12th Jun 2002, 05:51
I own a 2000 Disco V8 auto which has given me good service over 43,000 km. I normally travel at 130km/h on highways and at this speed roadholding, braking and noise is good considering the vehicle mass and high centre of gravity. (Not nearly as good as my Volvo S40 T4, but then there are horses for courses.) Average fuel consumption has been 5.19km/l. The vehicle tows a Jurgens exclusive caravan of 1300kg (unloaded) comfortably regularly. Once or twice a year it tows an Echo off-road trailer (750kg) to remote areas in Botswana were deep sand tracks are the norm at crawling speeds of 20-40km/h. All without a problem.
Dealer service in South Africa is not good, failing to notify me of two call-backs.
27th Sep 2002, 16:04
I was until recently an employee of a U. K Land Rover main dealer. In my experience of dealing with Land Rover owners I an now in firm belief that the majority of Land Rover's were purchased for the wrong reasons. For example, why would anybody buy a Discovery primarily to go shopping in with the only off-roading the car will ever do is that the rear wheel clips the supermarket grass verge now and again? Landies are made for traversing rivers, tackling steep inclines, cutting through boggy fields and towing caravans. Please stop giving your land Rover dealer grief about slight rattles and creaks and get out and enjoy your vehicle in the manner it was intended.
10th Oct 2002, 11:49
The last comment from the ex-employee of Land Rover was the best ever written and sums up the 4x4 market today. I hardly ever see any muddy 4x4's anymore, they are all full of kids and drivers who probably don't even have a clue what four wheel drive actually means! It's really sad to see any 4x4 just driven on road and never allowed to do whats it's actually designed to do.
I have just bought my first 4x4, a Daihatsu Sportrak and go off road several times a week and its going to get some heavy use during my first shooting season. I already am saving for a Disco and can't wait to buy one.
There should be a law against buying a 4x4 unless you actually want to use it off-road.
26th Oct 2002, 14:56
The ex-employee of Land Rover makes a fair point, but the author of the review has taken this on board. However the question of poor quality build has not been answered. For £37k I would expect far better build than this.
14th Jan 2003, 10:22
My V8 is the GS model and not the ES so I cannot comment on leather upholstery problems. However the cloth upholstery interior wears extremely well, given we live on a small farm in North West Ireland, dirt, mud, wet weather etc.
I had our, GS converted to LPG (gas) and this cuts fuel costs by 40 to 50 per cent. MPG is not the issue in itself, but pence per mile. On LPG the cost is 13p (Stg) per mile, as is the diesel, BUT with the added power of the V8. This performs outstandingly well on long motorway hill "drags" in, eg mountainous areas of Spain, where you can be going uphill for 10 or 12 miles.
I totally agree that this is first and foremost an off road/ poor back roads' vehicle. If you live inside the M25, don't go off road, tow heavy trailers and use only normal A, B roads and motorways, why buy this vehicle? If you like the high position there are plenty of adequate SUVs.
28th May 2003, 16:00
I am the happy owner of a 1999 Disco Series II, and prior to that a 1983 Series III 110 (Military). Having rebuilt the Series III from the ground up, I can say this about Land Rover: electrical system aside, these are extremely well built and durable vehicles. And since the Defender, the electrical does not pose a problem anymore either.
My experiences with the Disco have not lessened this view. At nearly 60,000 km I have had the steering box and head gaskets replaced (under warranty). I don't find this particularly unusual.
The paint, fabric and leather have all held up quite well, considering the fact that this vehicle is taken off-road monthly, and is used to haul around all manner of large stuff. Honestly, though, who buys a 4x4 and then moans about chipped paint and worn upholstery?
The mileage is quite bad, but we're talking about a V8 engine in a vehicle with a curb weight of nearly 5,000 lbs! Land Rover has always performed best where it belongs: OFF THE TARMAC.
My only design criticism is the front bumper/fog lights. It's mounted too low, and I cracked the entire assembly coming off an extremely steep decline.
26th Jul 2003, 05:16
The comments from the former Land Rover employee made in September 2002 are valid, and there is probably little reason for owning a Landie in the UK unless you work in quarrying, civil engineering or agriculture, or tow a large trailer.
However, the purpose for which an owner uses their Land Rover is no excuse for Land Rover's well recognised quality problems and irritating defects that spoil an otherwise superb vehicle.
I am a regular visitor to southern Africa where a Landie should come into its own. Sadly, its build quality lets it down, and many of my Land Rover owning friends have experienced suspension, gear box and drive shaft failures in the most inconvenient places like the Kalahari. They have renamed the Defender the "Defector".
I drive a Discovery in UK and Europe, and go off road regularly, although not in conditions where the vehicle is challenged to its limit. I use my Discovery for its intended purpose, and really enjoying driving it on road and off. However, I am extremely disappointed with its mechanical and electric faults, blistered paintwork and galvanic corrosion of aluminium panels despite being dealer serviced since new. My dealer has been very sympathetic, but Land Rover customer "service" has been a waste of oxygen.
28th Jul 2003, 16:49
The points about driver style are totally correct - I get much stick from friends about my grandmother driving!
Off road the disco is fantastic and far more relaxing than friends Toyotas.
Build quality is pathetic - two engine rebuilds; one gearbox repair and I'm about to have a summer of leak stopping and rust treating!
I just hope the rangerover classic I just got to keep the disco company is a little less of a Friday afternoon model!
16th Apr 2007, 07:15
I've owned a Disco II, V8 for about 9 months and I love it. In my experience, the build quality is acceptable - there are some squeaks and knocks every now & then.
Handling isn't great, but my last car was a WRX Impreza. All you have to do is adjust your driving style. Stick to the speed limits and acknowledge that it won't handle like a rollercoaster.
Economy sucks, there are no two ways about it - about 18mpg on a long run and around 10-12mpg if you give it some. I'd never consider an LPG conversion though - too expensive and inconvenient - a big tank in the boot? No thanks.
For space, it's ideal - the boot is massive (plenty big enough for all my kite stuff (Numerous kites, Boards & Stuff). Offroading is really good. I do agree that the nose could perhaps be a bit higher and the overhang at the rear can be a bit of a problem at the bottom of the hill.
Overall, a real favourite of mine, but ultimately, the economy is it's biggest flaw. I do 50 miles a day & I'm going to have to swap it for a more economical car.
Mind you, in 5 years, I'll definitely be looking at a Disco 3 TDV6.