Freelander 1

Discussion in 'Cars, Bikes 'n AFVs' started by beetroot4000, Sep 24, 2012.

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  1. Thinking of buying an older model Freelander, it'l be a 2l Diesel one.
    Anyone owned one and have any problems?
    Or anything I need to know about?

    I know the 2001 model changed from a Rover to a BMW engine and the BMW is more powerful and fuel efficient.

  2. Big problems with the ird and other running gear..have a look on Landy zone..don't be fooled by people removing a prop to "improve fuel economy", basically the 4wd system is fucked and they've bypassed the problem rather than fix it
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  3. You don't buy a Land rover for reliability, you buy one for personality.
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  4. Hateful car, steer clear, plastic crap and neither a sports or utility vehicle, if you can get a long test drive you will happy when it ends. Get an Audi a4 estate or a shogun.
  5. I have had one for 9 years after three head gasket changes a new ird it's running well never go stuck in the winter.
    If you have plenty of spare cash go for it if not stay well away.
  6. Ravers

    Ravers LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Everyone I've spoken to who's owned one of these has suffered. Mate at work bought one of the last Freelander 1's (possibly an 06 or even an 07?), it was the BMW Diesel one so theoretically should've been sound.

    The day he went to pick it up, he was obviously excited and was talking about 'running it into the ground' like a proper Landy workhorse.

    It was dogshit, endless snags, eventually something major broke on it (prop shaft maybe?) he kept it for around 6 months before getting rid for a 5 series estate.

    Look at something Jap, the Nissan X Trail does everything a Freelander does and more.
  7. Freelander? Land Rovers attempt at a hair dressers car. Don't.
  8. Look at the Toyota Rav 4. Does all the same things as a flealander without shitting itself every month.
  9. Neither fish nor fowl. Landie people disown them as "not one of ours" and for good reason. Scouse build quality+parts bin design condemned it from the start.
    Early 4x4 system ate tyres and did it's best to brake it's self in urban situations, ironically where it was supposed to be most of the time. I actually fancy getting one to make an off road buggy with one day as the system should be good for that. The suspension won't be though.
    Also don't assume that a BMW engine means no breakdowns . Three years ago I went through 5 series hell with a six month old BMW.
  10. Just to add to my comments. A neighbour has a 13 yo freelander that he abuses on a daily basis in a countryside environment and he loves it. Bits fall off a lot more than a Landie owner would expect though.
  11. I had one of the first with the BMW engine in and it was a complete and utter bastard, as soon as something was repaired something else would break and it eventually annoyed me so much that i sold it for scrap at a massive loss and still felt better when watching it being dragged away.
  12. Couple of things to look for.

    1. If you are going for the diesel, then you don't need to worry about the head gasket issues, they affect the 1.8 Petrol. Underpowered, and the engine is the Rover K series engine. No changes were made to it, so it overheats regularly, taking out the head gasket. Changes can be made to the cooling that will sort out that issue once and for all.
    2. Two flavours of diesel. the pre 2000 L series, and the post 2000 TD4. Generaly the L series is considered more reliable, and the TD4 more refined. That's not to say that the TD4 is unreliable though. Both very good units.
    3. 4wd system is a little suspect. It uses a front Intermediate Reduction Drive (IRD) to transfer power to the rear. The power goes up the front propshaft, through a Viscous coupling Unit (VCU) into the rear prop shaft, down to the rear diff. Problems come when the VCU is not changed at the correct intervals. Land Rover consider it to be a service item lifed at 70k. It must be replaced. If not, then stresses are put on to the IRD causing transmission wind up. When the IRD goes, it tends to go catastrophically.
    4. Be careful. Go for a drive and see if the VCU gets hot. If it does walk away, or be prepared for a couple of hundred quid at least.

    Have a look at these sites.

    Ashcroft Transmissions

    Home - Bell Engineering

    If the front propshaft is removed, then you will have a problem with the IRD. however, some sites are offering IRD's with a blanking plate, others offer an IRD with the front propshaft attached but none of the working parts inside the IRD. Hard to spot!

