2003 Land Rover Freelander Reviews from North America

2003 Land Rover Freelander SE 2.5L 174 Quadcam 24 valve aluminum V6

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 2.5L 174 Quadcam 24 valve aluminum V6 Automatic
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 3 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 4 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 2 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
3.8 / 10
Distance when acquired29320 miles
Most recent distance80000 miles
Previous carGeo Prizm

Summary:

POSH!!!

Faults:

This vehicle was purchased as a used vehicle at the purchase price of $21,000 ($28,400 when paid off, which is about $800 shy of its new sticker price). The Carfax Report was sterling (no marks against it).

I am the second owner. The records show it has been serviced. I have also kept up with the maintenance and having it serviced as well.

*Manufacturer Warranty up to 50,000. NO Extended Warranty is available on this model vehicle if purchased as a *used vehicle and not from the original dealership. **Competitive Extended Warranty Companies DO NOT OFFER any extended warranties on this particular make and model. I have been contacted by 3 separate companies in the past wanting to offer me an extended warranty, only to find out that none of them will offer an extended warranty on this make and model. None were able to offer an explanation.

Upon taking ownership, the front brakes were shot after driving only 100 miles.

At around 52,000 miles:

The back passenger window regulator stopped working.

The sunroof started making a horrible 'off track' sounding noise every time it was closed, to the point you had to manually force the sunroof shut from the outside while someone on the inside pressed the 'close sunroof button' in order to bypass the grinding sound.

The back headliner detached from the ceiling in the cargo/backseat overhead area. I had to use paint stir sticks to smooth it and support/hold the liner back in place until I can afford to have it 'professionally' repaired.

At 67,809 miles I had the SUV checked for strange noises coming from engine area. Also performance seemed sluggish/moody at times, like it lost its 'pep.' SUV checked out OK.

At 71,000 miles, I had the timing belts changed and serviced. SUV kept at dealership for 10 days. I had to pay for a rental car.

At 71550 miles, the SUV started jerking horribly, like I had just been rear-ended. Dealership tested all possible diagnoses. Suggested faulty transmission that likely could require internal repair, second and third gear shift hard, suggested changing transmission fluid AGAIN. This cost money as well as the cost for another rental car for 9 days.

At 74,925 miles, while driving back from another state, the SUV began jerking again, and this time at a traffic light in the middle of rush hour afternoon traffic, it broke down. I had to have it towed to the nearest dealership. I had to pay to stay in a hotel for 3 days. It was myself and my 2 year old son. It was determined that the fuel pump AND the transmission had to be replaced. No warranty. THAT costs A LOT OF MONEY!!!

Since that breakdown, there has been a recall on the fuel pump. Currently the vehicle still runs. The new 'wrong with it' now is I continuously smell anti-freeze. The technicians cannot locate a leak, yet I have to fill the cooling system reservoir about every 2 weeks (sometimes more).

General Comments:

This SUV is the WORST vehicle I have ever had the misfortune of owning. It states on the window decal that it's 'the best 4x4xFAR' It can't even handle a pothole without a gag or a sputter. I do not have any confidence in this vehicle when I have to go anywhere, because it has had so many problems already. These are issues seen in vehicles typically that have been driven over 100,000+ miles, and this SUV has been babied.

Another quite annoying mark against this SUV is the backseats and cargo area are actually quite confined. This is very much in comparison to a sardine can.

I am very disappointed in this model. Although the Land Rover commercials tout how tough, reliable and rugged these vehicles handle rough terrain and off-road performance, like I said, this model cannot even handle a pothole without triggering another 'problem'

I wish Land Rover would replace this model with anything else but this particular one. Even better, offer an exchange for another vehicle completely different. I would drive a cheapo car even before ever owning another one of these SUVs. I have owned 3 SUVs in the past (all Isuzu) never a problem. Then a used Geo Prizm bought at a car auction with 89,000 miles, and it made it to 197,000 miles before having a transmission rebuild - before that - NOT one problem!

I have nick-named my SUV Posh. Although the word itself offers a fashionable, prestige-like connotation; my SUV's name Posh stands for

Piece Of SH--.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 16th December, 2009

1st May 2011, 21:38

Once again, poor dealership service and incompetence is causing more and more people to hate Land Rovers. Don't get me wrong, they are not the best vehicles on the road, but they are not half bad as they are made out to be. I admit, my stereo volume knob and power windows had issues, but really, since I work on all my own cars, it's run just fine, just like anything else on the road. The dealers ruin these cars.

Owner of an '03 and '04 Freelander (98K miles, and 129K miles, no major mechanical troubles).

2003 Land Rover Freelander S 2.5 liter

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2002
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 2.5 liter Automatic
Performance marks 2 / 10
Reliability marks 0 / 10
Comfort marks 4 / 10
Dealer Service marks 1 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 1 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
1.6 / 10
Distance when acquired5000 miles
Most recent distance59000 miles
Previous carToyota Celica

Summary:

Garbage

Faults:

Three window regulators.

Variable intake manifold at 48,000.

Thermostat.

Ignition switch.

Passenger rear door actuator.

Coolant tank cracked.

Radio acts up intermittently.

Catalytic convertor and exhaust needs replacement.

OEM brakes lasted only 15,000 miles.

Fuel pump at 58,000.

Oxygen sensors at 59,000.

Brake lights and rear fog lights are reversed.

Starter at 50,000.

General Comments:

The only good thing about this vehicle is that it rides good.

Maintenance is horrible.

If the timing belt breaks while the car is running, you might as well throw the car away, because all the valves will bend.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 30th May, 2009

30th May 2009, 15:53

Instead of Freelander, call it the Freeloader.

1st May 2011, 21:55

You know that your "invincible" Hondas are the same way regarding timing belts. But who's calling Hondas poor?

3rd May 2013, 23:16

The difference here is that the Freelander has THREE timing belts (one big one that drives the water pump, and two little ones on the other end) and a very short service interval on these items (60,000 miles, according to Land Rover). Hondas usually have a longer interval (90k on most, I believe?) and they will typically go well past their interval; a rather forgiving trait for owners who are oblivious about such things.

Average review marks: 5.4 / 10, based on 11 reviews