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Old 20 Mar 2003
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Hi Roman,

Both actually.

It's convenient to have sorted car. Aint it.

This is the story:

The first disco I got was an ex 1990 Camel. Looked like a great car with all the expedition stuff etc. And thought I could fix it up for a couple 1000's of euros.

After more then a good second hand would have cost me, I had a car that had a hard time reaching 110km/hrs cause there was fault in the injection pump, the centre diff that wouldn't lock (probably only a small thing) worn gears in the transfer case, and something I didn't trust at all. I sold it, bought a well serviced 1992 disco in good nick and enjoyed a trouble free 20 000 kms with it (where about 8000 on a trip to Algeria, another 3000 and something on a trip to Kaliningrad with 6 people in it).

Getting it ready for a longer trip to West Africa now.

Good thing on the first one was that I learnt quite some mechanical stuff. Bad thing is that I could have traveled a lot with that money
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Old 20 Mar 2003
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Out of two of your cars both looked nice, one was a dud, another OK - probability equal to a coin toss. If Huey follows your rule, what his first LR is going to be - like your first or second LR?

If you have a car rebuilt using genuine parts by an experienced and trustworthy mechanic, you still spend as much as you were buing a little used car, only you eliminate the coin toss.

So, if you want a reliable, dependable transport, don't expect to pay peanuts. It must cost money, but I prefer to pay for something that is a known quantity, rather than pray it will survive by the end of the trip.

Roman (UK)

P.S. I remember having seen recently a private overlanding website with a very telling title: My exploration of LR garages across Africa
Roman (UK)
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Old 21 Mar 2003
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another option as long as you or a friend have some mechanical knowledge would be an auction - there is a good one in Herefordshire, can't remeber the name off hand, but if anyone wants it send me an email and I will dig it out.
Happy hunting

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Old 22 Mar 2003
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Hi Huey,

Both the 200TDi and 300TDi engines are excellent - as other posters have mentioned, they have similar capacities and power/torque outputs, but are quite different in many respects. Many knowledgeable people prefer the 200TDi (I think Land Rover's scandalous handling of the 300TDi cambelt issue tarnished the reputation somewhat).

I would choose a 300TDi other things being equal. It's a more refined engine (in several senses, not just quieter/smoother), and it is still currently in production - has been since 1993 or so. It is very reliable, very economical, and has more than adequate power (though more is always nice).

If it is an early 300TDi, make sure the cam belt modification has been done. Don't run the engine overheated, and use a good synthetic oil changed at normal intervals. It is a very, very good engine for the type of hard work an expedition vehicle does.

Steer clear of the old TDs - they are essentially the old 2.25 diesels with a turbo bolted one.

If you want more power from the TDi, Allisport (and others) do an uprated intercooler for either the 200 or the 300 which ups the power and torque very noticeably (though if you use the extra power - and you will-, the fuel consumption is noticeably worse). The uprated intercooler is a very efficient way of raising the engine output - better than raising turbo boost etc. (It will add extra stress of course - there is no such thing as a free lunch - but there are mitigating benefits of cooler incoming air too).

Later model Defenders had disc brakes at the rear as well as the front. If you are going to go through muddy areas - Congo, etc., then disc are a big plus. Drum brakes wear out FAST in continuous mud - half the vehicles we saw coming out of Zaire (ours included) needed new brake shoes and skimmed drums! It's not a major buying consideration, of course - anyway, you can always swap the rear axle or hub assemblies.

Just a few random thoughts!



Michael & Sandy
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Old 25 Mar 2003
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All this advice has been invaluable - I was initially leaning towards a ex MOD N/A diesel - but have now decided to spend the money on a 300 Tdi. Drove one for the first time last weekend - Things sure have moved on since the series II I learnt to drive in!
Thanks again for all advice

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Old 26 Mar 2003
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I did exactly what you are looking at - bought an ex-authority 200TDi and modified it for overlanding. I'm based in Earlsfield, SW18, so if you want to come and get some pointers, I'll happily show you round.

Before this Landy I had a petrol 2.25 Series III that we spent a year in driving through the Middle East and Asia (about 2/3 years ago). I have to say - if you're only using the Landy for the trip, I'd probably go for a good Series vehicle because they are so easy to fix. However I was lucky enough to have an absolute mint car which had hardly been used, I would probably have a different opinion if the car had not been so good. And back in England, it's unbearably slow, uncomfortable and expensive to run - which is why I traded up to the 200TDi.

Let me know if I can provide any further help - it would be worth your while spending an hour looking over a prepped landy before going out to look at one to buy.


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Old 26 Mar 2003
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Thanks for the offer - I'm sending you a mail directly.


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Old 10 Apr 2003
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The hunt is over!

I am now the proud owner of a '94 110 200 Tdi Hardtop. Solid chassis and bulkhead and runs like a dream - I'm a happy man!
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