Two-time LR owner seeks third round of torture. What should I get?

#1
Hey there folks. I've owned two LRs now: '95 Range Rover Classic and an '86 110 Ex MOD. And I think I am ready to get back into the LR ownership club. I am thinking Disco Series I.

This begs two questions (and maybe more):
1. Do I actually want a D1? If so, what years are best? Does having an OBDII vehicle make servicing significantly easier?
2. If not a D1, what do you recommend?

I am into the D1s because of styling, low price of entry and availability. This would be a third vehicle dedicated solely to adventures so things like creature comforts are of little concern to me (as evidenced by my 110, I like utilitarian). But I'd like, you know, a roof this time.

I'm keen to hear your thoughts. Thanks!
 
#2
96 and up. OBD II makes emissions inspections simpler, can help isolate problems.

A D1 is a slightly more civilized Defender. Everything after that went more towards better road manners than off road prowess. That said, an LR3/D3 is quite capable, but adds a lot of complexity.

YMMV


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stevenmd

Expedition Leader
#3
This. My 96 DI was amazing off road. Be prepared to upgrade the driveshafts if you go with a 3" or more lift. Carry the right spare parts: fuel pump, belt tensioner, etc., and you'll never be left stranded. Having said that, you'll find the 4.0 a tad disappointing in the power department but upgrade to K&N air filter and better spark plugs/wires to get a little more "get up & go". I'd own another one in a heartbeat if I could find one in decent shape and low mileage.
 
#4
1. 96 and up, many point toward the 99 (yes D1's were made in 99) as the best of the best, particularly if they lack sunroofs. As dlm31 noted with the OBDII comment, I think that tends to age better though a well sorted 94-95 will basically just lend to the same troubleshooting you got to do with your 95 RRC in terms of dizzy/rotor/cap/etc.
2. If you don't get a D1; consider the D3 (LR3). A lot of vehicle for the $ though your comments tend to lean away from that given that it will be a 3rd vehicle.

If you do get a D1, throw a good battery charger (NOCO or something) into her to maintain the system as she sits. Ask me why I say that (given that I have a 96 D1, my 3rd D1, that I've built by hand but is now relegated to weekender duties and thus has shown her displeasure most recently by killing off her battery.
r-
Ray
 
#5
If I was to do it again I would get a D1 with a 5 speed if possible, definitely one with no sunroofs.

1995 would be good, as you already had a 95 classic. D1 is fun and much lighter to drive than either 90 or 110. Feels like an older jeep.
 
#6
I agree with most of what has been said here. I am on my second 96 D1 ( teenage son totaled the first one) and have been very happy. The problem you will find with the D1 is they are getting hard to find with low miles, no sun roofs, manual, etc. Also I am starting to have trouble finding parts, especially for the common electrical failures like the air con switch, some of the relays, etc.

If you decide against the D1, I would skip the D2 and go with the LR3/D3. The D2s had lots of engine problems, especially head gaskets that I wouldn't want to touch.
 
#8
I recently made the switch to the Rover world after building/buying several different Jeep Cherokees and a Wrangler. I'm currently smitten with the D1 I picked up. It blends what I liked about XJs and JKs together into one package. So I'd second (and third, etc) many of the positive comments regarding the D1 option. Although, I'm still in the honeymoon phase of my ownership (I've only turned a wrench because I wanted to, not because I had to!), ask me again in 6 months.

I will say don't feel like you need to find a 5 spd based on the previous comments. From my research, the auto seems to hold up extremely well provided it was taken care of. Meanwhile, internet research indicates the 5 spds may not be as robust as their auto counterparts. My 3rd gear syncro gives a little feedback if I don't catch the gear just right and the vehicle only has 108k miles on it.

You can't discuss these old V8s without mentioning headgaskets. So I want to piggyback on your concerns and ask does anyone know exactly when LR switched to DexCool antifreeze/coolant? Mine's a '97 and I just opened the reservoir to find the dreaded pink stuff. I found a MY97 owner's manual online, it makes no mention of needing OAT coolant, just the usual non-methanol comment. Or did I miss it?

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#9
Beautiful truck DailyJeep, love that color!

In terms of the ZF vice R380 (auto, manual trans respectively) the ZF is a very robust unit-& has the benefit of allowing the driver to concentrate on other aspects while wheeling, or being annoying in traffic. The R380 is less robust, true, but also maximizes pulling power out of the 4.0 and tends to bring a lot more smile to the drive. They are also a lot rarer.

Just my $.02 fm having had both.
R-
Ray


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#10
D1 is a great truck but limited cargo space in back. While a 5 speed can be challenging in the rocks, the truck definitely feels more lively than the slushbox. In the rocks, I prefer and auto.

Head gaskets are an issue but really not a hard fix. One weekend and its fixed if you don't send the heads out for work. Keep up on maintenance and fluids and she will keep trucking.

That being said, I am seeing LR3s in the 5k range now! Granted they are higher mileage but not more than a D1. Swap out the airbags and the LR3 is awesome on the trail with minimal mods and tons of cargo. The Jag motor is way more robust.
 

aek50

Adventurer
#11
Spend a little more time and find a D1 with desiel conversion! Really not that hard to find at this point, I know several folks that have them. Make sure it was a quality job and you'll have a special truck
 

stevenmd

Expedition Leader
#13
Swap out the airbags and the LR3 is awesome on the trail with minimal mods and tons of cargo.
Do they make a coil conversion kit for the LR3? If so, who makes it? Price? Thanks!

I remember when - I think it was Nathan Woods who had it - there was ONE LR3 in the US with coils. IIRC, he called it The Storm Trooper.
 
#14
Do they make a coil conversion kit for the LR3? If so, who makes it? Price? Thanks!

I remember when - I think it was Nathan Woods who had it - there was ONE LR3 in the US with coils. IIRC, he called it The Storm Trooper.
They do make a coil conversion for the truck; check out my build thread, mine among many has been convereted (its buried deep in there though, so admittedly you may want to look on NAS-ROW for the reader's digest version of my experience).
Atlantic British, among others, sells the kits that range from stock height to +2 either with OME MD or HD springs (depending on kit).
Price varies based off which one you get. (http://www.roverparts.com/Parts/L319SRK-A)

I'll leave it at that lest we slide too far off the D1 centric nature of the OP's question.
r-
R
 
#15
Beautiful truck DailyJeep, love that color!

In terms of the ZF vice R380 (auto, manual trans respectively) the ZF is a very robust unit-& has the benefit of allowing the driver to concentrate on other aspects while wheeling, or being annoying in traffic. The R380 is less robust, true, but also maximizes pulling power out of the 4.0 and tends to bring a lot more smile to the drive. They are also a lot rarer.

Just my $.02 fm having had both.
R-
Ray


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Thanks for the compliment! I exhausted your Coyote build thread before pulling the trigger on it... so thanks?!!?

I will echo that the manual adds a lot of satisfaction to daily driving. These things are wildly underpowered and I can't imagine slugging around town with the slushbox.

It'll be my first off-road manual vehicle so I'm eager to get out and see how I feel about it then... I wanted to learn something new.