Never mind what you might think about the original Land Rover Freelander: the Mk2 was bigger and claimed to be better, with more powerful engines, rearranged trim levels and a complex Terrain Response 4x4 system. It was also meant to break down much less often, and indeed it certainly seems to have been built to a higher quality.
Actually, the Freelander 2 can do a decent bit of work in a far more cost-effective manner than its bigger Range Rover-badged brothers. It’s quite a charming little breeze block.
The 2.2-litre Td4 diesel is the popular choice over the short-lived 3.2-litre petrol, but in the long term that’s the fuel-hungry winner if you do few miles and want access to London’s ULEZ. Incidentally, the Td4 eStop/Start model from 2009 saved some fuel and got you to 37mpg.
Facelift time came in 2010, and that meant a new front end, plus the power units being uprated. Essentially, there was a choice of two diesels in the late-model life cycle: the automatically shifting SD4 and the default-buy Td4.
Interestingly, you can do without the full-fat four-wheel-drive layout with the front-led eD4, which lasted until 2012.
It’s possible to get lost in the muddle of trims, but it started at S and went up to HSE, with GS having most of what you need, including parking sensors and climate control. Later specs included Dynamic and kitchen-sink Metropolis.
The Freelander can suffer electrical issues, so check the climate control, seats, remote locking, windows and everything else that you can prod.
Mechanically, there might be oil leaks, faulty dual-mass flywheels on truculent manual ’boxes and worn steering racks. Otherwise, it’s the usual suspension and brake damage of hard-used haulers.
Still, this is arguably the only recent Landie that’s a half-decent used buy.
2008 Land Rover Freelander 2.2 Td4 HSE 107,000 miles, £6895