BUY­ING TIPS

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Driving -

1 CHECK FOR RUST

Cor­ro­sion is the big­gest Dis­cov­ery killer. The chas­sis fares bet­ter than the body, but check around body mounts. The body’s weak points are the front and rear whee­larches and the sills. Check be­hind the plas­tic sill cover and whee­larch lin­ings if you can, and have a look at the boot floor.

2 HOW STAN­DARD is IT?

Ex­treme sus­pen­sion lifts and huge tyres look the busi­ness and help off-road, but can ruin on­road road per­for­mance. Subtler in­ter­fer­ences might in­clude bodged im­mo­biliser re­pairs, poorly ex­e­cuted weld­ing, or il­lad­vised tweaks to the fuel pump (look for ex­ces­sive black ex­haust smoke un­der load).

3 DRIVETRAIN IS­SUES

Break­ages are rare but worn axle dif­fer­en­tials are com­mon, and re­place­ments are ex­pen­sive. Lis­ten for whin­ing on the mo­tor­way or clonks when tak­ing up drive. Also, with the hand­brake off, turn the prop­shafts by hand to iso­late play in the diffs or univer­sal joints. Check the front swivels; cor­ro­sion and leaks here spell im­mi­nent MoT fail­ure.

4 IN­TE­RIOR & ELECTRICS

Trim is gen­er­ally hard-wear­ing, though the dash is a bit brit­tle. Sun­roof leaks are com­mon, even with new seals fit­ted, which can warp the trim, ac­cel­er­ate in­ter­nal cor­ro­sion and cre­ate is­sues with the im­mo­biliser; fixes are cheap, but of­ten time-con­sum­ing.

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