Preloved | uk land rover freelander – cars reviews

21 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Preloved | uk land rover freelander – cars reviews

Overall Ratings

I own two – one is about to go. Head gasket blew earlier this year after 30 months owenership, had it replaced with the multi layered steel variety by a mechanic friend, so not too expensive, but the head needs replacing, and it won’t pass its next MOT, so its going. This is a 1.8 Xi.

The second one, to replace the first is a 1.8 XEi. I’ll own up now that I knew all along about the head gasket issue, so it came as no surprise. The XEi has had this job done by the previous owner, in fact the following have all been replaced/repaired by the previous owner in the last 18 months (10,000 miles):

Catalytic converter – replaced

Timing belt – replaced

Clutch – replaced

Passenger electric window regulator – replaced

Rear door and window – replaced

Additionally the following also appear to have been replaced (though there is no documentary evidence):


Fuel injection system

Remote thermostat housing

So, yes, I bought the second Freelander knowing all the issues associated with these cars, and basically found one where most of these issues have been addressed. In fact the previous owner spent over £3K carrying out these repairs. As its quite an old Freelander, needless to say, that’s more than I paid for it, so if it lasts two years I’ll have had my money’s worth.

Issues not rectified by the previous owner:

Poor radio reception – on inspection this was found to be a broken centre pin on the aerial coax plug, and was easily rectified. Oddly this appears to have been a problem from new as the radio is pristine with none of the usual buttons loose or missing.

Clock/radio display – usual digit segments missing problem, will try to rectify or replace – probably with a cheap Rover variety from ebay as new LR ones cost over 80 quid!

Dodgy fuel sender – fuel gauge all over the place, except when stationary for about 5 minutes with the ignition on – will replace sender.

Anyway, here’s what I have to say to all those slagging off the K-series engine, its a fine engine, and has been used in a variety of cars over the years, including the Lotus Elise, which strangely enough also suffered from head gasket failure (see link below). Why? Primarily the location of the thermostat and the use of nylon locating dowels for the head.

The first caused thermal shock to the engine, the second caused head shimmying, both resulting in head gasket failure. Land Rover’s remedy – multi layered steel head gasket, steel dowels to reduce shimmy, and remote thermostat housing placing the thermostat in such a position that thermal shock was no longer an issue. Lotus Elise owners also use these Land Rover mods on their cars, strangely Elise owners don’t seem to whinge quite as much about the problem!

The design of the engine has been widely copied, and varieties can now be found in many cars. Honda in particular have developed their own K series.

You can soon see if there is a remote thermostat housing installed by looking at the radiator hoses behind the radiator. There should be a bulbous white nylon thermostat housing with the hoses connected to it, if there isn’t, this modification has not been carried out. AVOID!

If you do intend to buy an earlier K-series engined Freelander, check to see if much of the above has been carried out, in particular the IRD, head gasket and thermostat housing. If they haven’t, and you still decide to buy, then BEWARE you WILL probably encounter problems. That aside, many cars have their problems, such things are not confined to just one make and model.

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