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Old 27th August 2021, 17:10   #1
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Default The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review

The only dialogue that came to my mind is that of The Joker - “I’m a dog chasing cars, I wouldn’t know what to do with one if I caught it. You know, I just do… things.”

For the greater part of my life I have been chasing the dream of owning a Land Rover Defender. It was supposed to remain a dream forever. But suddenly now that it has been fulfilled, I don't know what to do!

It has been a bit over four months since we got the Defender and I have now been able to gather my senses. The next step is to write an ownership log on Team Bhp. But before that, a couple of pictures of our beauty, the Land Rover Defender 90 XS in Corris Grey

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0468.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_05642.jpg


Defender Pros:

• Stunning retro looks and road presence. Sorry, not retro "looks", it is ancient!

• Huge ground clearance for off-roading. Well designed underbody with important things well protected

• Mechanically simple, less things to go wrong

• Unlimited potential for modifications, money is the only limit. Huge amount of aftermarket parts are available starting from chassis to interior trims.

Defender Cons:

• Cramped interiors, not the most ergonomic vehicle

• Bumpy ride and vague steering

• Difficult to maintain motorway speeds, especially in Europe

• Huge turning radius, it is worse than a truck

• This is what Jeremy Clarkson had said about the old Defender -

Quote:
The last Defender was launched just after the Second World War, then not really altered at all for 67 years.

And when the company did pull the plug, lots of Brexit-type people rushed about saying they would put it back into production themselves, so that proper British men — men, d’you hear — could continue to drive a car that smelt of damp dogs and was full of sharp edges.
A walk around video of the Defender -


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Old 27th August 2021, 17:39   #2
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A bit of history of the Defender. Source - https://www.johncraddockltd.co.uk/hi...defender-l316/

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-12.19.16.png

Image Source: Land Rover Defender Brochure year 2013

Land Rover Defender L316

The Defender began life as the Land Rover One Ten (110) in 1983 and swiftly evolved into the Land Rover Ninety (90) a year later in 1984. These replaced the earlier Land Rover Series I, II and III vehicles, and were the only other Land Rover models in production at the time, alongside the*Range Rover.

Land Rover 110 & Land Rover 90

The Land Rover 110 started production in 1983. Its name, which was also referred to as the Land Rover One Ten in advertising and handbooks, reflected the 110” wheelbase it was composed of. Only a year after the 110 started production, the Land Rover 90 also entered production. This featured a 93” wheelbase, from which it took its name.
These vehicles were like the Series III Land Rover they replaced; however, they did feature a few key differences. These included a full-length bonnet, newly designed grill, and wheel arch extensions.
Both the engine and several body panels were carried over from the Series III, however both the 90 and 110 were treated to several mechanical modernisations. These included the addition of coil springs, a permanent four-wheel drive system with two-speed transfer gearbox, a modernised interior, and a one-piece windscreen. One of the Land Rover 110 models was initially built with a part-time 4WD system. However, this was dropped the following year due to low sales.
The Land Rover 90, launched in 1984, featured even more modernisations and upgrades. From the permanent addition of wind up windows (a departure from the sliding panels previously) to the introduction of a 2.5 L diesel engine with a modern fuel-injection system and four-speed transmission. These models also made the switch from leaf spring to coil spring suspension, which improved off-road driving and ride comfort.

Becoming The Defender

Following the introduction of the Discovery model in 1989, the 90 and 110 models underwent a name-change to become the Land Rover Defender.
The change saw the Defender receive a new 200Tdi engine, which allowed the vehicle to cruise more comfortably at high speeds and tow heavy loads on hills while remaining economical.
The 127 also changed name, becoming the Land Rover Defender 130. While the 127” wheelbase remained the same, the composition of the vehicle changed and instead was made from scratch. In this respect the Defender 130 was terribly similar in basic structure to both the 90 and 110 apart from its longer wheelbase.
In 1994 a new engine was introduced, the 300Tdi, which was fitted in both Defender and Discovery vehicles. In South Africa, a unique Defender was available between 1997 and 2001 with a BMW M52 engine as well as the normal Tdi engine.

