Review by it
Monday, May 16, 2016
- Travels smoothly on the road
- Good off-road capabilities
- It is sophisticated
- Good family car
- The boot space limited
- Expensive running costs
- Questionable long-term reliability
This second generation Freelander is a marked improvement on the original with Land Rover putting all of their extensive off road knowledge into use. The new Freelander has also improved its on road handling and interior quality. The Freelander is now just at home ferrying the kids around as it is at negotiating demanding terrains ranging from streams, to mud, sand to snow and yet it still feels like a car when on normal roads. It also comes with the option of either petrol or diesel engines and Land Rover have now incorporated stop start technology in order to help save fuel in newer models.
Exterior and Interior
This second generation Freelander has been restyled with a new grille and headlamps as well as a new layout inside, which is a dramatic improvement from the previous one. The interior feels solid and durable and the dash is logically laid out and easy to use. The driving position is also improved with increased head, shoulder and leg room. The Freelander also provides a good view off the road ahead thanks to the seats being raised slightly and which now come with an adjustable driving position. The back seats don't have as much room with taller passengers left wanting for more legroom. The boot is fairly small and narrow, but there is still the option of folding rear seats which increase the space and enabling larger items to fit in such as bicycles. The boot floor matting is also double sided offering a carpeted side and a waterproof side for when transporting muddy items or dogs. There is lots of small storage areas through out with multiple cup holders, a decent sized cubby hole and door pockets as well as netting on the roof for other small items such as map books. The base model comes with a lot of equipment as standard which includes a keyless start button, a stereo system that automatically controls the volume depending on the road noise and comes with an iPod or MP3 player socket. There is also tons of optional equipment that include parking aids, electric sunroof, bi-xenon lights, and rear headphone sockets. Higher trim levels come with sat-nav, an integrated telephone, 12 speaker stereo system, CD multichanger, automatic headlights and 18 inch alloys as standard.
Performance and Economy
The diesel 2.2-litre TD4 is by far the most popular engine as it is extremely smooth and powerful with good low down revs, and isn't particularly slow being only two seconds slower than the petrol engine and going from 0-60mph in 10.9 seconds. The 3.2-litre V6 engine is a lot quicker going from 0-60mph in 8.9 seconds and is just as smooth and eager, however, it is no where near as fuel efficient managing only 25mpg as opposed to the diesels 37mpg and really needs to be revved to get the most from it. Both of the 6 speed gearboxes are smooth and work well with the automatic performing admirably even off road. As of 2009 the manual gearbox comes with start stop technology that turns off the car every time the hand brake is applied and the car is put into neutral. It starts back up again as soon as the clutch is pushed and is ready to go again. In 2010 Land Rover released a two wheel drive Freelander that also comes with the stop start technology in order to comply with the Euro-5 regulations. The diesel is also cheaper to insure falling into category 12 whereas the petrol falls into category 14.
Like to Drive
The Freelander 4 offers a very good ride quality with an excellent driving position as well as it being extremely comfortable. The high seating position also gives a commanding view of the road ahead as well as there being good all round views out of all the windows. The handling is much improved from the first generation Freelander with it offering good cornering abilities with minimum body roll. With the steering feeling sharp and well weighted the Freelander feels more like a large family car than a 4x4. It is just as capable off road with a simple to use off road system which can be altered depending on what surface you are travelling on. The system alters the setup of the car in order to best deal with the terrain. The suspension is also very good soaking up all the bumps making long distance driving a dream.
Faults and Repairs
This generation is more reliable than the first generation, however, there are still faults with the electrics such as the headlights on the dash lighting up unnecessarily as well as there being problems with the clutch and gearboxes. As with most Land Rovers repairs and services are expensive with the front and rear bumpers costing over £1000 each if they get cracked in an accident.