With apologies to the original poster, from another forum, I post the below, um, post.
I met two Highways Agency Traffic Wombles taking a break in the sunshine in Saltash today. I thought I'd say hello and ask how their Disco 4's stand up to daily use use for them. They were really friendly and happy to talk. What they told me, surprised me.
It turns out that they are supplied with either Disco's or Shoguns, both on a 3 year lease and dealer maintained. The Discos are basic cars, while the Shoguns come with leather and heated seats etc etc. They have to source from two different companies, in case all cars have to be withdrawn from service at the same time for a safety recall and (apparently) they can't "show favour" (?)
Each car works either 2 or 3 shifts a day and the mileage after 3 years? 250-330,000 miles
So which is best as far as they are concerned? He said that amongst the users, it's split around 5%:95% in favour of the Disco! Why?:
1. The Disco is much more reliable in service than the Shogun!! Apparently, the Disco's go from service to service with very few issues, only brake discs and pads being considered consumables. He's not aware of a single gearbox, engine or suspension failure. The Shoguns, on the other hand, are regularly in for failures. He said that the electrical system caught fire in a 2 week old one recently though, to be fair, he said that they add a lot of electrical equipment - but no problems with the Disco's wiring.
2. The spare parts are often at the LR dealer, or available on a next day basis. He said that the Mitsubishi's are often off the road waiting for parts from Japan.
3. The Disco tow's better. He said that they often have to tow cars out of mangled crash barriers, but they had also used them to move 44 tonne trucks! Apparently, as long as the brakes aren't stuck on (!), then LR are okay about this
4. They don't like driving the Shoguns, or even being in them. There's less space and despite the posh leather trim and the gadgets, they say they "are like driving tractors" after the Discos (apparently, it's the 3.2 litre engine that they use in the Shogun).
He said that the only reason they go back after 3 years is that that's the length of the lease as they were "just getting nice" at that mileage! They had been working hard with LR to lease a new fleet of 40, but LR are "working flat out for export" and couldn't give a decent delivery time. However, they've still placed the order with LR and are prepared to wait.