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Seduced by the dark side


Ivan
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During my recent trip to Libya some of the shortcomings of my V8 Discovery came to light. Primarily a lack of space due to having to carry 250Ltrs of fuel. So I got to thinking about my ultimate expedition vehicle and this is the list of requirements I came up with :-

1. Powerful but reasonably economical Diesel engine

2. Automatic gearbox

3. Ability to carry over 200 Ltrs of fuel without Jerry Cans

4. Air conditioning

5. Coil suspension

6. Room inside to carry camping kit, fridge etc

7. Ability to fit a roof rack to carry extras when required

8. Budget of around £8000 for the vehicle.

I first thought about building up a 110 as it has all the room you require as well as coil suspension. However, it would mean an engine transplant (possibly a straight 6 4.2 from a T*y*t*) as the 300 Tdi is not really powerful enough (both 300 Tdi's on the trip had larger intercoolers and tweaked fuel pumps). Fitting an automatic gearbox would not be straightforward either. Also fitting Air conditioning is possible but not straight forward and probably not very effective. However, there was one vehicle on the trip that satisfied all of the criteria it's a Toyota Landcruiser (there I've said it now).

Now I love my Land Rovers and think they are superb vehicles but, the choice comes down to either custom building a 110, which will be expensive, or simply buying a Cruiser "off the shelf". I don't like my solution but the more I think about it the more the Cruiser (I can't bring myself to say that word T*y*t* too often :) ) fits the bill.

So comments/suggestions welcome.

Ivan

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Hate to say it....

But

Kinda looks like it's got the offroad ability of a submarine :P

Or perhaps a small house, which of course it is.

Just had a lad come through here a few months ago who had spent fortunes on a Defender somewhere else.

And to say it was shocking is an under statement.

But, after a lot of soul searching and question asking, he eventually went for a brand new imported T*y*ta

Because fo all the reasons you have listed.

Hell, hate to admit it, but they are F*cking good :(

And dare i say it.....

Do not go wrong

Running....

Found door.... :ph34r:

Jim :(

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During my recent trip to Libya some of the shortcomings of my V8 Discovery came to light. Primarily a lack of space due to having to carry 250Ltrs of fuel. So I got to thinking about my ultimate expedition vehicle and this is the list of requirements I came up with :-

1. Powerful but reasonably economical Diesel engine

2. Automatic gearbox

3. Ability to carry over 200 Ltrs of fuel without Jerry Cans

4. Air conditioning

5. Coil suspension

6. Room inside to carry camping kit, fridge etc

7. Ability to fit a roof rack to carry extras when required

8. Budget of around £8000 for the vehicle.

I think the 110, probably was the way to go, it has a reasonably powerful engine, certainly powerful enough to do what you want it to do without completely ripping the car apart on medium/heavy off road, I'm not sure about the automatic gearbox (probably not all that good if you want to do any more complex driving, but granted good for longer journeys - but is it another thing to break), air conditioning does kill the fuel economy some what, but in libya I guess thats a sacrafice you are willing to make. on the flipside, you can get a larger fuel tank for the 110 for not a lot of money, and for a bit more money you can get a second fuel tank. enabling a maximum of well over your 200 litre requirement. As for the other things, then the 110 or the land cruiser are near enough the same, its a box with wheels. but you can fit a lot more in (I think) in the 110. plus defenders are cheap as chips, and are designed with a monkey with a hammer in mind when it comes to maintenance.

IMHO you might not get a particularly capable land cruiser for 8k, but you can get a defender 110 easily for that money, and give it the improved fuel tanks, not sure about air con(how much that adds to price), presuming you already have the fridge, I'll bring the beer.. (sorry, couldn't help myself)

really sorry I can't give you any real prices, but thats easy enough to find out for yourself

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With that spec, it would have to be Land Cruiser 80 series

This is the first link I came across.

A 110 cabin is just not a place I'd want to spend a lot of time - but thats just my preference.

Not in your budget - or mine alas but this would be on my Christmas list

5f048.jpg

Based on 2.5DSE Rangie possibly - seems that one has Rangie seats in it - yum.

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Depends how much you value (or for that matter, have available of) your own time. You're talking about doing a fair bit of work to the defender, whereas the landcruiser is pretty much 'out of the box'. I'd guess in most parts of the world you can get the older, less electronic, versions of either fixed easily.

I love my rangie but frankly if I was heading somewhere I really needed a reliable truck I'd be taking a very hard look at that toyota...

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3. Ability to carry over 200 Ltrs of fuel without Jerry Cans

I think there's a company that does fuel tanks that fit up under the rear bench seat boxes if thats any good

I think streaky has some ( if he's on here?)

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During my recent trip to Libya some of the shortcomings of my V8 Discovery came to light. Primarily a lack of space due to having to carry 250Ltrs of fuel. So I got to thinking about my ultimate expedition vehicle and this is the list of requirements I came up with :-

1. Powerful but reasonably economical Diesel engine

2. Automatic gearbox

3. Ability to carry over 200 Ltrs of fuel without Jerry Cans

4. Air conditioning

5. Coil suspension

6. Room inside to carry camping kit, fridge etc

7. Ability to fit a roof rack to carry extras when required

8. Budget of around £8000 for the vehicle.

I first thought about building up a 110 as it has all the room you require as well as coil suspension. However, it would mean an engine transplant (possibly a straight 6 4.2 from a T*y*t*) as the 300 Tdi is not really powerful enough (both 300 Tdi's on the trip had larger intercoolers and tweaked fuel pumps). Fitting an automatic gearbox would not be straightforward either. Also fitting Air conditioning is possible but not straight forward and probably not very effective. However, there was one vehicle on the trip that satisfied all of the criteria it's a Toyota Landcruiser (there I've said it now).

Now I love my Land Rovers and think they are superb vehicles but, the choice comes down to either custom building a 110, which will be expensive, or simply buying a Cruiser "off the shelf". I don't like my solution but the more I think about it the more the Cruiser (I can't bring myself to say that word T*y*t* too often :) ) fits the bill.

So comments/suggestions welcome.

Ivan

Unfortunatly, you're quite right. A 78 series troopie covers almost everything you want. They come standard with twin fuel tanks for a total of 180litres, are as big as a 110, have a mid size 4.2 litre turbo diesel that is old tech and easy to fix but only average in power & torque, a much stronger driveline than any Landrover, air con that's acceptable (compared to a Defender which isn't), coil springs up front and, outside of Europe, far better parts availability.

What you will miss out on is coil springs for the rear, although conversion kits are easy to pick up, and an auto trans, but you can't have that in a Defender either without it being a custom job.

Of course the big thing you'll miss is that certain...special...something, that only a Landrover has... :D

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With that sort of budget (5k or over), I'd go with a Unimog. No doubt about it.

It'll do more than you want, and be under far less strain doing it.

Al.

My instinct says Unimog too, although not quite so simple to park in the supermarket car park, then of course Unimogs are made by the krauts; is that more treacherous than going over to the japs? :ph34r:

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There are a lot of Toyotas here (Aus) and huge support in aftermarket accessories. The diesel models can be easily be made into a good expedition vehicle.

The performance of the 6 cyl, indirect injection NA diesel is not particularly good and the turbo version is not a lot better as it is compromised by the high compression ratio.

The overhead cam, direct injection, turbo diesel engine is much better, but the early versions have a bad reputation for bearing failures.

The 100 series have independent front suspension, which causes a lot of problems off road. Australia has a 105 series, which has a rigid front axle, but it can't be bought with the good engine!! AFAIK the 105 series is not available in any other country.

It is said that:

God invented Toyotas so that di*k heads don't have to drive Nissans
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Hello Ivan,

During my recent trip to Libya some of the shortcomings of my V8 Discovery came to light. ...

Oh yes, been there, done that ...

I don't like my solution but the more I think about it the more the Cruiser (I can't bring myself to say that word T*y*t* too often :) ) fits the bill.

Don't blame yourself, it's natural progression from weekend offroading to REAL offroading.

Now, for 8k quid you can get yourself a full spec 80 series VX, with F/R lockers, 24 valve 4.2 1HD-FT engine and acres of load space (1.8m x 1.5m x 1.2m with the rear seats removed).

More info on the dark side is here

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Of course the big thing you'll miss is that certain...special...something, that only a Landrover has... :D

Only too true. Land Rovers do have a special character all of their own. For the sort of money I am looking at, as Roman said, I should be able to get an 80 Series VX which has all of the bells and whistles "straight out of the box". I much prefer the looks of a 110 but it would require an awful lot of work to build one up to the spec I am looking for. However, I'll still keep the Disco, 90 and Series III so I don't suffer withdrawal symtoms :P

Ivan

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hate to say it, but it'd be Toyota for me, 8k buys a decent 80 series with, as Roman says diff lockers and reliability that puts Landrover to shame.

having said that i'm on the prowl for a new Defender (or maybe a Disco ) to replace my current 110, which i'll be taking to Morroco next year.... i'm going with the LRO gang so can't realy take a Toyota.......

Edited by freeagent
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  • 1 year later...
Did you miss a bit out here please mike?

Nope he was very serious. Actually I was suprised at his words. He expected problemes with an aged vehicle. He didn't like my reply that my Defender didn't have a hi mileage at 165,000 MILES.

I'd only look at three vehicles for overlanding.

The Defender, 300Tdi of course.

Don't Frontrunner make an under chassis extra diesel tank for the Defender ??

The Land Cruised 4.2 straight six diesel.

The Mercedes G Wagen 100inch or whatever the wheelbase is.

The South Africans bame the coil rear suspension for so many Defender rolling. I blame bad stowage.

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The blokeychap that runs Safari Overland has a nice G wagon (SWB) with a 300GD lump in it. It's the cheap no frill version that was never available over here. Nice bus.

To be honest Mike, poor stowage is the norm for most overlanders, blame lack of thought, misinformation, Camel, Vince Cobley, whoever. Fuel, Spare wheels, Roof tents, hi-lifts etc, it's always going to be an issue.

The more I think about it the more a trailer starts to make sense for about 80% of terrain/distance. Obviously not the vastly heavy, hugely overengineered cr*p that is pervading the market, but a sensible lightweight, easy manouverable unit...

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Does Kai have the ultimate overland setup then?

post-21-1183809143_thumb.jpg

He has 3 batteries, two alternators, a big coolbox, space to sleep in the back, seats for 5 and a big straight 6 diesel under the bonnet. It's on leafs but seems far smoother than a LR because the body is mounted RR style on rubbers. I have to admit I like it as a truck although it would be interesting to compare side by side with a Disco, which is the LR it's closest to. Toy axles on a Disco could be a good combo...

I have to say Dave's suggestion of a trailer is a winner, I towed the one in that photo for a couple of days and it didn't even notice. We drove miles off road with it and it just doesn't care. You can put all the big akward carp like spare wheel, jack, jerry cans etc. in it and then they're not clogging up your car or weighing you down, which leaves the back of the landy free for living in / carrying people.

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