X-Treme Dilemma

Submitted: Sunday, Apr 16, 2006 at 18:34
ThreadID: 32934 Views:1800 Replies:2 FollowUps:0
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G'day guys. This is a little bit similar to an earlier post, so please bear with me, but I'm on the verge of forking out the cash for a TD5 X-Treme and am looking for some final reassurrance or otherwise.
Basically, I've been looking around for a second-hand Defender. The toss-up is between one with a computer-controlled engine (i.e. 1999 onwards) of which there are a few around or say a 1997/98 without engine management unit, of which there are not many for sale in Queensland. I'll be doing a fair bit of beach driving (fishing) and am considering trips to Alice Springs and surrounds and at least one Top End expedition in the future. As far as I can tell, those with an ECU are pretty reliable but I understand that you can really find yourself in the sh*t if it packs it in. I'd be interested in the experiences of anyone with similar vehicles (good and bad) who use them for similar purposes and any solutions to fixable problems
I've already received some great tips with regards to minimising water and dust ingress - thanks very much for that.
I'd be interested in any recall problems as well. I've read about potential problems with wiring looms, oil pump sprocket bolts, front brake hose chafing and oil leaks in engine harness - all of which are easily fixable if they haven't already been fixed in a well used and cared for vehicle.

Don't get me wrong - I am pretty much sold on all other aspects of the Defender and by all reports they are a great off-road vehicle (and have plenty of character), but with a young family I need to be pretty sure I'm making the right decision. I'd reckon there'd be plenty of people around in the places I'd go who'd lend a hand if necessary but it would be nice to know I could fix any problems or not get into them in the first place.

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Reply By: the real chopper - Sunday, Apr 16, 2006 at 19:31

Sunday, Apr 16, 2006 at 19:31
A local hire company here in Hervey Bay runs mostly defenders 110 TDi's 130s and a few extremes with the TD5.

He says that the td5s are a pain just due to the location of servicible items within the engine bay.

Never heard him say that the elctronics have caused problems (you can disable the ABS and therefore ETC with a fuse) his criticisms have all been based around the time taken in his workshop to do standard serving and mainteance.

(all of these vehicles spend musch of their lives being driven by backpackers and other tourists all over Fraser Island)
AnswerID: 167255

Reply By: Alan H - Tuesday, Apr 18, 2006 at 11:32

Tuesday, Apr 18, 2006 at 11:32
Hi Gascoigne.
I run a Td5 Defender and have never had the slightest problem in the 3 years I've had it........ except for a Smart Solenoid which wasn't so smart and let the battery get drained of all power. That was fixed by the installler and a new battery installed to replace the 2 year old one which promptly collapsed inside as soon as it received it's first charge!
In this time I've done the GRR and Karunjie tracks, and a fair bit in the Pilbara. Plenty more trips coming up.
The only thing under the bonnet which is a pain is the oil filter which the engine assemblers tighten up as hard as they can because there's no obstructions to them doing so when it's on the bench without other stuff around it.
Maybe they think it's funny to give it an extra wrench up or maybe they just don't think about it whcih is more likely.
This is only a prob. on new vehicles which have never been serviced as you wouldn't do it up so tight normally.
I believe the oil in the wiring loom and oil pump bolts were fixed a long time ago, certainly there's no evidence at all on mine of anything not right.
Even the cook enjoys it so it can't be bad and I can squeeze in even the huge amount of stuff she wants to carry on a trip.
Happy motoring.
AnswerID: 167539

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