    Autobox is best, it's a JATCO unit so well built. The rest of is is usual LR quality. Expect leaking sun roof (get one without if poss), Window regulators that fail, rear window issues etc. All part of the fun.

    Don't listen to the LR knockers, you'll have a super vehicle, but you'll need to keep on top of any issues.
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  13. Bought a petrol 1.8 Freelander 1 earlier in the year - cheaply and with a years ticket.

    So far:
    Window mechanism packed up the first day - get the repair kit of fleabay or get creative with bicycle gear shift cables and some crimps.

    Sun roof had been siliconed up for a good reason - and trying to open it with the electric lifter broke the seal and I've not got it sealed properly ever again. Drain tubes are blocked. Wet seats!

    This weekend had to angle-grind the torsional damper from the VCU - there was CLANG! whilst driving along a fairly gentle track - I thought the exhaust had gone but had a heavy metal ring sitting round the VCU shaft. Got it home - slowly - jammed back in place with some twigs.

    There's a warning in this thread about taking off the front prop shaft - google up "Mondo Mode" for lots more background on why/how/if.

    Exhaust soon broke one of the supports - found that the front two bolts securing the header to the underside of the sump were missing - with a couple of studs that was sorted and the exhaust doesn't flail around quite so much - but it's a big long lump on not many supports.

    Big downside is the lack of space in the back - A metre cube does not fit, and the back to front load space is pitiful. I used to be able to get 6 foot lengths of timber in the back of the Passat estate - not a chance in the Freelander - there's lots of wasted space the way the passenger seats fold down. Consider a Discovery if covered load space is important - I wish I had.

    Good points - it's dead easy to drive. The Hill Descent System certainly works a charm - but I suspect it could get you into a situation which might require another vehicle/winch to recover from. Excellent view of the road over the tops of other cars, except for very wide "A" pillars which can completely block out a joining vehicle at roundabouts.
    Lots of flat surfaces - which for my work and needs is really good - the CRV (which was another possible) has rounded bits everywhere inside - nowhere to put stuff down or mount kit.
    Petrol economy: mixed views on this - short journeys with lots of stop-starts are bad. If I'm moving around the site, and short journeys then it's sub 20mpg. However - on a recent 800 mile round trip the overall consumption was around 34 to the gallon - but that did include a lot of motorway at 55mph.
    (yes i'm that old cnut toodling along in the slow lane - well - it's called the "slow lane" for a reason innit? If you don't like it get on past - I'll be catching you up anyway at the roadworks when nobody lets you back into the inside lane. )

    You can pick up 10 year old ones really cheaply at the moment - it's a lot of car for the money, but perhaps not the best way to spend it.
  14. Not a lot of love for them then.
    I had a drive in a 2003 one last year and thought it drove really well and had plenty of power, that being said I currently drive a Suzuki Escudo which leaves a lot to be desired in every aspect.
    Problems with the IRD and gearbox/diff type problems are things that worry me, head gasket isn't the end of the world to replace yourself but the IRD troubles turns me off a fair bit.

    I was wanting something a bit newer and better on fuel and heard the TD4 would do 35-40mpg so was happy to hear that.
    But if it'l break down all the time I might look else where.
    I like the P38 series Range Rover but they ain't to great on fuel.
    I'd love a 110 Defender but they're a bit pricey and not really best for my needs, easy too fix though, no electronics to worry about.
  15. Had an R reg one from new, so probably one of the first off the line. It had many, many warranty failures in three months. Apart from the amazing shrinking diaphragm causing power loss at 80mph on the M4, there were sensor failures, wiring looms nipped by body panels, transmission failure...Eventually took it into Hartwell's on an AA low-loader, where I made much noise. Luckily i had spoken to the contracts manager at my company and a colleague at LR Defence. so got them to take it back and provide a "betterment"...a Series II Discovery which ran beautifully, as did it's successor which I sold earlier this year.

    The later FL1s were okay but still suffered from Monday/Friday car syndromes. However the Disco IIs were pretty rugged. So don't buy an FL get a Disco or ifn you want a smaller 4x4, try a Forester.