that workload profile while the 3.0L MHEV is too complex and fails both the upfront cost and long term cost equation. For us old farts it feels and looks like a 70's engine in the early days of emission controls. The reviews I have seen confirm that integration issue. It is what it is for early Luxury Defenders. We will wait and see what the future brings. I suspect the industry is going to look a lot different post-SARS-2. When we are in the market again we will shop all manufacturers and evaluate to our ever changing short list of functionality must-have's. Who knows what the future brings.
One, pay no attention to JD Power or Consumer Reports if you wish. JD Power bases their numbers not in what automakers give them but on direct consumer surveys. You'd think Tata would have paid some of their billions to improve their marquee brand's image if it was rigged, no? Never mind Tata, what about Jeep? Millions of buyers do pay attention. Personally I spent almost all of my time on owner forums to get an idea of real problem reports and to get an idea of how widely they seemed to occur. I was far more concerned about what I saw on Jeepforum than I was about anything I read on the myriad Land Rover forums - I was really surprised at the volume and pervasiveness of mechanical problems on Jeeps and of the lack of common, big problems on Land Rovers. I was most surprised at how aggressive Jeep social media people were on jeepforum to get owners of new vehicles to take their complaints offline and deal directly with them. That did not inspire confidence in Jeeps, and I really wanted to like the JGC Trailhawk.

Two, with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay you no longer need worry about infotainment being obsolete. It's updated when your smartphone is. No map updates to pay for. And JLR has committed to free SOTA updates for the firmware. Forever? No, but they're mostly bug fixes anyway - it's the smartphone apps you care about most.
 

JeepColorado

Active member
Great point - they have slashed their problem reports in half in roughly 15 years. JD Power also gave Land Rover the "most improved brand" title in initial quality for 2019.

Lexus has bettered their numbers only by about 50% (rounding up), suggesting there is a limit to quality in manufacturing.

It's great that they've slashed their numbers in half- any company should be proud of that, but they are still at or near the bottom relative to everyone else now. While I appreciate what Scott Brady's message is- it's a unique way of looking at it- but it doesn't change the fact that while LR has gone up; so has everybody else and LR relative to them is still at the bottom.

Having problems year after year like this says something about the culture of an organization.

To dismiss LRs reliability ranking as mostly infotainment based is not being candid about it's issues with complex suspension systems- one of the supposed key advantages of the new Defender
 

JeepColorado

Active member
Will people please shut the hell up about “JD power surveys” and “Land Rover reliability” until there are actually known problems with the new Defender? It’s getting really old how every single conversation just turns into that.

We get it, you think it’s unreliable, you don’t want one, maybe you’ll trust it after 5 years but probably not.

As has been said many times, most of these issues are small electronic niggles that don’t affect the vehicle driving from point A to point B.
Scott Brady acknowledged in his Defender podcast that the elephant in the room with LR is reliability and durability. You couldn't have a full and honest conversation about LR without discussing it. I think for someone like him as a journalist it would border on being unethical if you didn't. I get why it's frustrating if LR is your brand, but I for one am a fan of dealing with the whole truth.
 

Recommended books for Overlanding

Long Way Round: Chasing Shadows Across the World
by Ewan McGregor, Charley Boorman
From $10.99
999 Days Around Africa: The Road Chose Me
by Dan Grec, Dan Grec
From $19.95
Long Way Down: An Epic Journey by Motorcycle from Scotlan...
by Ewan McGregor, Charley Boorman
From $15.96
Tschiffely's Ride: Ten Thousand Miles in the Saddle from ...
by A. F. Tschiffely
From $9.99
4WD Driving Skills: A Manual for On- and Off-Road Travel
by Vic Widman
From $17.27

mpinco

Expedition Leader
One, pay no attention to JD Power or Consumer Reports if you wish. JD Power bases their numbers not in what automakers give them but on direct consumer surveys. You'd think Tata would have paid some of their billions to improve their marquee brand's image if it was rigged, no? Never mind Tata, what about Jeep? Millions of buyers do pay attention. Personally I spent almost all of my time on owner forums to get an idea of real problem reports and to get an idea of how widely they seemed to occur. I was far more concerned about what I saw on Jeepforum than I was about anything I read on the myriad Land Rover forums - I was really surprised at the volume and pervasiveness of mechanical problems on Jeeps and of the lack of common, big problems on Land Rovers. I was most surprised at how aggressive Jeep social media people were on jeepforum to get owners of new vehicles to take their complaints offline and deal directly with them. That did not inspire confidence in Jeeps, and I really wanted to like the JGC Trailhawk.

Two, with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay you no longer need worry about infotainment being obsolete. It's updated when your smartphone is. No map updates to pay for. And JLR has committed to free SOTA updates for the firmware. Forever? No, but they're mostly bug fixes anyway - it's the smartphone apps you care about most.
The JD Power may be surveys but the forums are mostly used for people to b*tch about their issues. No issues? Well no comments. Honestly, could care less about a JD Power survey.

My point infotainment is that it was near the bottom of our list of must have's, almost off the list. Does it have a radio? Yes. OK, done.
 

gatorgrizz27

Active member
Scott Brady acknowledged in his Defender podcast that the elephant in the room with LR is reliability and durability. You couldn't have a full and honest conversation about LR without discussing it. I think for someone like him as a journalist it would border on being unethical if you didn't. I get why it's frustrating if LR is your brand, but I for one am a fan of dealing with the whole truth.
I get the reputation aspect, and I’m not saying they don’t have problems. My point is that they make no distinction between “the Bluetooth doesn’t recognize my phone sometimes”, or “I get a check license plate light chime on the dash, but the light works”, versus “It spun a rod bearing at 32k miles”, or “The ECU fried itself, leaving the vehicle immobile.”

My experience with the brand has been very good. Wife’s 08 RRSC in 145k miles has needed one air strut and one ride height sensor, besides wear items (brakes, tires, battery, and now front end joints/bushings). Both air suspension parts have plenty of notice before they failed, remained driveable the entire time, and were simple to replace.

My 08 LR3 in 175k miles has needed the same stuff any other vehicle would. Radiator, brake switch, blower motor has started squealing sometimes, door lock actuator has died, and I had a water leak that was solved by replacing the windshield cowl.

I’ve purchased parts to repair issues on both vehicles that threw codes or chimes and then never reappeared, so they are still sitting in boxes.

One of my employee’s wife drives a RRS, he said they put a suspension compressor on it and that’s all.

My dad drives a 15 LR4 with 50k ish miles. It had a leaking AC condenser from the factory, zero issues since.

I previously drove a Discovery 1 for years, it had no major issues besides weird British electrical problems, and wear items like wheel bearings, brake pads, and having the radiator rodded out. The only time it left me stranded the fuel pump wiring corroded after giving me plenty of warning. I was too lazy to fix it at the time and had it repaired in 15 minutes the next day. I drove it back and forth from a Texas to Florida regularly.

Anything mechanical can fail, on an Expedition Overland episode they had a Toyota break a coil spring and bucket. Obviously modern Land Rovers tend to me more complex, but it’s often a matter of resetting things and glitches, like turning your phone off and back on.
 
Top