May's Used Van Hero

Andy Picton

01 May 2019, Blog Post

For those wanting on and off-road appeal and rugged reliability

The Land Rover Defender 90 XS Hard Top is been named as Glass’s Used Commercial Hero for May.

Each month, Glass’s Commercial Vehicle editors hold a meeting to name the current Used Van Hero in the UK market – the model they believe offers versatility, durability and outstanding value for money.

Andy Picton, Chief Commercial Vehicle Editor: “If you need a robust 4x4 that can cope with most terrains then look no further than the sturdy Land Rover Defender. There are still excellent examples going through auction halls across the UK.”

WHEN WAS IT ON SALE

The Defender launched in 1983 and emotionally, production of this motoring icon finally ended at Solihull in 2016. The all-new commercial version is under development, with production pencilled in for late 2020 or early 2021.

WHY

If your requirements include robust off road capability with British pedigree, the Defender is the clear choice. With a huge international following Defender delivers when other vehicles simply stop. There are numerous 90, 110 and 130 wheelbase variants available. Accessories make the Defender desirable, with anything from roof racks to checker plating or snorkel exhausts available through the Land Rover accessory catalogue. It is the vehicle for farmers and field sport aficionados alike. The chassis configuration and simple all-wheel drive system make it ideal for off road use. The body panels cope with rough terrain and are simple to replace. The height of luxury is the XS model. This comes with air-conditioning and electric windows as standard. The cargo area ranges between 1,510 and 2,170-litres, with payloads of up to 1-tonne. On and off road it feels solid and sure-footed.

WHAT’S GOOD

Residual values are strong for the Defender and especially on the 90 model. The dashboard is basic but clear and well laid out. This vehicle exudes character and is straightforward to manoeuvre on the trickiest of surfaces. All round visibility is good from Land Rovers fabled commanding driving position. Land Rover have an excellent dealer network, however labour costs can be high leading to expensive bills. Alternatives are available via specialist repair agents leading to a cost effective way of keeping your Defender in top condition. Service and repair parts are relatively inexpensive.

WHAT’S BAD

Given the gruelling terrain some Defenders operate on, check the underside for any signs of damage. Check for oil leaks and signs of wear or damage to brake hoses or suspension. A slipping clutch caused by a leaking rear main oil seal is a known fault. Beware of any warning lights that will point to diesel particulate filter issues. Taller drivers beware, some Defenders fore and aft seat movement is limited by the bulkhead. The seat position also makes the cabin seem narrow for larger drivers. As with all used vehicles, a full service history is great news.

IDEAL BUY

Land Rover Defender 90 2.2TD XS Hard Top - 2015/15 plate with 40,000 miles on the clock.

Retail £24,725 + VAT and Trade £23,075 + VAT

About the author

Andy Picton

Andy PictonChief Commercial Vehicle Editor

Having worked previously for Barclays Asset Finance and LeasePlan in the commercial vehicle sector, Andy joined Glass’s in 2002 as part of the Commercial Vehicle team working closely with manufacturers, leasing and insurance companies, traders, dealers and auction houses. He was promoted to Chief Commercial Vehicle Editor in 2016 and manages our industry-leading team of valuation experts. He loves football, music and obviously commercial vehicles.