Evolution of The Land Rover Defender

As with any other vehicle, the Defender evolved over time. In 1998, a new 2.5 L turbodiesel engine was introduced called the Td5. The driving force behind this was the upcoming changes to the Euro III emissions regulations. Further refinements were made to this engine in the 2002 model year for the same reasons, as emission regulations were set to become even tighter.
Several trim levels were also introduced throughout the years. In 2002 the XS 44 made its debut. Marketed as a luxury vehicle, features included a heated windscreen, heated seats, air conditioning, ABS and part-leather seats. Some tweaks were also made to the dash centre console, and front electric windows were made available for the first time in the Defender series.

2007 Year Model Updates

Further changes were made to the Defender in the 2007-year model. The Td5 engine was replaced with a 2.4 L Ford Duratorq engine mated with a six-speed gearbox.
Other changes were also made to the interior. The old dashboard layout was stripped out and replaced with a full-width fascia. New instruments were also introduced from the Discovery 3 and a new heater and ventilation system were also installed.
In response to a change in EU legislation, the four inward-facing seats of the Defender were stripped out and replaced with 2 forward-facing seats. This reduced the Defender 90 to a four-seater vehicle and the Defender 100 44 to a seven-seater.
Some minor changes were also made to the exterior. The bonnet was reshaped to allow for the new engine. Air vent flaps that previously featured on the windscreen were also removed and the passenger and rear loading doors were also re-engineered.

2012 Year Model Updates

Upcoming changes to safety regulations meant a wholesale redesign of the Defender was soon to be on the horizon. For 2012 models, this meant a new 2.2 L ZSD-422 engine with the same six-speed gearbox. This engine also featured a diesel particulate filter.
The only other change to this year model was the reintroduction of the soft top body style, which was bought back to the general market following customer feedback.
Limited & Special Edition Vehicles
Throughout its production, the Defender has enjoyed a number of limited and special edition runs. These include:
* Land Rover 90SV (1992)
* Limited Edition (LE) (1997)
* Defender 50th (1998)
* Heritage (1998)
* X-Tech (1999)
* Tomb Raider (2000)
* G4 Edition (2003)
* Defender Black (2002)
* Defender Silver (2002)
* Defender SVX (2008)
* Bespoke Paul Smith Defender (2018)
* Defender Works V8 70th Anniversary Edition (2018)

Several special edition Defenders have also been released overseas for specific markets. These include:
* Sahara
* 55th Anniversary Defender 90
* Braemar

More details about the evolution from Series I to Defender can be found in this link - https://www.landrover.co.uk/explore-...r-history.html

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-11.58.56.png

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Old 27th August 2021, 19:01   #3
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Prelude:

Those who know me can vouch for my mad love for the old or classic Defender. My laptops, hard drives, phones and any other storage device is full of Defender pictures clicked or collected over many years. A little more detail can be found in my thread on the Range Rover Sport ownership. So I won't iterate it again, but here is a screenshot of that and a very interesting part highlighted -

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210827-14.35.07.png

So, the question is what happened that changed my mind. Ever since I got the Range Rover Sport, I have been extremely happy. As I had said before, it was a dream come true. But the moment I saw a Defender coming from the opposite direction, there would be this pang in my heart, a momentary stopping of heartbeat and then a few minutes of remorse for not being able to get one.
Another thing about me is that I don't like to sell the cars that I buy. So I always want to buy vehicles that can run forever, rugged simple ones that can outlast me if maintained properly. So why not a Toyota? Last year I wanted to buy a Land Cruiser. The Prado is sold as Land Cruiser here in the UK. I like the vehicle overall, though I don't like the looks that much. The good thing was that they have a basic manual version. So I enquired about it and had almost finalised a deal. But the dealer said that it would be manufactured on request in Japan and would take eight months to arrive! It was a boon in disguise. I got time to think and then realised that even if I got the Land Cruiser I would feel the same every time I saw a Defender.

