1973 Land Rover Series 3 88" 2.25p
Good size, simplicity, availability of parts and engineering
It's an old car from a different era. Its bound to have faults.
BUT.. all in all its held up pretty well.
The transmission is pretty shot. A fairly common problem with these.
Engines are all but indestructible (knock on wood)...
Bodies are aluminum alloy.. so they look good for their age.
Frames are trouble with rust. Mine's fine.
Compared to modern cars. It rides horrible.. it's incredibly underpowered and is very temperamental. They have a reputation for always needing something worked on. But also have a reputation of not leaving you stranded.
It performs (0-60 etc) poorly by today's standards. But its really more than you need. With an optional overdrive it is comfortable if not safe at 65mph. It just takes longer to get there than some.
It's louder than one might expect, even compared to its jeep brethren.
Manual steering is quite well assisted with the large steering wheel and gear ratio.
Looks big but is actually quite small. Not much bigger than (mere couple inches in length and width) than my wife's BMW Mini Cooper.
They are well thought out.. everything you need nothing you don't. Drive/ride like tractors.. practically has a tractor engine in it. Low horsepower, but glugs along from idle with nearly its full compliment of torque right from the line.
Working on it is pure simplicity. The entire vehicle can be disassembled with an adjustable wrench, a pair of pliers and a couple screwdrivers. If you're having trouble taking something apart.. it's because you're doing it wrong.
With their low power and sturdy chassis, they are quite reliable.
Must complain at one serious design flaw. The use of both SAE style bolts and nuts and british standard.. basically plumbing thread with funny sized hexes. It's not 14mm, it's not 9/16, it's not 11/32... or anything.. it's 9/16W.. stupid crap. A 5 piece witworth set of wrenches will run near 100 dollars US.. and sockets similarly. Near unavoidable for any engine/transmission work. Adjustable wrenches only go so far.
Parts are incredibly cheap. Aftermarket (non Land Rover brand) parts are not necessarily the best quality, but very cheap. Similar to the VW Beetle.. so many were made that the parts companies were able to make a living replacing parts.
That being said.. there are several parts that are no longer available or rare, but usually substitutes in the form of "not authentic but will fit" are available.
Not a reasonable daily driver, not really worth enough to be considered a "collector car". But a good thing to have in the garage to tinker with. Maybe get the 109" and use it as that truck you keep around to move a couch or get some lumber.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 15th May, 2008