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  #1  
Old April 26th, 2004, 07:10 PM
Johnnyb
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John Bombara
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Question Which D90 to buy

Really psyched I found the site, beats tracking down D90's on the road. Here it is:
I have wanted one for 7 years. If I could have one vehicle in the world It would be a D90. I have been saving for one for the past 3 years and still need a lot more money. I think I might be able to afford a good deal, but am very scared of maintaining it. I dont want to get in over my head as far as $$ goes. How hard are these trucks to work on? Would someone who knows there way around an old Wrangler and CJ be qualified to do most maintenence on a D90? I dont want to buy it and get charged $100 per at L.Rover and have to sell it in a month.
Also what year do you recommend for a person looking for the most reliable trouble free truck possible (I emphasize possible). As I will be using this as my only vehicle.
Thanks for your help, I really want this truck, but I want to know if it's worth it to continue, as it is a lot of $$ to spend on a used truck. Thanks a lot guys, I appreciate any help.
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  #2  
Old April 26th, 2004, 07:44 PM
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Mike Hansen
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Re: Which D90 to buy

Quote:
Originally posted by Johnnyb
I don't want to buy it and get charged $100 per at L.Rover

Also what year do you recommend for a person looking for the most reliable trouble free truck possible
Point # 1 Dealer (Denver South) charges $100 just to scan the OBD 2 diagnostics .... so thats like $100 plus parts and labor!!! Dealers are not cheep. Thats the bad news. Good news is Defenders are as simple as old jeeps (except the damn computers). They are easy to wrench on / modify

Point # 2 Toyota
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  #3  
Old April 26th, 2004, 08:19 PM
Eric Siepmann
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1997 Defender 90 SW
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Reliability is fairly good. I have had great luck with my truck (see the for sale section. Couldn't resist the shameless plug). I f you maintain it well and follow the service guidlines you should be ok. If the previous owner took good care of it, you should generally do all right as well. The lower the miles the better as well.

EwS
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  #4  
Old April 26th, 2004, 09:31 PM
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you gonna have it as your everyday car?
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  #5  
Old April 26th, 2004, 09:57 PM
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John,
You've found THE D-90 site. Welcome. Lots of very knowledgeable people here and I'm sure they'll offer good mechanical advice.

Did you also find LRX.COM too? Super resource for vehicles, if you don't buy Eric's that is. There are lots of trucks in NE area. Rust, though is a big concern and some people have gone so far as to travel all the way to the southwest or west coast to buy their trucks. If you look it over well, though, you can still do ok buying a northeastern truck.

Also, I'd suggest searching through these old forums because this topic is often discussed.

Welcome and we look forward to hearing your stories.
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  #6  
Old April 26th, 2004, 11:19 PM
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Mike Doligalski
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I have had my 90 since last August and it has been my only vehicle. Of course, I have been in school and have not driven it too often (mostly on the weekends and incedentals during the week). My rover just rolled past 90k miles and it has never had any real troubles. Just be prepared to have a vehicle with a little "character." I find it pretty easy to work on. I would also be learly of taking it to the dealer for service. The dealer can be a good resource, but they are normally overpriced and the one closest to me likes to find service that doesn't necessarily need to be done. My advice would be to look for a good defender (not always the first one to pop up), look for an independent rover shop like www.roverclubhouse.com, and maybe buy yourself a workshop manual. Above all else, set the d-90 source as your homepage because it is the best resource for defender owners anywhere. Good luck with your rover hunt.

-Mike
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  #7  
Old April 26th, 2004, 11:37 PM
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I second the rust. I would look hard to find one with as little rust as possible. Also maintinace records are a plus, those were my two biggest criteria when I was looking for a D-90.
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  #8  
Old April 27th, 2004, 12:21 AM
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Glenn Guinto
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John,

Most of us here have been through what you're going through right now. That's why if you read through the different posts and archives, you will find a wealth of information. You can see what sorts of things plague these D90s and hopefully will give you a general idea of what you're in for....

I understand your concerns but remember these are enthusiasts vehicles (people that own them are crazy about them), that means you will have a great support group. I could already think of at least 3 D90 owners in your area and some are posting here too. It's like an AA meeting...LOL Of course, there's always this website. If you can work with Jeeps, you will not have much problems working with the D90. In some ways it IS as simple (if not simpler in some ways) than the CJs.

What you also need to know are places where you can take your truck that #1. know these trucks well and #2. don't have dealer prices. I don't know much in your area but if you cross the bridge and head to Jersey, there's Import Specialists in Paramus (about 15-20 min from GWB).

Good luck... Summer is fast approaching, get a Soft Top, preferably with the fiber glass hardtop already included.

Here is a great link about the different years of the Defender 90...

http://www.eastcoastrover.com/INFOD90.html
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  #9  
Old April 27th, 2004, 12:56 AM
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Robert Ragland
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John,

Buy a Defender when the time is right, don't force it. Whether that time is this year, next, or five years from now, you will find some Defender to buy. I test drove one in Spring '94, less than a year after buying a Wrangler. It was simply too expensive then. A few cars, grad school, and the like later, I bought mine in summer '99.

