Toyota guy looking at making a switch to a LR


I've owned a Disco I and an LR3. I much prefer the LR3, and that may be because I am not working on it every weekend. The LR3 has been dead reliable minus little quirks, but it always runs, and it always gets me where I want to go, and back.


@Newhue. It's not totally fair to compare a luxury 4wd to a utilitarian 4wd, totally different animals. But I get what you're saying, the boxy shape of the defender is awesome for overview.

To the OP. Being adventurous has got nothing to do with what vehicle you own and use to go out and explore the out. You don't have to hang out with the yota crowd if the ones you dont do the things you like to do. Going away for a while and be self relient means you need a good reliable base vehicle. Yours doesn't sound too bad. But if your mind is set on a Rover, be sure to test drive them well before hand. And read up on them, scroll back a page or 2 in the LR section here on this forum. There's a topic about the problems with the D2.

I drive an old series rover but it has been totally transformed. There's no way you could compare it to anything LR has produced, besides it still sort of looks like a Rover. I like it. It's old, it leaks water in, it's drafty and noisy as heck. But there's no other vehicle that makes me smile as much when I'm driving it.
I was thinking about buying a 5door Y61 Nissan Patrol, turn it into a single cab trayback and build a camperbox for on the back. I dropped that idea after a while when I had a good long thought about it. Even though the Patrol would be WAY more comfortable and luxurious, I know the smile on my face wouldn't be as huge. I'm going to turn the Rover into a trayback to be able to put a camperbox on the back :).

Anyway. If you'r mind is set on a Rover. I would seriously consider the D2 instead of the LR3. A less complicated vehicle with fewer (potential and possibly expensive) issues. Very comfortable, cool looking and very capable.

David Harris

Expedition Leader
On the capability of the LR3 versus the earlier Rovers: I have personally been on a few trail runs where I saw a fully built LR3 with 33's and a rear locker get stuck repeatedly in places where I drove right through with no problem in both my stock Range Rover Classic and Discovery I, no lockers, stock suspension and on 31 inch tires. It did not appear to be driver error either, but rather the LR3 getting hung up underneath due to the wheelbase or lack of suspension articulation. I have heard many here and elsewhere say the LR3/LR4 platform is as capable as an earlier live-axle Rover, but after seeing what I have seen on multiple occasions, I wouldn't back that up myself. Don't get me wrong, I love the LR3/4 concept and they are definitely leagues ahead in comfort and on road performance, but the earlier ones in stock form can out-perform the LR3 in modified form in my personal experience.


Several of my friends that have had both a D2 and an LR3 prefer the 3.

I still have a soft spot for the D2, but I doubt I'll ever have another one. My current D1 does alright and an LR3 or 4 may be in the cards down the road.


@Newhue. It's not totally fair to compare a luxury 4wd to a utilitarian 4wd, totally different animals. But I get what you're saying, the boxy shape of the defender is awesome for overview.

This was no Luxury LC, it was the povo pack with manual everything and vinyl floor. Has this big dozy 4.2 normally aspirated diesel motor in it.

I had 5 mates all with Defenders on this recent trip. All us Landy nuts giggling at the shot cummings of the Land Rover, and that LR could have, should have, but didn't. All of use have been on two 5000 mile desert trips. Non of us had mechanical issues at all. However we did find two Land Cruisers travelling with a 90 Defender who told us his two mates cars were have all sorts of issues, nothing major but things seizing, leaking, or stopped working. All just hear say really. But many non Land Rover drivers seem to seize any negative story they can find regarding the marc, and fail to ever acknowledge that LR's can be and are reliable. Instead they say LR's travel in packs to help each other out when they break down. I guess LR's are in the blood or they aren't. There a million reasons and stories as to why. None of my landy mates are selling I have to add, we have to much fun taking the mickey out of ourselves and our much loved Landies.


You sound like where I was at approx 3 yrs ago when I bought an LR3 and sold my Tacoma 4-door TRD -- although my Taco was just 2WD.
My wife and I were getting into camping/overlanding a lot more, and in my case, the 2WD was limiting -- hate to turn back just when things start getting interesting.

