9th Jan 2011, 17:27
I have a 2001 Jim with 175.000 miles on the clock! It is lifted 3" by springs along with everything else that goes along with a lift. It has aggressive mud tyres on. (80% Off Road bias)
Of course I know what my vehicle has fitted and how it 'feels' on tarmac, wet or dry.
With the tyres I have, even dry tarmac feels slippy!
So, I drive by the "seat of my pants" as they say. I love rear wheel drive vehicles much, much more than front wheel drive vehicles.
My other vehicle is a 200bhp fwd Mercedes turbo. Lovely and quick, and with loads of torque. ABS and stability gizmo's, pretty flashing lights on the dash to say "Wheelspin!"
Do you know what? I really wish it was rear wheel drive! It is so unrewarding to drive.
Driven with respect and 'on the look-out' for dangers etc, the Jim is great, brilliant off-road and perfectly fine on tarmac, I find.
I would not let anyone drive mine, especially the 'drivers' that get in and just drive to get from A to B. The ones that don't take an interest in their driving.
A bog standard Jim, I have no fears at all with the road bias tyres, suspension etc, I drive one regularly in Cyprus, and it will 4 wheel drift along with any hot hatch, though obviously not as fast.
You must just have been unlucky that day on the traffic island.
If I feel going round an island, junction or whatever at the same speed as the traffic, is unsafe, then I'll go slower. If I hold traffic up whilst I'm 'maneuvering', then so be it.
Just common sense really.
Would I have another one? Yes, in a shot!
10th Jan 2011, 04:23
Great comment, cheers.
They are superb off road, but need some expertise on road - love the drifting idea... !
Even with experience, I got caught out by a set of circumstances which were common enough and at a sensible speed. It was a lovely car though, well built, charming and I miss it, but I would not want it back as a road car.
25th Mar 2011, 18:09
It was interesting returning to this discussion and seeing so many comments on this handling issue.
I hadn't given it much thought in my earlier response, where I described the handling as "evil", until in another unrelated write up on this, a long time owner commented that the vehicle handled much worse with only half a tank of fuel.
This was interesting, as the loan Jimny I drove had stuff all fuel in it (less than a quarter of a tank) when I drove it.
Maybe this has a significant effect on weight distribution in such a short wheel base vehicle.
Maybe the fuel moving around in the tank has an effect as well?
To me, it seemed the front end wanted to tuck under on roundabouts, and lift weight off of the opposite rear wheel.
I've driven quite a few 4x4's on and off road, and it felt very unstable to me - especially as it was a late model vehicle, and you would expect better.