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  #1  
Old 15 Mar 2004
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Old Defender or non-equipped Discovery

I am about 8 months away from a Trans-Africa trip leaving Jan 2005 via West Africa to Cape Town.
The big issue at the moment is the vehicle...

I own a 1993 200Tdi Discovery which has not been modified. Currently only 100K miles on the clock and has never left the UK, let alone been offroad!!

Here's the dilema!
I have been offered a Defender 110 (1990 - 240K miles) fully equipped with tent, awning, dual batteries, fridge etc for about the same cost as modifing my Discovery.

What do I do?

Any thoughts or recommendations?

Cheers
Martin
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  #2  
Old 15 Mar 2004
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Martin,

Go for the 110 - more space and less work to do (a stock disco is a serious liability off-road). If some has overlanded in the 110 things that were supposed to fall of already have, so at least you have a point of reference how well it had been prepared.

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Roman (UK)
www.overlandcruiser.info

[This message has been edited by Roman (edited 15 March 2004).]
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  #3  
Old 16 Mar 2004
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I agree with Roman, however take a hard look at the vehicle and ask yourelf how it has been maintained. Did the previous owners look after it or were they sloppy / lazy? Are the modifications and repairs well carried out or are they poor quality?

Check battery state as well, ask them when the various fluids were last changed. Check the front swivels are greased and steering components undamaged.

also how does the vehicle sit? Are the springs and shocks still good or are they on their last legs?

If you are buying off garage I'd demand that they change all the fluids, regrease wheel bearings and prop shafts and ask for six months warranty. At the end of the day you'll need to do all that before you go so you may as well negotiate it into the price.

Hope the above does not sound negative but there are some good and some frankly shagged-out overland vehicles out there.

Good luck!
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  #4  
Old 16 Mar 2004
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Wouldn't necassarily agree with the others. Depends how many people you are taking / how much kit. If there is only two of you then the Discovery should be fine. If there are more of you or you are carry very large amounts of kit then it might be worth going for a Defener. I would query the benefits of the Defender you have mentioned, 240k on the clock is a reasonable amount of milage for any vehicle. Its one thing for this to be run up on the motorway but another to be done in arduous conditions which will put more strain on the vehicle. You need to have a really good look at the Defender and see wha the general conditions are like. Not much point having a roof tent and long range tanks if the engine packs in.

Also you made the point that buying the Defender would cost about the same as modifying the Discovery. However the discovery mods would be brand new where as how much wear and tear have the defender mods already experianced.

Bottom line, both vehicles will be more than capable of doing the trans africa. Because you are talking about two older vehicles with significant mileage, you possibly need to avoid direct comparisions between the Defender and Discovery in general and compare the specifics of the two particular vehicles in question. Whilst a Defender may be more suitable in general, this one may not be.

Have fun.

[This message has been edited by Toby2 (edited 16 March 2004).]
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  #5  
Old 18 Mar 2004
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for what it's worth - get the 110 and this way you keep a road worthy car for when you return to blighty...

Tony.
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  #6  
Old 19 Mar 2004
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Why don't you buy the 110, take the kit and install it in the disco, and then sell the 110. I recon this is the cheapest way of kitting out, and you'll be traveling with a vehicle you have confidence in.

Rob
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  #7  
Old 19 Mar 2004
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Thanks for all the replies. I am planning on flying up to Scotland to view the Defender before making any decisions.
Cheers
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  #8  
Old 20 Mar 2004
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Good luck on the scotland trip.

To clarify my first post; faced with a choice between a defender and a disco I'd chooose a defender for an expedition. However that decision assumes that both vehicles are in mechanically similar condition.

If the Defender is shagged-out then steer clear however many extras are included.

Also it is perhaps worth carefeully thinking through exactly what extras you want to put on. Its tempting to overdo it and they all weigh some, which in turn adversely effects performance.

If you are after a rooftent and for overlanding I think its a must (from a comfort perspective), then a defender takes a far better spec roof-rack (Brownchurch -LR11 95/110/LF )than a disco. The one mentioned comes with a holder for 4 jerry cans which is useful.

Re the rest of it I'd go for sill protectors (for easy jacking with a highlift), diff guards for when you get airborne by mistake and steering guard. Roll cage is a nice to have if the murram road you are on subsides or you roll in the dunes.
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  #9  
Old 21 Mar 2004
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Hey! Pop in for a toot on your way up (or down) and lets count the cost of our madness! (Or maybe just talk overlanding!)

enzo (at) bundubasher.com

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  #10  
Old 8 Apr 2004
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Many thanks to everyone who posted. All the tips aided my trip up to Inverness to take a look at the Landy. Only 140 000miles on the clock, and to Colin's credit (current owner), the vehicle has been looked after very well and will meet my overlanding needs.
For more information about our trip, take a look at:
http://www.overland-network.com/bigsky
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  #11  
Old 25 Apr 2004
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this is our old landy!

Bought 1997 with c 70k on the clock, no real work or offroading, one careful owner etc.... NOT.

UK to capetown 1998-99 and lots of fun had. email me for more info or photos!

Richard
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