Why this barn find Land Rover is the perfect starter classic

This barn find 1965 Land Rover Series IIA should prove relatively simple to get back on the road – the perfect DIY project for those just starting out

You may look at this dishevelled barn-find 1965 Land Rover and deem the 4x4 worthy only of the scrapyard, but delve beyond the moss-draped body panels and you’ve got the ideal DIY restoration project.

More Land Rover greats!

Unlike more finicky heritage vehicles out there, old Land Rovers remain friendly to those starting out with their classic car hobby. One of the more forgiving choices for individuals still cutting their teeth and exercising new-found skills, taking a worn Land Rover engine apart or changing the chassis won’t result in a subscription for Valium. Nor will you need a degree in engineering to tune it up.

Regardless of where you are in the world, there will always be specialist garages to help you on your way, alongside steadfast owners' clubs certain to welcome you with open arms. It’s highly unlikely that you’ll struggle for parts, either – as these vehicles remain popular enough for various companies to offer brand new ‘old’ components.

With current values for these Land Rovers showing no signs of adjournment, and classic 4x4 ownership boasting one of the healthiest fan scenes out there, as a starter project for those nursing an interest, there is nothing to lose. Specialist insurance firms are ready to keep costs low, making this short-wheel base example the perfect tonic against a technologically-driven world.

The current vendor has owned this British 4x4 for the last 25 years, the Land Rover Series IIA having passed through the hands of some five previous titleholders. The 2.25-litre petrol engine runs after a bit of persuasion and the drivetrain provides motion without protest, with little over 89,000 miles upon the odometer.

Components within the engine bay appear to be mostly original, but the cabin is far from how it left the factory. The steering wheel has been slapped with after-market trim while both front seats have been lifted from either an Austin Maestro or Montego, though removing these add-ons won’t provide a headache.

What may provide testing to those with a fear of insects is the removal of various spiders, all of whom have made this Land Rover their home. This is a common Land Rover problem, and from past experience, if you name the eight-legged critters, they simply become part of the furniture.

As you would expect, the paintwork is worse for wear. Cracked in places and flaking off with the tenacity of automotive dandruff, if you're aiming for a concours-ready model then you’ll have your work cut out. However, Land Rovers aren’t meant to be clean and tidy. Rather, these indestructible off-roaders look their best when proudly displaying their battle scars.

Launched ten years after Rover’s genesis 4x4 model, the Land Rover Series II boasted various improvements over the 1948 original – yet lost none of the original charm. Unbeatable off road and offering more power for when the going got rough, as an exercise in flying the flag, Solihull’s humble workhorse proved to be insanely popular.

As such, barn find examples hold extra provenance, which is why this example is such a special opportunity. Get a closer look at this barn-find project 1965 Land Rover Series IIA here.

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