Lees Land Rover Discovery II being loaded up In the garage

Farewell Land Rover!

You may have seen a few of my previous blog posts about my Land Rover Discovery.

I originally bought this vehicle as my daily/tow vehicle. In order for a vehicle to be a good daily/towing vehicle in my eyes it needs to be reliable, and it turns out that this particular one wasn’t, with the transmission needing replacing after just a month of ownership, strangely the only trips the vehicle ever managed to make without issue was when it was towing my car to the track! Every other long journey bar a couple it has let me down in some way, leaving me, Lucy and our poor dog stranded at the side of the UK’s motorways.

Another quality I was looking for at least as far as being a tow car was it being strong, it certainly was that with a towing capacity of 3500kg it had no trouble at all towing a car and trailer.

One thing I didn’t want from a daily was something that was going to take my already limited time away from the drift car, and as mentioned this definitely demanded far more attention than it should have, resulting in me and in some cases my friends working into the night just to get this thing back on the road!

The final strike for the Discovery came recently while visiting family, we were 5 hours into a 6 hour drive to the south coast for the weekend when suddenly it started overheating and losing power. Thankfully I was coming up to a petrol station so I pulled in to investigate the problem. It didn’t take long before I realised that all of the coolant in the engine had decided it was going to exit, not out of a radiator hose or anything simple like that, but out of a hole where the head gasket should have been!

This was the last straw for me, if you have to call recovery for a vehicle four times in twelve months I do not class it as reliable. I had always liked them but after this I won’t be using one again or at least not an old one.

So as you can probably imagine at this point, it’s time to say goodbye to the Disco, and start the search for something to replace it.

Lees Land Rover Discovery II being loaded up In the garage

Why I bought a Discovery

In September 2017, I bought my first proper daily driver after several years of being part of the “daily driven drift car” crew. The daily in question was an E36 BMW 316i Compact, and for all intents and purposes was a great little car. I bought it cheap, and as a result it had a few issues. Overheating, being the main one, but I sorted it and carried on, then the day came for its first MOT while in my ownership. It failed on a couple of things but the main reason was the dreaded tin worm.

After investigating the rust I realised the car was too far gone to save, and so it was time to find myself a new daily, but the question was what should I get? I wanted something that was comfortable on long journeys, big enough to be able to get tools and spare wheels, and strong enough to be able to tow my car to and from the race track (once I had passed my towing license.)

I had set a realistic budget for myself, so now all I had to do was find the perfect daily…. Simple, right? At first I toyed with the idea of a transit van or some form of pickup, however after doing some research I had to rule both of these out, as most insurance companies class these as commercial vehicles and so would likely cost more to insure. Most large estate cars were out of the question as while they are comfortable and do have the large boot space, their towing capacity was barely enough to pull a large trailer, let alone a large trailer loaded with a drift car.

The variety was starting to narrow, I had considered something like a Japanese 4×4, however even these seemed to be fetching more than I could afford. Then, I had a thought, there was one vehicle I’d never event thought about but I’d always had a bit of a soft spot for, a Land Rover. I started to look and sure enough there were plenty out there that were well within my budget, however most of these had been heavily modified for off roading and after speaking to a friend of mine who had done a lot of off roading with his own Land Rover, he assured me that if its been modified for off roading, its going to be uncomfortable for long journeys, so I narrowed my search to ones that looked as close to stock as possible.

It didn’t take long before I found a relatively stock early 2000 Discovery 2 TD5 automatic in black for sale within a reasonable distance from where I live, and after viewing it, I decided it was the one for me!

Photo 28-07-2018, 11 02 37

I couldn’t be happier, it ticks every box of my wish list. It comfortably seats 5 people, it has a huge boot, and most of all it has a towing capacity of 3.5 tonnes, so when I finally get my trailer license I will be able to tow my car to and from the track with ease.