FROM THE DRIVER'S SEAT

Land Rover AFRICA Magazine - - FROM THE DRIVER'S SEAT -

Chat­ting to Land Rover own­ers about a pos­si­ble re­place­ment to the De­fender is a lit­tle like can­vass­ing opin­ion from a Hil­lary or Trump sup­porter. Those for or against tech see things in black and white – or maybe Land Rover green, but def­i­nitely no grey. Those ‘for’ tech fully get that cars to­day are sig­nif­i­cantly more ca­pa­ble than at any pre­vi­ous time in the his­tory of the au­to­mo­bile. New, hot Range Rovers reach a 100 clicks in a sliver over 5 sec­onds, then their in­built-tech takes over on the dunes and they drive through tal­cum-soft sand as though it were a Gaut­eng e-tolled high­way.

Those against, and there are many, swear by the sim­plic­ity of the old De­fender de­sign. A de­sign that al­lowed for easy re­pairs on the fly and com­po­nents that could be fit­ted by owner-me­chan­ics while on tour any­where in Africa.

Per­son­ally, I am rather pro tech. The re­li­a­bil­ity of high-out­put en­gines has grown ex­po­nen­tially and a smidgen of com­mon sense (over­load­ing, over-revving and in­fre­quent fil­ter and oil changes cou­pled with, let’s call it ‘driver er­ror’) can cure pretty much most of­froad mal­adies be­fore they be­gin. The up­side is a com­fort­able drive, big sav­ings on fuel and, yes, in­creased ca­pa­bil­ity with­out hav­ing to re­sort to ve­hi­cle mod­i­fi­ca­tions, which start to stress un­re­lated com­po­nents and re­sult in your Toy­ota-own­ing bud­dies tak­ing the piss when you are left on the side of the road. Yes, I know re­venge is sweet, es­pe­cially when you get to tow them home or at the very least out of the mud and the sand, but a break­down is a break­down, and it’s of­ten ex­pen­sive and is no fun at all when your wife is whin­ing and the kids are cry­ing and it’s get­ting dark ...

So ru­mour has it that the De­fender re­place­ment is go­ing to be the high­est tech Landy yet. I am keen to hear what you think. Please email your thoughts to an­ton@landy­mag.co.za (Sorry An­ton buddy, but I get a sense your mail­box is go­ing to be full :-) ).

En­joy the read! An­drew Mark chair­man

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