Fast forward a few months and I decided to look for Defenders. Found a good one online as there was lockdown and everything had to be done virtually. Finance was available with a meagre down payment and I applied for it. Unfortunately it got rejected as I did not have visa left for the tenure of the agreement and they would not reduce the tenure even though I was willing to pay the increased monthly amount.

The Surprise:

I laid low for quite a few months thinking that it would not be possible to buy a Defender during this stint in the UK. But I kept on looking just out of habit. The prices kept on increasing and the good ones were now commanding prices close to the new Defender! One fine day I just clicked on a button showing "Contact us for Finance" on a listing for an Aintree Green Defender. It went to a finance aggregator who took my details. After half an hour I got a call back that my finance request would be approved after a few checks. I told her about me previous experience and that my visa was valid for only a couple of years. She assured me that it would not be a problem and the only thing that was needed was a good credit score and a valid UK license! I could not believe that this was really happening and was still skeptical. I had filled up all the details and by that evening the approval was in my mailbox. I was jumping with joy and got a call from the finance team that they would release the money to the dealer if I was happy with the Defender. A video call was arranged with the dealer and everything was finalised. The dealer had excellent feedback and the car looked fine in the video call.

A few pictures of the Aintree Green Defender

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_1845.png

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_1853.png

The shock

Next day I got a call from the finance team that the deal could not be approved as the car had failed their background check. I started thinking that Defenders are not for me. Something or other inevitably comes up! I had a chat with the dealer and he was equally surprised as he had been dealing with the finance company for 30 years and this was the first time it happened. The dealer said that he would sort it out with the finance team. I waited for a couple of days. The final verdict from the finance team was they could not do anything. Apparently the dealer had transferred the money for that Defender to a friend of the owner during the purchase as the owner did not have an online bank account. Since the name on the transfer did not match with the name on the book of the vehicle, the finance company rejected the loan request on it.

Back to search

The only good thing out of this was that I had an approved loan amount in my name and I could buy any Defender as long as it passed their checks. But problem is that I was not able to find any other good Defender within that budget. Finally I had to drop the idea and started looking for Discovery 2. I had been fascinated by the Camel Trophy Discoveries and I thought they were the next best thing to a Defender. Kept on searching and finally found a good one. But the asking price was close to 20K. I started thinking that if I am paying that much amount then why not wait for a Defender. I am sure that with time and effort I can find a good one.

Finally after a couple of weeks I found the perfect Defender. It met my criteria as I had very little ask. My only requirement was it had to be a Defender, it does not matter whether it is a 90, 110 or 130, whether it is a hard top or a soft top, whether it is a station wagon or a utility! But Rajsri had a few non negotiable criteria. It had to be a 90 station wagon i.e it had to have those sliding rear windows and the alpine windows. It could not be white or maroon or red or ... Basically it had to be either Aintree Green or Santorini Black. But the one I had found was grey. So I showed her a picture and she immediately loved it. The only problem was that it was a lot more costlier than the previous one. So if I had to get it I would have to arrange for a much bigger down payment or apply for a higher loan. I did not want to re-apply for a loan as I did not want to mess with the already pre-approved one. But I did not have any savings.


The pictures of the Defender from the Kent Motors website -

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-defender_1.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-defender_2.jpg

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Old 27th August 2021, 20:32   #4
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The buying experience

I called up the number on the website for Kent Motor Cars and spoke to Paul. Told him about my interest in the Defender on their website and that I had a pre-approved loan in my name. He asked me about the details of the loan and said that he could give me a better deal through their finance company. I told him that I had got this loan after a lot of hiccups and about my visa status. He said not to worry and got my driving licence number. Half an hour later he told me that the car is booked in my name! All I had to do was to pay 200 online to book it and arrange for the down payment within 3 days if I liked the vehicle. We had a video call and he showed me the vehicle. Paul sent me the walk around video as well. The Defender looked good and I paid the booking amount. At that point I did not know how to get the down payment. All I knew that I would beg, borrow or steal for this Defender!