These trucks are now upwards of 10 years old, and can require significant work. Most here have had a fairly good experience with reliability. Given the age, though, things do go out, and Land Rover parts aren't exactly cheap. Also, reliability will worsen if you can't afford routine maintenance or work. Say for instance the radiator needs replacement, and the truck runs hot. You can't afford it, so you put it off. Then the engine blows a gasket, or worse. If you're stretched too thin, you'll end up paying notes on something that doesn't even run. The worst situation to face is being forced to sell a non-running vehicle because you can't pay to fix it - you take a real loss. I saw this happen while in college with people buying old Porsche's and the like.

By and large, everyone here loves Land Rovers, almost to a fault. So I don't think you'll find anyone who wouldn't say a Defender is a great vehicle. But no matter how wonderful, it isn't worth losing sleep over making payments, or having a panic attack every time the truck makes a weird noise. Be honest with your budget. When you know you're ready, ownership will be a lot more enjoyable. Learn all you can, take your time, and have fun.
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  #10  
Old April 27th, 2004, 04:22 PM
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Todd Klueger
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Another great one! www.tntlr.com
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  #11  
Old April 27th, 2004, 06:50 PM
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Just make sure you look at the differences between the different years and determine what you like. I like the 97 because it has an auto tranny and nicer interior. Plus there's a great color they made 300 of called Willow Green.

As far as reliability - Landies are reliable- they don't usually "break down", they just need maintenance. I do a lot of it myself. And contrary to common belief, the parts are actually pretty cheap.
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  #12  
Old April 27th, 2004, 07:17 PM
Eric Siepmann
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And contrary to common belief, the parts are actually pretty cheap.

You got some secret JuJu you're not sharing with the group WIcks?
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  #13  
Old April 28th, 2004, 04:10 AM
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Dude, I used to be a BMW and Benz person, and general parts for that kind of car are 2x rover parts. Not special stuff, just regular replacement parts. Jap parts might make rover parts looks spensive, but I never did that thing.

Oh, and I also used to daily drive a Citroen.
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  #14  
Old April 28th, 2004, 11:07 AM
Eric Siepmann
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Fine Euro cars, well except for the citroen. That puts things into perspective.


EwS
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  #15  
Old April 28th, 2004, 09:32 PM
Johnnyb
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Thanks a lot for the replies, I see a defender maybe once a month in my area, and it's usually impossible to start asking questions while they are passing the other way. I am real glad to talk to actual owners. My budget will allow me about 25K to spend, I know I will need to find a deal, but I have seen quality trucks for this price in the past. (I might be able to stretch a little more within a few months) I would most likely be looking at a 95 (in my range). Is there a mjor difference between 97 and 95?? (besides auto-manual). I am wondering if one is more reliable than the other (different engine? computer??)
If anyone is in the area I live (mid suffolk county) I would be glad to speak with you, though I have probably seen your truck before. I get up extra early to catch a glimpse of a green one drive by once in a while, I'm obsessed! Keep the help coming guys, I appreciate it more than you know. And yes this would be my only vehicle.
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  #16  
Old April 28th, 2004, 11:35 PM
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If look around and are patient and check all the BBS, and for sale sites you will find a really nice D-90 for that price. I bought my 97 D-90 w/40K miles on it for $23,500 in December. Granted a ST D-90 is certainly less attractive in December than May, but my advice is to just be patient and wait until the right one comes along. If you want a 97 don't settle for a 94 or a 95 and vice versa.

Good Luck

BTW - I frequented this site and other LR related sites for almost an entire year before I finally found the right one.
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  #17  
Old April 28th, 2004, 11:57 PM
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John, Listen to Joe, wait for a good deal on what you are looking for, don't stretch yourself thin, leave some extra $$ just in case and for all the upgrades and mods you are going to want to do.
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  #18  
Old April 29th, 2004, 10:17 PM
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John Bombara
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Joe, I saw a black D90 on ebay, that looks exactly like yours, its not from Oregon is it? I regret buying it, it was a 97 for about 25K, anyway, I will take that advice and take my time looking. If you guys have any other sites to look at trucks for sale, please let me know. Thanks.
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  #19  
Old April 29th, 2004, 10:46 PM
ONDROX
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I

It took me about a year and a half before I found the right rover for me( $$$ and the right color). Don't jump on the first rover in your price range. I actually found mine on autotrader.com, but I spent a lot of time looking in here and on lrx. Previous posts were right--the guys in here will give you a lot of support and questions are answered quickly. Its almost like a cult following w/ these trucks--once you get one, you will understand.
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  #20  
Old April 29th, 2004, 11:47 PM
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Actually, the truck I bought was from Oregon.
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