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deep last won the day on December 3 2015

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About deep

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  1. deep

    The new Defender is now pointless

    I read recently that an early Toyota (cough) Prius is now typically good for around one mile on its old battery! Last year I had a drive in my friend's Nissan Leaf, his daily commuter. It's his third one and he pointed out that battery life does significantly drop over time, so useful life is not high. This leads to massive depreciation, making electric cars the preserve of the rich (yet, here in NZ, those rich people don't have to pay road tax on their electric playthings, while us poor mortals pay plenty to subsidise them, grr). He also said Nissan take part worn batteries and use them in solar "farms", where lowered storage capacity is less of an issue. For all that, something like a Rivian or Bollinger would work well for a work vehicle for what I do - provided I could charge it at the office on the very rare occasions that I go there (150 mile round trip). The maths is different for a business.
  2. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    Dreamers often spend their lives aiming to purchase the impossible. If a vehicle provides enough inspiration, some of those dreamers eventually buy it. I'd guess that plenty of people here would still be saving for a new "old" Defender if the goalposts hadn't got shifted. If the new car appeals in the same way, the same people will buy it. If not, other people will be the purchasers. Or nobody. So, of course, it does matter. (I'm super-unlikely to buy it myself. I despise electronic "aids" and it will bristle with them.) Anyhow, interesting article which picked out things many of us could have already surmised. One thing it looks like they missed is that the size of the brake discs IS visible in one of their pictures and it looks very much like the car will accept more reasonable rim sizes. On the downside, that stud pattern is tight and little! I think, at this stage, there is so much information out there that the only surprises are likely to be the smaller design details - and how much ability there will be to customise.
  3. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    Right here is the problem: apart from the inappropriateness of a Ford Ranger for the sort of driving I sometimes do, my 110 is a hardtop, set up as a camper van. As far as I know, you can only get a Ford Ranger in NZ as a crewcab. Same for a heap of other brands, though some do a flat deck. The little Suzukis are too little (and too low) for a lot of work. That really only leaves one model of Toyota that could fulfil that function but, frankly, yuk! It may well be that the new "Defender" will actually come in some useful body shapes and they may well be able to undertake a lot of the tasks of a working vehicle but I, for one, would take a LOT of convincing that they would do that without costing an arm and a leg to keep fettled and reliable in a hard working situation. Still, by the time I could afford one, they might have ironed out the bumps... Nah, I'll stick with my agricultural 110 until one of us dies or the law locks one of us away (they already hate older Land Rovers here)!
  4. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    That's actually the most promising pic I've seen yet. This is fun!
  5. deep

    2.5L Diesel vs. 2.5L Petrol

    I'm genuinely amazed! That's so much worse than my 18J that I'm glad my spare 19J motor stays in the back of the shed as a parts donor. Even less incentive to fit it now.
  6. deep

    2.5L Diesel vs. 2.5L Petrol

    You'd better fix your 19J then! Seriously, that sounds pretty bad.
  7. deep

    2.5L Diesel vs. 2.5L Petrol

    I have owned 110 Land Rover hard tops with both engines. I agree that the petrol is much nicer in many respects but the one I own now is diesel. That is largely because the fuel economy is considerably better (25-30 m.p.g. diesel versus 16-19 m.p.g. in the petrol over the same range of conditions - probably an even bigger difference if you are off-road a lot) but also because I love the farm tractor idle-all-day feel of the diesel. I've put a lot of sound-proofing in my diesel but it's still as louder as my petrol was. The same sound-proofing with a petrol would make for something approaching luxury! The petrol is far less demanding on batteries/starter motors. I've had two Land Rover diesels and everything has to be right to start them reliably on a cold morning, sigh. Performance on road isn't radically different but, looking back, I used to drive the petrol a little faster than the diesel (60 m.p.h. versus 55 m.p.h.). Both will cruise faster faster than that but those are the comfort zones I have found. Off road, the petrol has it all over the diesel. While the ordinary 2.5 diesel produces more torque below 1,400 r.p.m. than all other (proper) Land Rover diesels, you can drop the revs to a few hundred in the petrol and it won't stall. The petrol is also stronger at the other end of the rev range. That flexibility makes a far bigger difference off-road than the charts can tell you. Essentially, you end up driving the diesel one gear lower, which loses impetus. However, the diesel has far better engine braking. By the way, I find the 200 T.D.i. worse than either in some off-road situations as it has a smaller comfortable rev range, which is not what you will often read here! Maintenance isn't bad for either. Both need clean fuel filters (that Weber carb has tiny idle jets). In my cars, neither use(d) significant oil but I feel more inclined to do early oil changes in the diesel (just 'cos it goes black so much quicker). The petrol does have an ignition system to keep an eye on. It's not hard though. The diesel injection system is quite reliable but is a giant pain when you need to do something with it. At the end of the day, both suited me very well indeed and I love(d) driving them but sheer economics mean I wouldn't be able to use a petrol as much, if I had one. In fact, I sold my nicely tweaked Stage One (3.9V8, RR transfer gears, Disco seats) to buy my 2.5 diesel 110 and couldn't be happier with that decision.
  8. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    "Defender Sport? Isn't that an automotive oxymoron?" Great quote from comments in that article! To be fair, though, some folk have chucked a lot of horsepower in Defenders and earlier Land Rovers and survived...
  9. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    He meant they're much better for driving under the fruit trees on the back lawn! Honestly, you'd think people here would know better. Sigh.
  10. deep