The main reason we got an LR3 was because there were some bear attacks in campsites in areas we visited (really an aberration, but it got in my wife's head), and an LR3 easily folds down rear seats and the cargo area will accommodate a double air mattress, so it's easy to camp in the vehicle. In fact, we don't do that much, but it's nice to have the option. We could have made an FJ Cruiser or Wrangler work in a pinch, but it seems they have a market bubble, in terms of resale prices, whereas an LR3 was simply more affordable. After 2 1/2 yrs of adventures, we're very pleased with the LR3.

Given your topic, you might be interested in some camping/adventure reports I've written here that address the topic of great camping trips in 4 corners area in a Land Rover.

Hunts Mesa:
Utah Canyonlands / Maze:
KofA Wilderness:
Swansea ghost town:
Vermillion Cliffs:

As was previously mentioned in this thread, if you stay on top of maintenance and aren't afraid to do some wrenching, an LR3 can be reliable - at least it has been for me. There's a good online community for DIY troubleshooting and maintenance/repair. I've done all fluid changes (diffs, xfer case) myself, but had an indy shop do the transmission flush. The only other thing I've had done at a shop was bushings, and that was solely due to bad timing when I noticed it just before a Mohave Trail trip and I had available money in the car maintenance budget. (I.e., a couple local LR3 guys have done DIY control arm replacement and said it's not terribly difficult). Also replaced a couple air suspension shocks and a height sensor. Fixed a leaky drain from the sunroof and other misc. I was never a mechanic kind of guy, but when I started to get into this hobby more seriously, I figured I better learn how to work on the vehicle.

If you do go the LR3 route, I'd be glad to provide some more suggestions about IID tool (for monitoring, diagnosing and resetting ECU related things), links for tire considerations, etc.

Good luck, and see you on the trail!


If you have any desire to hit back country, get a land cruiser. A fzj80 with lockers.

Or if you want to mild wheel and hit the mall, get a l322 Range Rover.

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by Mr Graeme Robert Bell
From $20
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Expedition Leader
I disagree on this. I find my 2010 Defender excellent to drive for 5, 6, or 8 hours. Yes it's a long day but I can walk afterwards, collect fire wood, or set up camp easily. I find if the door handle rubs on the thigh, or the hand brake rubs on the calve than I am slobing. I don't fine the door card too close either and the hand brake makes for a great foot rest. I find Japanese truck quite the opposite, I get sore knees from my legs flopping outwards because all you can do is slob in them. And I find after just two hours it's hard to get out of them. Initially I found the Defender awkward and unusual to sit in because they are different to everything else on the market. But once you have got your head it they are fine, if not streets ahead. I accept each to there own however.

you must be 5'-2" and wear a size 36 jacket.


Expedition Leader


get a 100 if its about the adventure, and not what people see you drive. easy to mod, will do what you want on trails, great on road, reliable inside and out.

while an early disco is a defender done right.. or righter... if its about looks get a d90 wagon and suffer the ergonomics.


Expo God
There's confident overlanders who drive what they please, and then there's Toyota owner's :ylsmoke:

Just get whatever you want. Don't like it, sell it. You'll need mechanical skills any way you go.


New member
I personally love my LR3 (Or Discovery 3 as it is here in England) and got it for similar reasons as you.
Young family wanting to go exploring and wanting a bit of comfort too. The '3 Ticks all the boxes and realistically the "reliability issues" people talk of are just about keeping on top of general maintenance and if you are able to carry a small box of spares you'll be able to fix just about most things.

Look after it and it will get you wherever you need to go and back in total comfort. The space you get in it is huge and the heated seats front and back are a godsend.
Loads of accessories available and a great community around them.

Just go for it, what have you to loose?


Expedition Leader
5' 10" 95kg

You're not permitted to do that. You can't start with English and switch to metric. That's an iso9001 violation. This website will be burried in usless paperwork to clear that database mess. t's either in stones or pounds now mother****er