If you’ve longed for the indestructibility of Land Rover’s finest but with a tad more usability, we have the perfect machine for you…
Don’t call it a Defender! Proudly donning the coveted AutoClassics anorak, may I inform you that the official term for this 1989 Solihull great is Land Rover 110. The Defender name didn’t arrive on the scene until 1990. Besides, I’m lying. This isn’t really a Land Rover.
Lift the bonnet on this example currently for sale in the AutoClassics classifieds, and you’ll find a 3.9-litre Isuzu engine churning away, offering an estimated 150bhp. Power output hasn’t yet been confirmed, as there’s an upgraded turbo bolted to the engine. We can hear the Land Rover purists sharpening their pitchforks, but stick with us on this one.
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Let’s face it, while a Landy is as surefooted as a mountain goat, if you abuse its engine long enough it will punish you – often by leaving you stranded in the wilderness to be eaten by lions. However, Japanese units take such abuse with aplomb. What’s not to like? Looks like a Landy, performs like a Landy when it matters, yet averages more to the gallon and starts first time, every time?
Whatever the torque curve, this particular machine apparently out-accelerates any other ‘Defender’. Land Rover’s 70th Anniversary model may have something to say about that…
What the 70th Anniversary Defender doesn’t have, however, is a galvanised chassis. The trademark non-treated chassis is the Achilles’ heel for any Land Rover, but this Isuzu/Landy hybrid boasts the documents to certify that a fresh and rust-proofed frame holds everything together rather nicely.
As if that’s not enough, the long-wheelbase model sports a new soft-top canvas roof – a component any respecting Land Rover owner knows is painfully expensive to replace.
Aesthetically, nothing comes close. This beast would laugh in the face of a zombie apocalypse, transporting ten of your nearest and dearest through all manner of nasties without breaking a sweat.
Back in the real world, if you are contemplating a safari expedition you needn’t look any further. With this off-roader’s protective bull-bar up front and aggressive rear-placed chassis mounts, even the hardiest of rhinos would leg it for cover.
Wearing cream livery, contrasting camouflage roof and matching seat covers, this Land Rover won’t be to everyone’s taste, of course. Those seeking the purest of green oval vehicles will need to hunt elsewhere. Yet, if a useable, stylish and iconic 4x4 with added Japanese reliability takes your fancy, you’ll struggle to find anything more perfect than our classified offering. Get a closer look here.