Land Rover Discovery 1998

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In their own words

Always wanted a Land Rover Defender so when I retired and lost the company van I started looking for a general run-around / utility vehicle. Inspected a few defenders but deeply disappointed at what 5K - 6K would buy. Saw an advert on-line and drove 30 mile to an independent dealer to inspect a 2004 discovery 2 landmark edition at £3950.00 and fell in love at first sight. It looks like a big, noisy, slab-sided and sluggish truck yet inside it amazingly comfortable and drives like a limo. It came with 10 months MOT and a 6 month AA warranty but the dealer forgot to mention that the air suspension had been replaced with coil springs, although in truth, having heard some of the horror stories, I would probably have undertaken that conversion myself. 3 weeks into ownership I was driving at about 55 mph on the motorway when everything disappeared in a cloud of smoke and the engine started to run away. Fire engine arrived 10 minutes later and suggested that the turbo had blown and engine was probably scraped. Telephoned the dealer and discovered that he had closed for an extended Christmas break. 2 and a half weeks of misery until I could contact him on the phone all the while wondering what excuses he would make for leaving me with 2.5 tons of scrap. However he rose to the challenge and arranged for a recovery company to take the vehicle to his workshop where it was discovered that the cylinder head was cracked and leaking diesel into the sump oil. when it reached critical level it was sucked back into the intake and the engine ran away. At that time the vehicle had 193,000 miles and he replaced the engine with another with only 95,000 miles. 10 months later it has just gone through MOT having had 2 new rear brake cylinders and 2 new suspension drop links fitted and some welding to the rear chassis at a cost of £730 including a full service. Is it expensive to operate? Yes, painfully so! Am I going to get rid of it? No, Never! Would I buy another Discovery? Yes, in a heartbeat! There simply is no other vehicle to match a Discovery 2 in terms of driving pleasure, except perhaps a range rover.

How reliable do you find the car?

Engine failed after 3 weeks but dealer sorted it without cost to me.

Does the car do everything you expected it to do?

A hard work utility vehicle that behaves like a limo. A real pleasure to drive on and off road. I had heard horror stories about problems with this model but where I live in rural Co. Down there are thousands of Land Rovers so there are sure to be some problems as there are with and brand.
  • How they rated it

  • Reliability: 3 out of 5 3.0
  • Meets Expectations: 5 out of 5 5.0
  • Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 5.0
  • Leslie McCutcheon recommends this car

About their car

  • Fuel type Diesel
  • When purchased November 2016
  • Condition when bought Used
  • Current Mileage 201,000 miles
  • Average MPG 31 mpg