    Improving Defender ride quality

    It's not hard to do both. Riding well on dirt roads and tracks means NOT bouncing off line when you hit a bump! On the other hand, a lifted, softly sprung vehicle will feel very vague and mushy at high speed on any surface, unless it's been designed very carefully.
  11. deep

    Improving Defender ride quality

    Well, a manufacturer wants things to be good and Land Rover standard suspension is that. However, they also have to turn a profit (fat chance with the last Defenders but definitely on the cards originally). Part of that is balancing cost and performance. Some after-market suspension components, particularly shock absorbers in this thread, can be considerably more complicated (i.e. expensive) than standard and CAN be an improvement, on and/or off the road. My previous Stage One V8 had adjustable Munroes (not necessarily considered brilliant as a brand) which were wonderful when I put the 3.9 and higher gearing in and found myself cornering at decent speeds. My Mercedes has Bilsteins on the front which definitely tame the handling. On the other hand, I think my 110's shocks are standard and I have no complaint. That doesn't mean I couldn't spend silly money and feel an improvement. Even aftermarket springs have their place. When I drove a heavily laden Range Rover across and around Australia, I shelled out for heavier duty rear springs. Rover had never intended their car to work that hard, so it was appropriate to do that and it made a huge difference to handling. Trip over and all the gear removed and it felt like a truck! Getting the right springs for your load and good quality shocks will always be best. In most scenarios, Land Rover have it right but they lean less to travelling extra-light on motorways than heavily laden in rougher conditions.
  12. deep

    Improving Defender ride quality

    The first 110 I used regularly (work car) and my current 110 both have the Boge ride leveller. The ride was/is very decent in both cases. My current work car is a (groan) Mitsubishi Pajero i.o.. Independent front suspension, rear beam on coils with fancy five link setup. Alloys and lighter tyres than my 110. It manages to be both harder on choppy bumps and more mushy on more rolling surfaces than the old truck Land Rover. Even with 255/85s on the 110 and the rear sway bar removed. I think this is largely due to the softer springs the ride leveller allows and, of course, the long and well-controlled travel. A 110 should ride well, no reason at all for it not to ride like a slightly firmer Range Rover, except maybe on very rough roads where the extra tyre weight would be felt. I forgot to mention, I travel modestly loaded and usually run 30 p.s.i. in the front and 34 p.s.i. in the back - less if venturing far off-road. The three BFG KMs have been on three vehicles and done maybe 70,000km and wear is nice and even. I'm definitely not in the high pressure school, especially having had a fright on a wet road when the garage over-inflated the Mitsubishi tyres recently! I stopped using that garage...
  13. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    Well said, Mr.(?) Drumstick. The notion expressed here that ordinary Defenders are not very good off road tends to be made by people who either never use them or limit their opinions to very artificial situations in which traction control is highly favoured. It actually takes quite an extreme situation to cross axle my 110 - by which stage the lovely little Freelander may have bellied itself anyway. Or not. There is a reason the Freelander didn't quickly provide the base for a Defender replacement (while the more competent D3/4/RRSport probably will, sigh).
  14. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    Good grief! First off, I never said Land Rover don't know what they are doing nor that their new vehicles aren't very capable. I don't have that odd attitude. (Nor do I have a Defender. My 110 is older than that.) Think, though, how good a Land Rover could be if it combined the electronic trickery with a suspension system that kept four wheels on the ground... On the other hand, I have done a lot of off-road work over the years and really, really wish your Freelander wasn't half a planet away so that I could rub your nose in it! Your "different line" just is not available once a few full-size vehicles have been through the inevitably narrow tracks we have to face. Not to mention the rocks I thread my way through along the river every summer. I don't want to argue but, seriously, that is a completely unrealistic attitude. Freelanders may be wonderful in their place but they have little wheels, low ground clearance and high gearing. Physical constraints.
  15. deep

    Thoughts and musings on the new defender

    Until you hit the first decent rut or have to straddle a rock or piece of wood more than eight inches high! Get real.

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