1995 Range Rover County LWB
First off, apologies for the lengthy post. There is a lot to say about this truck, and any RRC up for this price requires a good explanation.
There is a Defender Source history of this truck. It was for sale in October of 2014 by Green Mountain Rovers for $6.5k.
At that point, it ended up in the care of Taylor Congleton over at CRR. I purchased the truck from him in March, 2015 before it hit the forums here. I bought it for $18.5k with 153k miles. My purpose for buying the vehicle was to use it as a regular driver.
People on these forums know about Taylor, and know the quality of his work. While he had his hands on it, he did his usual treatment. I purchased it prior to an ad being posted but there have been several of his vehicles for sale on this forum since December of 2014 that represent the type of work that he does and his normal set of upgrades. I also have included links from the Congleton Service page and a couple dropbox pages that all have some great pictures of the truck before it came to me.
When Taylor had it, he swapped the dash and front seats, installed a NRP performance y-pipe and NRP catback exhaust, detailed the interior, HID headlights, re-sprayed vehicle in beluga black (described as a $3,500 respray for a driver), waxoyl undercoat, ECU performance upgrade, rear retainer strip, Roverville radio with aux input for iphone, among other standard maintenance items. I was very pleased with the work that Taylor did.
After about a month of driving it I came to the conclusion that, in its current state, it was not viable as a regular driver and it was going to be a project to get it to that point. It became very clear why it was an $18.5k truck, and not a $30k truck like I have seen his last couple sell for.
***I want to make it very clear that my transaction with Taylor was great. The information that he gave me about the truck was accurate and highly detailed and I believe that he 100% disclosed all of the issues that he was aware of. He was also extremely accommodating when I spoke to him about the issues that I discovered. I would not hesitate to purchase another vehicle from him in the future. He has a great reputation and it was very clear to me why. ***
1) The engine had some issues. While there was a performance tune added to the ECU, I believe that some of the standard 14CUX gremlins existed. There were no CELs when I received it, but after a short period the CEL came on and there were misfires on multiple cylinders, a noticeable lifter tick, and a lean condition on one bank (confirmed with a rovergauge). On top of that, if it was wet outside, the idle stepper would go nuts and the truck would stall out at idle speeds (I think this was related to #4 below).
2) The truck did not respond to throttle input at cruising speeds.
3) The rear windows needed work. One was missing the regulator rail on the bottom and was held up with a screw in the window track, the other was missing the poly wheel on the end of the regulator arm and was prone to dropping if the window button was actuated. The rear upper lift gate was also in pretty rough condition.
4) On a drive after a rainy day the passenger front footwell carpet was soaked. I poked around a bit and the result was uncovering of a 6” x 12” rusted hole in the footwell/firewall.
While working to resolve all of the issues I purchased another vehicle for everyday use. This truck is at the point now where I consider it, basically, done. I don’t need it for regular driving anymore and have a Defender project that I want to get going on, hence the sale.
I work for Roush Industries in Livonia, MI as an NVH engineering consultant. The group that I am in includes several guys that are Master Certified ASE Technicians and provides me access to great garage facilities. All of the work done on the vehicle was completed at Roush with the help of Roush mechanics.
Work completed since purchase:
Rear windows: Taylor gave me a replacement regulator, but the poly piece on that one broke as well pretty quickly. I modified the regulator and installed a new poly disk that is held on with a cotter pin. It works nicely. The other window was replaced with a roverlandparts.com used window. It now functions properly as well.
Rear Upper Lift Gate: I replaced the liftgate with an aluminum kit from Famous Four 4x4 out of the UK. I used new latches, and was able to reuse the center portion of the handle.
Passenger footwell: This issue had clearly been addressed in the past. If you look at the October 2014 sale there is a comment about floors being busted out. I believe they were partially repaired at that point. My repair involved patching the hole with sheet metal, rivets, structural adhesive (Dow Betamate 2098) and silicone. After patching the hole the carpet was still getting wet, I removed the front fender and wet cowl and found a hole under the hood hinge. I believe that this was the source of the problem and it has been patched.
