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Hello, I'm looking for a new landie. I've owned a 2004 Discovery II before and loved it but hopefully I can get a newer one that will cause me slightly less trouble.

I'm thinking either an LR3 or a standard Range Rover.
I'd like to keep it under $13,000 (US dollars) if possible. Less than that would be even better.

What's the best rover I can buy for that?

Thanks,
Josh
 

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The best Rover you can buy is the one with ALL maintenance records back to day one. Not Carfax, not just oil change receipts, full records. I can't stress that enough. That is the only way you're going to know if there is a pattern to the repairs, if it's going to be an electrical nightmare, if it keeps having the same problems that no one seems to be able to fix, etc. The LR3s are super nice; I owned an '05. No experience with the '03 and newer Range Rover. Definitely do your research, lots of it. Any vehicle you consider purchasing, have a pre purchase inspection done by someone who knows these vehicles. It'll be worth the $150 - $200 it'll cost you. The way I see it is you can either pay that $150 now or save it and find out after you buy the vehicle (and are stuck with it) that it needs $2,000 worth of work. Your money so your choice.


Colin
 

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You can get an 05 or 06 LR3 or RRS with less than 100K for that price. I completely agree with the maintenance records. It needs to have regular spec oil changes and all recommended services at the recommend intervals. Look for low-hanging fruit like compressor being replaced, etc. But I would be most interested in the tranny and diff service. If it has not been serviced, and you feel any hesitation, slippage, or rough gear changes, walk away. Should be smooth as silk.

I would not hesitate to by a 100K LR3 or RRS IF it has been maintained and is in good shape. I am of the opinion that "medium-mileage" foreign luxury vehicles are a good value, because they are usually high quality products and the owners often take good care of it (if they afford to buy it in the first place, hopefully they can afford to properly maintain it.). They also do not hold their value well, so are good targets for resale buyers. Expect +/- 250K miles out of either truck. The body and drivetrain will probably die before the engine does.
 

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My advice is to stay away from the 03-05 Range Rover. This is the one with the 4.4 M62 BMW engine. It has a TON of engine, oil and cooling system issues. Believe me on this. Also, check out the Range Rover and BMW forums. They still look very nice from the outside, and can be had quite cheap now, but you'll be putting a ton of money into it unless you are either very lucky, live in a non-cold climate (these engines hate the cold - research PCV issues), and / or mange to find one with an exceptional service history that has had all of the usual preventative maintenance done. I had one of these for about 4 years, in Madison, WI. I do most of my own wrenching, so researched and worked on mine a ton. Became very familiar with the entire vehicle. Mechanics, electronics, interior, etc, etc. The 06 had the different Jag engine, and also had a SC version, but still had the very poor quality interior - lots of peeling. If you do get a Range Rover, get one that's 07 onwards. Sweet spot would be an 08, because this is the 3rd year of the Jag engine, and the 2nd year of the updated interior, so most of the bugs had been figured out. But I honestly don't know if you can find a decent one for $13,000. Sorry, I doubt it. If you're able to do your own work, I think you can consider a Range Rover. If you don't do your own work, you will quite likely be looking at a bunch of headaches. Bottom line, my advice, if you can't find an exceptionally well looked after Range Rover, get an LR3. I have an 08 LR3, and it has honestly been the most reliable vehicle I have ever owned. Even taking into account that I am extremely hard on it, off-road. It probably has something to do with the fact that I found a 1 owner vehicle with a complete service history performed at the same Land Rover dealership since new. It's interesting, I keep an eye on prices of all types of Land Rover, and I believe prices have gone UP or stayed the same during the past 3 years or so - The low gas prices especially seem to have caused some of that during the past year or so, and also the high cost of the new Land Rovers and the improved reliability of models since about 2007 means that people are hanging onto their current vehicle, and so there are not as many used vehicles for sale. That's not particularly objective I guess, just my opinion. I think you will be able to find a very nice 05 or 06 LR3 within your budget. If you're planning on going off-road, get a vehicle that is fitted with the HD option - you won't find this identified anywhere on teh vehicle, but basically it provides you with a locking rear diff, and also a full-sized tire. I can't believe they would sell any Land Rover without a full-sized tire, but that's another debate I guess.
 