Long time back I had read The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho and there was a line there - “And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”

I had never believed this.... before that day! I was pre-occupied with the thought of how to arrange for the money and had started going through the mails. Found a mail from my credit card company among a few others. I just reluctantly opened it and then what I read had sent my heart racing. It said that they were going to increase the limit by a substantial amount. If I did not agree with it, I had to go on to my account and decline. Otherwise it would be auto approved after a couple of weeks. It also said that I could accept it immediately and it would be reflected on my account within 15 minutes. Can you beat that!! It would be the answer to my problem, provided the dealership accepted down payment with a credit card. Called up Paul and he said that it would be possible but there would be a substantial amount of overcharge or something like that. I did not care, all I knew was that it was possible.

Paul told me that the car would be ready in 2 days as he had to get the MOT done and that I could go on Saturday to collect the vehicle. He said that the loan documentation would be done on that day and it would hardly take 15 minutes. One cannot imagine my tension for the next two days. All I had in my mind was what would happen if I did not get the loan. Rajsri assured me that I would get it as Paul sounded so confident. I could not tell anyone about the proceedings in fear of being ridiculed if the deal did not go through. Only told Ani Da and Reshmi Di and requested if Ani Da could drop us at the dealership on Saturday.

After a sleepless Friday night into Saturday morning, we were at Ani Da's house before time! From there we went to Kent Motors. As we were entering the premises Rajsri and I got a glimpse of the Defender. Rajsri looked at me and asked is it really the Defender that we were going to buy? I had the same question. In-spite of looking at the pictures online for the umpteenth time, the visual impact of the vehicle standing there with that impeccable poise and grandeur, was unexplainable. We were just bowled over even before getting close to the car. Paul came out to greet us and he had a warmth and charm that immediately put us at ease. I had this sense that I could depend on this person. We were given the keys and Paul asked me to see the vehicle and then confirm only if I was absolutely satisfied with it.

Ready for a test drive

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_1836.jpg

After inspecting the vehicle for about 20 minutes Paul showed me into his office where we sat down to fill the online form for financing the vehicle. It was a few excruciatingly painful minutes as we waited for the response with bated breath and fingers crossed. Finally the message came that the loan was approved. If it had not been for covid, I would have jumped on Paul with joy.

Tense moment!

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_1821.jpg

In the meantime, Ani Da and Reshmi Di had found out their next car

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_1834-copy.jpg

A picture with Paul after the formalities were completed

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_1873.jpg

The new owners of the Defender

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_6402-2-copy.jpg

The first drive

After clicking a few pictures it was time to start driving! It had been quite a while since I drove a manual vehicle, 4 months to be precise since selling off the Mini. Also, it had been almost 2 years since I last drove the Bolero and the Thar. So it took a while to get used to the Defender.

A very short video of driving out from Kent Motors.



We drove around the beautiful area of Kent for a couple of hours before heading back towards London to celebrate! A few pictures from the drive.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-l1010490hdr1.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-l1010455hdr1.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-l1010465hdr1.jpg

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Old 31st August 2021, 18:17   #5
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Living with the Defender

First and foremost, the Defender is not an easy car to drive and people don't buy Defenders for creature comfort and luxury. It is a purpose built vehicle that has long outlived its original purpose. It was built as a rugged go anywhere off-road vehicle that was simple to fix. It is said that most of the people in Africa have seen Land Rovers as their first vehicle. But that is history, those Land Rovers have been replaced with the Toyotas and Izuzus. Even in its backyard i.e the English countryside, the Defenders have largely been replaced with the Japanese pickups. But there are still a large number of people out there who would drive nothing else but a Defender. For me it has not been that difficult. The Bolero and Thar have very similar traits. In fact the Bolero 4WD is much closer to the Defender. The Thar is much more agile, faster and easier to drive than the Defender. Our Defender is the XS Station Wagon, so it gets some convenience features like heated seats, air conditioner, heated front and rear windscreens etc. It has the black pack as well, so it has got those beautiful 16" sawtooth alloys!

The Defender turns heads everywhere it goes and it feels at home whether it is in the poshest places of London or in the remotest parts of Africa. The design is so iconic that it stands out in the crowd of vehicles. Then there is the camaraderie among the Defender drivers. Defender owners wave when they pass each other! It is a unique thing and I have never seen this with any other vehicle. I think it is our way of saying - "We are in the same boat and I understand your pain brother"

Jokes apart, living with the Defender is pretty special and it has been a lovely experience so far. I just wish Mahindra had done the same with the Bolero 4WD that Land Rover did with the Defender, i.e. update it keeping the core values intact.

Now on to some details about the Defender 90 2.2 XS Station Wagon -

Exterior

The same basic design language for the Defender had been there for 68 years and is evident from this picture below -

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210831-14.56.31.png

Image from www.motortrend.com

So there is little left to say about this iconic design that has not been said before. Since its launch in 1984, there is hardly anything that has changed to differentiate the later models, apart from the raised bonnet that appeared in 2007 in order to accommodate the taller Ford Transit engine. Some people call it the power bulge, but it is not, because there was no power difference between the new engine and the one it replaced.
The Defender 90 is a short vehicle, shorter than most of the current generation hatchbacks. But it is very tall and stands at more than 2 meters! So it is not the ideal car to go to shopping malls with their low parking spaces. The Defender has got massive ground clearance at 250 mm and very short overhangs. It means that it can go over almost anything in your sight without breaking a sweat. The Defender is also very narrow, so it is quite easy to place it on the road in cities or in trails while offroading.

It is impossible to find fault with a vehicle when it looks so good from every angle! If I were asked to change things I did not like, I would not be able to find a single point

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0478.jpg

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The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0561.jpg

Interior

The interiors were updated in 2007 but it is still very basic by any standard. I personally love the functional no nonsense black interior with the hard wearing plastics that showcase its ruggedness and long lasting history. The driving position is very upright, the B pillar is very close and restricts movement. The seats are comfortable and well padded, but cannot be compared with the bucket seats of the modern vehicles. I like it this way because it gives space to move around a bit and keep the blood flowing on those long hauls. The seating position is high and gives a commanding view.

The dashboard design is very upright and looks industrial. The instruments are easy to read. All the controls are well placed and within arm's reach. The air-conditioning system works well, pumping air through top mounted vents. But there are no vents on either side of the dashboard and after a while you will feel distinctly different temperatures between the left side and right side of your body

The heater is volcanic, but very hard to regulate. The seats are heated as this Defender has the cold climate pack. But it is nowhere close to the heated seats of the modern cars. It can strictly be termed as mildly warm.

The Defender is equipped with power front windows, with manual sliding windows in the rear. The power windows do not have one touch functionality.

The interiors are not to everyones liking, but I find it beautiful

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dashboard_1.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dashboard2.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dashboard3.jpg

The switches are large and feel sturdy

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-switches.jpg

The clock at the top of the dashboard looks nice

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-clock.jpg

The music system is a single DIN Pioneer MP3/CD player with Bluetooth.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-music_system.jpg

Front passengers are given a large grab handle that is helpful when offroading.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-grab_handle.jpg

The bottle jack and spanner is kept under the passenger seat in the battery compartment

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_5452.jpg

The roof lining is black Alacantara

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-alacnatara_roof_lining.jpg

There are two seats at the rear and they are foldable.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-rear-seats.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-rear_seats_folded.jpg

Storage spaces are limited in the Defender. There is no glove box, but there is space below the grab handle where a few thing scan be kept. This Defender is fitted with a central cubby box with cup holders. The cubby box is big and can hold quite a few things. There are no bottle holders or any door pockets. There is a small net at the rear door to keep a few things.

Last edited by BlackPearl : 2nd September 2021 at 16:49.
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Old 31st August 2021, 21:45   #6
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Default Re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl - Land Rover Defender 90

Specifications

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210831-17.22.30.png

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-12.27.47.png

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-12.28.21.png

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-12.28.39.png

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-12.28.50.png

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Old 1st September 2021, 17:23   #7
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Engine and Gearbox

The 2.2 Litre Euro V compliant engine might sound a little small for a Defender, but I think it is adequate for a vehicle of such old design. No one buys a Defender for winning signal to signal sprints. However, there was a 400 Bhp Works V8 engine available and I have heard that it was a stonker! The 2.2 engine is from Ford Transit and is the most refined one to be ever fitted in a Defender, but it is still quite vocal and hardly a strong point of the car. It takes ages to pick up speed but has an impressive amount of torque which is available quite low in the rev range. The top speed is restricted to 145 Kmph, which is quite high for the Defender. I cannot imagine driving it at a higher speed! This engine has got a single mass flywheel which should be more durable than the dual mass ones and resistant to warping, but the NVH is more.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-13.21.35.png

It returns around 9.7 Kilometers per litre for combined highway and urban driving. This is what I am getting after driving for close to 5000 Kilometers. Our Range Rover Sport with a 3 Litre 256 Bhp engine and automatic gearbox consistently returns more than 10 Kilometers per litre!

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_8051.png

The 6 speed gearbox has a very short ratio first gear and the sixth gear is very long for highway efficiency. The slotting needs a firm hand but shifts quite cleanly. However one has to be careful while releasing the clutch, otherwise there will be a clanking sound from the drive train. This is common to all Defenders, unless the drivetrain is upgraded.


Ride and Handling

The chassis is a steel ladder frame with live axles at both ends and single rate coil springs. One cannot rush through with the Defender. The best way is to drive it steadily as sudden movements are not good for such a tall vehicle. The on-road ride is bouncy due to the offroad biased suspension and there is pronounced body roll. Bumps and potholes send a jolt through the chassis. Steering is lazy and understeers a lot but is power assisted, so not very hard to turn. Turning into narrow lanes requires some amount of judgement due to the huge turning radius.

Offroad

Off the road, the Defender comes into its own. The huge ground clearance, the short overhangs, ample articulation... everything points to the reason why the Defender is considered one of the best in offroading. It feels at home in the jungles, mountains and deserts. The Defender is designed to tackle extreme climbs and descents with ease. That is why countless emergency and rescue services still rely on the old Defender every day. It has permanent 4 WD and the the central diff can be kept open even in 4 WD Low mode. I have not seen this mode in cars like the Pajero or Fortuner. Before seeing the Defender, I had the understanding that the central differential has to be locked in 4 WD low mode. I have not gone off the road much, only did a few obstacles. The Defender is much more capable than what I could throw at it till now.

A few pictures

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-l1012731.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-l1012742.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-l1012733.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0335.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_4065.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0333.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0367.jpg

Safety

Our Defender model is equipped with ABS and TCS, but safety is the biggest let down in the modern world. There are no airbags and pedestrian safety is a term that had not been coined when the Defender was designed. The meme "No airbags, we die like real men" was most probably started by some Defender lover!

Last edited by BlackPearl : 2nd September 2021 at 04:46.
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Old 1st September 2021, 20:00   #8
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Default Re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl - Land Rover Defender 90

Accessories and modifications

Our Defender is equipped with a few accessories like the A Frame protection bar (front nudge guard) with PIAA auxiliary lights, black checkered plates on the bonnet and the sides, side protection runners, multi height tow bar and snorkel. The sidelights and tail lights have been changed to LED ones.

A Frame Protection Bar or Nudge Guard

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210901-15.45.39.png

Wingtop Chequer Plate

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-wingtop_protectors.png

Side Protection Chequer Plate

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-chequer_plate_protection_kit.png

Side Protection Runners

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-side_protection_runners.png

Multi Height Tow Bar

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-multi_height_tow_bar.png

Mantec Snorkel

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-mantec-snorkel.png


A few pictures of the actual car with the accessories -

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-nudge_guard_with_lights.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-side_steps.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-mantec_snorkel.jpg

The spare wheel was not a sawtooth alloy, so we changed it. Bought the alloy from a shop in the Billing Offroad Show.

Before

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_5126.jpg

After

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_5142.jpg

Dashcam

The dashcam installed on the Defender is quite advanced. It is Thinkware U1000 dual dashcam with radar module. The image quality is very good and there are loads of features like Parking Surveillance Mode, Impact detection, Motion detection, Forward Collision Warning System, Lane Departure Warning System, Red Light Camera Alert, Speed Camera Alert etc. This is one of the most advanced dashcams I have seen. More details can be found on this link - https://us.thinkware.com/u1000/

Last edited by BlackPearl : 2nd September 2021 at 03:38.
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Old 1st September 2021, 20:57   #9
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Default Re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl - Land Rover Defender 90

Servicing

We got the Defender serviced at Lookers Land Rover in West London. The place is just 1 mile from where we live and was very convenient.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_5044.jpg

It was the 72K mile/7 Year servicing. Dropped the vehicle off in the morning.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_5038.jpg

The online tracker was updated as and when the vehicle was going through the different service checkpoints. They had updated it with a video of the vehicle as well.

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-screenshot-20210629-14.42.09-copy.png



Got the vehicle back in the evening that same day. Service cost was less than what they had initially estimated. The service advisor said that the Defender is in top notch condition. Always feels good to hear that about your vehicle.

Invoice

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_8054.png

Serviced and ready

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_5062.jpg

Last edited by BlackPearl : 2nd September 2021 at 15:24.
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Old 2nd September 2021, 05:37   #10
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Default Re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl - Land Rover Defender 90

Conclusion

Not a single day has passed, since we got the vehicle, without me thinking that "I really have the Defender!!" Despite all it's flaws, there is something in it that evokes such emotional attachment. It has character, a soul that sets it apart. It is not a cheap vehicle, in fact the prices have appreciated so much that I had to pay a lot more for this vehicle than what it costed six years back! For the price, the interiors are crude, it is sluggish, noisy, drinks heavily, uncomfortable and unsafe and yet, for me, it is the best vehicle in the world and I would not settle for anything else!

A few pictures before signing off!

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0466.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0313.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0301.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-dsc_0563.jpg

The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review-img_6746.jpg

Will keep updating the thread, thanks for reading!

Last edited by BlackPearl : 2nd September 2021 at 20:29.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 06:02   #11
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Default re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!

Great review of a legendary vehicle! Some cars may be old and have serious flaws, but still never look out of place today and remain as desirable as they were when they were first launched. This is one, the Countach is another.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 08:50   #12
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Congratulations, and what a wonderful review!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
Not a single day has passed, since we got the vehicle, without me thinking that "I really have the Defender!!
Chasing a dream to Living the dream that feeling must be priceless. Looking forward to many rugged travelogues with this beauty!
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Old 3rd September 2021, 09:24   #13
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Default Re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review

What a dream-come-true moment!!! Congrats

The Defender is such an icon even for someone like me who isn't into the off roading scene. Love that menacing colour combo too!
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Old 3rd September 2021, 09:53   #14
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Default Re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review

Congratulations, what a beautiful car. Looks in very good condition, must have been pavement princess

Quote:
“I’m a dog chasing cars, I wouldn’t know what to do with one if I caught it. You know, I just do… things.”
You are not alone but have expressed very nicely, I found it equally hard to explain some (most actually) my own decisions!

Last edited by Turbanator : 3rd September 2021 at 09:55.
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Old 3rd September 2021, 10:36   #15
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Default Re: The heartbeat of BlackPearl | Land Rover Defender 90 Review

What a beautiful car and colour. Thank you for an excellent and exhaustive review - wishing you countless happy miles with your Defender.

--Anoop
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