You Say

Why don’t we fea­ture 1.8 Free­landers?

LRO (UK) - - Contents -

Hav­ing been an avid sub­scriber and reader of LRO for many years, I had to write to ex­press my dis­ap­point­ment re­gard­ing the Freelander 1 buy­ing ar­ti­cle in the Septem­ber is­sue. I’ve been (and still am) a diehard De­fender fan for over 20 years and have owned (and still own) many, par­tic­u­lar the early 110s.

How­ever, I re­cently res­cued an early Freelander 1 (now called Ken) from the breaker’s yard. With a bit of DIY span­ner­ing he was soon back on the road and through the MOT, and has served us well (ad­mit­tedly with a few re­pairs along the way) for the past 18 months.

Based on this ex­pe­ri­ence, I was look­ing for­ward to the Freelander 1 ar­ti­cle but found ref­er­ence only to the Td4 vari­ant. Ken and his more pow­er­ful V6 sib­ling were com­pletely ig­nored.

Now, I ap­pre­ci­ate the 1.8 en­gine has a bad press and is never go­ing to be pop­u­lar but with an up­graded head gas­ket and proper ser­vices, we’ve found it to be a per­fectly good run­about, dog car­rier and gen­eral work­horse. Given the govern­ment’s downer on diesel, should we not be look­ing again at th­ese much-ma­ligned mem­bers of the Land Rover fam­ily? For a few hun­dred quid, you get into the Land Rover scene with a quiet, com­fort­able, roomy five-seater with a heater that works, and in which you can have a chat at 70mph on the mo­tor­way all day.

I’m old enough to re­mem­ber when Se­ries Is and Range Rover Clas­sics were worth more as scrap metal than cars, a po­si­tion the petrol Freelander finds it­self in to­day. I doubt it’ll ever reach the lofty heights of th­ese early icons, but have we really learnt so lit­tle? Come on, LRO – show the poor Hip­pos some love! PETER HILLER

Most Freelander 1s still in ac­tive ser­vice and avail­able to buy are Td4-en­gined, so that’s what we fo­cused on. De­spite a few grem­lins and a fond­ness for fuel, I en­joy driv­ing my own 1.8 petrol three-door and we do have a sim­i­larly-en­gined 5-door that ed­i­tor Neil road ral­lies. I agree; one day early Free­landers will be­come clas­sics too.

Mark Sav­ille

The 1.8 K-se­ries can be re­li­able, says Peter

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