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My advice is to stay away from the 03-05 Range Rover. This is the one with the 4.4 M62 BMW engine. It has a TON of engine, oil and cooling system issues. Believe me on this. Also, check out the Range Rover and BMW forums. They still look very nice from the outside, and can be had quite cheap now, but you'll be putting a ton of money into it unless you are either very lucky, live in a non-cold climate (these engines hate the cold - research PCV issues), and / or mange to find one with an exceptional service history that has had all of the usual preventative maintenance done. I had one of these for about 4 years, in Madison, WI. I do most of my own wrenching, so researched and worked on mine a ton. Became very familiar with the entire vehicle. Mechanics, electronics, interior, etc, etc. The 06 had the different Jag engine, and also had a SC version, but still had the very poor quality interior - lots of peeling. If you do get a Range Rover, get one that's 07 onwards. Sweet spot would be an 08, because this is the 3rd year of the Jag engine, and the 2nd year of the updated interior, so most of the bugs had been figured out. But I honestly don't know if you can find a decent one for $13,000. Sorry, I doubt it. If you're able to do your own work, I think you can consider a Range Rover. If you don't do your own work, you will quite likely be looking at a bunch of headaches. Bottom line, my advice, if you can't find an exceptionally well looked after Range Rover, get an LR3. I have an 08 LR3, and it has honestly been the most reliable vehicle I have ever owned. Even taking into account that I am extremely hard on it, off-road. It probably has something to do with the fact that I found a 1 owner vehicle with a complete service history performed at the same Land Rover dealership since new. It's interesting, I keep an eye on prices of all types of Land Rover, and I believe prices have gone UP or stayed the same during the past 3 years or so - The low gas prices especially seem to have caused some of that during the past year or so, and also the high cost of the new Land Rovers and the improved reliability of models since about 2007 means that people are hanging onto their current vehicle, and so there are not as many used vehicles for sale. That's not particularly objective I guess, just my opinion. I think you will be able to find a very nice 05 or 06 LR3 within your budget. If you're planning on going off-road, get a vehicle that is fitted with the HD option - you won't find this identified anywhere on teh vehicle, but basically it provides you with a locking rear diff, and also a full-sized tire. I can't believe they would sell any Land Rover without a full-sized tire, but that's another debate I guess.
^ what e said.

I've been consistently in the used RRS / LR3 / FFRR market (and even started in the DII market 10 years ago) for a long time and stay up with the trends pretty well - got my LR3 September before last. The exact color/options I had really wanted since they came out (some stuff is hard to find).

The price you're looking for is pretty easily attainable but you'll probably have to drive 50-75+ miles to get it. Are you picky about color, heated seats, xenons, 7 seats, park distance front/rear, etc?

You can pick up a base V6 with good mileage for right around 10k. Ironically it's only 1-2k extra to find a V8 with good options usually. All of those would be 2005-2006s, with 95-130k miles probably.

If you're looking to get an 08 (new colors and painted flares, that's about it) in the 70-90k mile mark, they're usually $15k cheapest for base SE/undesirable colors to low 20s still for white or black HSE's with every option (certain things were still options on HSEs like rear seat / DVD, HD package locking diff, and I believe some variant of cold climate with adaptive xenons but I might be wrong about that.) It's hard to find white ones, especially the Alaska white for the 08+s but it's a really beautiful color and as with all Land Rovers, white is probably going to be the hardest to find and the most desirable for resale (any dealer used or new will tell you this). I sold my rare Atacama Sand metallic RRS to get a white LR3 lol.

As was already said, I'd stay away from the full size RR unless you get an 06 with the Jag 4.4, and even then they didn't get terrain response till 2008! Those also had many rolling changes in those years that will make you wish you got that ONE year later and before you know it you're looking at $30k 2009s lol, push-start, new dash with new AC system/vents, terrain response, new chassis electronics, better sound deadening, etc etc were all rolling changes - unlike the LR3 which essentially stayed exactly the same through the years which makes them wonderfully rewarding cars to buy used. ;)
 
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