14CUX EFI Issues: This is where I spent a majority of my time and money. Diagnosing and resolving a 14CUX problem can be a nightmare. It started with an intermittent tach signal so I replaced the alternator and the battery. The engine passed compression and leak down, the fuel system was supplying good pressure to the regulators and the ignition seemed to be functioning properly. I thought I had it licked when I discovered a busted vacuum advance, but after that was replaced I was still having issues. I fooled around with it for a little while with no luck and made the decision to replace the entire EFI system with a CANEMs system from Lloyd’s Specialist Development in the UK.
Lloyd Specialist Developments | Fully Programmable Engine Management Kit - Lucas 14CUX Rover V8
This kit included a distributor delete, brand new engine wiring harness, idle valve upgrade, 14CUX MAF sensor delete for MAP sensor, addition of Discovery 1 style ignition coils, and the addition of wide-band O2 sensors. It was expensive but it is a great kit that I consider a giant upgrade. I also took the opportunity to replace both coolant temp sensors, all of the injectors, and the fuel pressure regulator. I got it all put together and it was still misfiring on one cylinder of the passenger side bank so I decided to do the head gaskets. When I had it all apart, I should have replaced the lifters, but didn’t. I did take this opportunity to replace all of the coolant lines with a new kit from Atlantic British as well as replace the PCV lines, the flame trap, have the exhaust manifolds HT coated black, and clean up the engine compartment a bit. After it was all put back together, it was running right, displaying even fueling and combustion on both banks and responding to O2 sensor fuel control. At this point, I have complete confidence in the EFI system, whereas before installation I had very little. The final piece of the puzzle was a new kickdown cable. While I was in there I also replaced the trans oil filter. Now the truck shifts smoothly, has a ton of power (relative to when I got it), and drives great.
In full disclosure, the lifter tick is still present, and while the new ECU came with a base tune, it could probably use a session with a professional engine tuner to get the most out of the new EFI system and tunable ECU. The kickdown cable could also use a little bit of fine tuning. It also has a small trans oil leak from the new drain plug which I will fix before the sale.
In terms of general upgrades, I did quite a lot. Shocks and springs were replaced with new Bilstein parts as well as a Bilstein steering damper. The engine and trans mounts were toasted and were replaced. All of the suspension bushing were replaced with an Atlantic British polybush kit (blue). I swapped the studded tires with a new set of Michelin LTX m/s2 which are better suited for on-road use. I mounted those on Defender sawtooth wheels (which I would like to keep). I am selling the truck with the Michelin tires on the painted wheels that are in the pics from Taylor’s website.
I also had the windows tinted, replaced some broken bits in the interior (cup holder, interior light plastic was very yellow, door pull pockets, repaired loose wood trim on passenger front door, replaced rear tattered seat belts), replaced the steering wheel with a spare in better condition, repaired the broken binnacle surround (plastic piece was broken in several spots. It is an impossible piece to find and would be very expensive if one were available. I used plastifix to fill in missing areas, block sanded it and painted it. It looks great.), I also replaced the disintegrated fiberglass hood insulator with a hand cut dual density woven polyester insulator (while not genuine, the engine compartment looks much better and performance wise it is way better than what was in there). The only real broken piece on the interior is the front passenger seat plastic trim on the base. I believe that this is repairable in the same fashion as the binnacle surround. There are also a couple small marks on the passenger front carpet that look like burns. The console also has some visible wear on it.
Finally, the A/C wouldn’t hold a charge. UV dye revealed a large leak at the high pressure valve. The Schrader valve has been replaced and now the A/C blows cold and holds a charge.
With how these are selling now I would say it started as a solid $18.5k truck. All in all, I have put about $10.5k and countless after work and weekend hours into it in my year of ownership. I have taken it from a great looking truck, to a great all around truck that will last for a long time. I think the truck is awesome now, but I don’t really have room for it as I have a driver and a project.
Info regarding previous sales:
October 2014 Sale by GMR:
Pics of October 2014 Sale:
Blog with pics of March 2014 condition on Taylor’s site:
PROJECT / 1995 Range Rover Classic ~
Pics of March 2014 condition sent to me prior to sale: