The Land Rover Freelander was first launched in 1997. Within the same year, it became an instant hit and has sold more than 500,000 units in its nine-year life span. The Mk2 variation released in 2006 gained recognition as one of the best off-roader among its class. In 2009, Land Rover took the model a notch further with its Freelander TD4_e and its pioneering start-stop system. Two years later the said model included a two-wheel drive variation. Read on to see what other exciting upgrades the Freelander holds in its brand new design.
The Land Rover Freelander sports a neat shape that draws from the looks of its previous generations. The front bumper has been redesigned, alloy wheels broader in design, the colours more diverse, and the grille offering several finishes according to the designated engine. A more subtle change is the silver rim surrounding the Land Rover badge instead of gold. Rear lights are the more obvious change to the current model, as they include not just a black surround but also clearer inner lenses. The current model still retains some timeless elements from the previous generation, such as the traditional styling cues from the D-pillars and black B-pillars. Space is generally not a problem in the interior. Front and rear passengers won’t have to worry about headroom; two average sized adults will have no problems settling at the back.
Although the present Freelander retains many elements from its previous models’ cabin design, the interior still includes major improvements where it matters. The vehicle now as more upholstery options and new instruments included to keep up with the new market’s demand. The driving position is high up enough for comfort and visibility, giving you access to the upright dashboard and the broad glass expanse. The bonnet and narrow A-pillars enable a better off-road performance for the Freelander. And despite the car’s 1910mm width and 4500mm length, you’ll have no problems parking it in common spaces. In fact it’s much easier to park compared to the regular family hatchback.
The TD4 diesel engine is not just quiet and smooth in performance. Its low-rev response is quick, the six-speed gearbox notch-free and tight, and the steering kept light and direct. You’ll also have no problems transitioning through the pedal action. Even when you step up the pace, the drivetrain is consistent in its impressive performance. The 2.2-litre diesel unit is just as powerful, with its power of 148bhp at 4000 rpm.
Although the interior includes the basic functions, some of its elements are rather aged in nature. The dashboard’s base architecture and switchgear aren’t up to date; the green backlit digital readouts resemble the 1980s Casio. Such elements won’t fly against the more innovative and contemporary feel of touch screens.
Boot space is inadequate at 755 litres. If you’re intending to bring the Freelander on a long trip, you may have some problems fitting in that extra luggage or additional purchases on the ride back home. Thankfully the space is more than enough for everyday use and can still fit a full-sized spare tyre under the floor.
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