steyr 243 said:There not a bad car really. I drive a defender td5 but use an early 2lt diesel freelander quite often. Its got 80k on the clock & drives fine. I agree the 1.8 petrol is a nightmare so steer clear. Done a few headgaskets on them in the past & that dont really cure the problem. The K series petrol engine fitted in a car aint too bad but for some reason it doesnt seem to work in the freelander Try & go for the td4 but be warned, the pre face lift model used a multi vane turbo & can suffer problems. The face lift model used a different turbo unit unlike the earlier td4 & this has cured the problem. Also the freelander can suffer IRD Unit failure. The first signs of wear to the IRD are abnormal wear on the rear tyres. (Blocking) where the tyres seem to wear in blocks around the tyre tread. This was more apparent in the earlier model freelander but some later models seem to suffer from it as well
All this sounds very alarming i know but just remember this. You only hear all the horror stories of things that go wrong & it taints the image of the whole car so everyone thinks every freelander is crap The thing to remember is the freelander was the biggest selling small 4x4 ever built by any motor manufacturer to date so the percentage of defect vehicles is relatively small compared to the amount built.
I work for a major japanese motor manufacturer & they build one of the most popular 4x4s on the market today. You would be alarmed to know some of the major warranty claims that are made on these for worst defects than you will find on a freelander. It just proves that the japanese aint always the best, You just dont hear all the horror stories as often.
Every vehicle has its faults & they always will do. My td5 Defender is 3 years old & has had its fair share of faults since ive owned it (now all sorted out). I have access to new japanese 4x4s if i want & can get them cheaper than a second hand defender, Id take the defender anyday over any other 4x4.