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Discounting the fact that he missed 4 of the engines fitted into Defenders by a Land Rover factory. Namely the 2.8 BMW straight 6, the Isuzu 3.9 turbo and non turbo and the 2.0 MPI (as fitted for the Italian market)

https://www.autoexpress.co.uk/land-rover/defender/100597/the-best-ever-defender-engines

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Oh well, it fills some space I suppose...

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Best Defender engine.  That is funny.  Let's be realistic.  They are all carp.  All much too small  That is why Land Rover lost the market.  The inability to put proper engines in their vehicles.

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I have never driven a Tdci Defender, but I would hope that the latest engine should be the best. At least in theory anyway.

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Define best.

Then decide.

The best engine is the TDI200. Powerful, reliable, maintainable, economical

The best engine is the 2286 petrol 5 bearing. Smooth, torquey, simple.

The best engine is the tdci. Clean. Powerful. Efficient.

The best engine is the V8. Sounds awesome.

But, in all honesty, the best engine was the 1.6 l petrol in the series one. Without that engine, this discussion wouldn't be happening.

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What did the 300 Tdi do to be omitted from the list ?

 

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Posted (edited)

Half the engines were not fitted to the Defender - yes the previous Land Rover 110/90 etc but not the Defender.  I guess the author is assuming the previous 110/90 was a Defender which it was not.

The Isuzu engines were never fitted to Defender only the Landrover 110 (and Perentie Variations) and the Series 3 Stage 1 109.

 

 

Edited by garrycol
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22 minutes ago, Arjan said:

What did the 300 Tdi do to be omitted from the list ?

 

I think it ate it's own timing belt?

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We have had several 300 Tdi's and think they're quite good..

However, the Mazda 3.5 Tdi is for me the best....

 

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16 hours ago, Red90 said:

Best Defender engine.  That is funny.  Let's be realistic.  They are all carp.  All much too small  That is why Land Rover lost the market.  The inability to put proper engines in their vehicles.

Totally and utterly true. 

What is really frustrating is that the engineers were developing serious engines in the sixties and seventies, but the projects were cancelled so that the focus was on jet engines for rover saloons. 

They even had a direct injection turbo diesel under development.

 

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1 hour ago, Gazzar said:

Define best.

Then decide.

The best engine is the TDI200. Powerful, reliable, maintainable, economical

The best engine is the 2286 petrol 5 bearing. Smooth, torquey, simple.

The best engine is the tdci. Clean. Powerful. Efficient.

The best engine is the V8. Sounds awesome.

But, in all honesty, the best engine was the 1.6 l petrol in the series one. Without that engine, this discussion wouldn't be happening.

I would define best as an acceptable balance of power/torque, clean, efficient, smooth and reliable.

The more reliable the engine is surely the less importance can be placed on maintenance (except basic service)? There will of course have to be compromise somewhere and I think that is where the subjectivity creeps in. Which engine fits all of that criteria best if it was marks out of 10 for each? I think a Tdi will score well but be let down on the marks for not being clean nor particularly smooth compared to later engines.

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100% agree.

It's subjective, no wrong answers.

Except the 2286 diesel. Bloody awful engine.

I know, not a defender engine, but was in the predecessor vehicles.

 

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1 hour ago, garrycol said:

Half the engines were not fitted to the Defender - yes the previous Land Rover 110/90 etc but not the Defender.  I guess the author is assuming the previous 110/90 was a Defender which it was not.

The Isuzu engines were never fitted to Defender only the Landrover 110 (and Perentie Variations) and the Series 3 Stage 1 109.

 

 

Thats the same issue I have with all of the written reports saying '60 years of the iconic defender coming to an end'. We have had the defender since 1990 so it was  more or less16 years when it ended. They didnt seem to understand the 110/90 and the series vehicles before that. Really bugs me!

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Imagine how they feel when we refer to their BMW golf as "just another eurobox".

 

 

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Can't be bothered to read the article but "best" in terms of what?

User serviceability?

Dealer serviceability?

Longevity?

Cost of spares?

Availability of Spares / in what market?

Performance / and for what task?

Economy?

A bloke who maintains his own 25 year old Defender used for leisure purposes and commuting is going to have different views to a utility company running a fleet of late model 2.4 & 2.2 Puma's purely for business purposes.

Haven't read the article as "best" means different things to different people.

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The article makes the case for best for each engine and then gives it opinion at the end. 

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6 hours ago, reb78 said:

Thats the same issue I have with all of the written reports saying '60 years of the iconic defender coming to an end'. We have had the defender since 1990 so it was  more or less16 years when it ended. They didnt seem to understand the 110/90 and the series vehicles before that. Really bugs me!

I agree 100% with your sentiments but considerably less with your mathematics!  What's a decade between friends?

Having had numerous Rovers, Land Rovers and Range Rovers, I find myself happiest with the 18J in my 110.  That motor would rarely make a list because it's only a military modified normally aspirated 2.5.  It makes me smile every time I use it.  Part of that is because it is NOT designed for high speed road use, so it keeps the chassis well inside its comfort zone.  It's a happy driving experience and cheap too.

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6 hours ago, reb78 said:

Thats the same issue I have with all of the written reports saying '60 years of the iconic defender coming to an end'. We have had the defender since 1990 so it was  more or less16 years when it ended. They didnt seem to understand the 110/90 and the series vehicles before that. Really bugs me!

I guess it depends on wether you think of the change to coils as development or a totally new model?.

I tend to think of it as just part of the continual development - but with a name change. So the 90/110 was sort of the Series 4, the Defender being the 4a.

When you see those Stage 1’s with the 90/110 bodywork permanent 4wd from the RR running gear, but with leaf springs it feels like the missing link. It was evolution. Also those very early 90’s have a distinct series feel about them with the lift up handles, galv cappings, and very basic interiors.

Didnt they only call it the Defender because they turned the model into the brand to make other models?

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2 hours ago, deep said:

I agree 100% with your sentiments but considerably less with your mathematics!  What's a decade between friends?

Haha. Oops. Quite right!

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Not a bad article, as it gives pros and cons for each engine. And it does state they've included pre-defender types to make the list more comprehensive.

I also agree with the end verdict in favor of the TD5. I loved mine, if I ever have another Defender it will be a TD5 (I'll reserve the V8 for a Range Rover). The tdci, while more modern, lacks character and the tdi always felt sluggish and unrefined in comparison. That special 5-pot sound just suits a special car like a Defender. Often driven by special people, with special needs. 🙂

Filip

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Well the best engine is the one that works best for your application.

But, the original application for a land rover is for it to be a versatile working vehicle. So you need torque low down the rev range, low fuel consumption, easy to fix in the field and reliable. It's got to be the TDI. Any engine needing electronics to run can be removed from the list for the above requirements. More power from td5 or tdci  is nice on the road, and a V8 sounds lovely, but was a land rover designed to drive on the road? No, it can do it, as it is a versatile vehicle, but for the original design brief, the TDI ticks all the boxes.

But that is just an opinion. 

Daan

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7 hours ago, Escape said:

....the tdi always felt sluggish...

 Filip

Depends what you’ve got it in 😀

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I'm often baffled when people talk about TDis having low rev torque.  My experience is that they just die if revs drop too low, unlike the V8s, four cylinder diesels and even normally aspirated 2.5 diesels.  Don't they need at least 1,900 r.p.m. to pull strongly and at least 1,400 r.p.m. to pull at all?  I'm not against them as they were very special in their day.  I just find them terrible off road, in situations where the revs can drop off.

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