More Fizz For Range Rover...
Tuesday 6th May 2003
By Toby Knight
Range Rover without a V8 is like champagne without the fizz, and that's why the six-cylinder diesel engine has never quite given the luxury off-roader the power it requires. But here's some news you can raise a glass to - a new oil-burner is due to arrive within two years, and it will raise the cylinder count to eight and offer plenty of bottle.
Set to be named the Td8, the forthcoming model will replace the current diesel, which uses the 3.0d engine from BMW's X5. That unit can't offer the power or torque to rival the likes of Volkswagen's 5.0-litre V10 diesel Touareg. And even the revised version of the six-cylinder motor, using the uprated 218bhp unit from the blue propellor's 730d, is still considered to be inadequate for the Range Rover's bulk.
The decision to drop the BMW engine was also brought on by the huge cost in buying the units from the German firm, so the new model will be powered by one of the first products to be developed in a joint venture between Ford and PSA Peugeot Citroen. Engineers from the two companies have produced a 'modular' powerplant which will spawn two diesel variants. While the Range Rover will get a V8 displacing between 3.6 and 4.0 litres, a 2.7-litre engine can also be made in a V6 layout which will be used across the Jaguar and Volvo ranges. No power and torque figures have been confirmed for the V8, but 250bhp is expected.
Although Range Rover buyers will have to wait a couple of years for the new diesel, customers after something smaller can get their hands on a revised Land Rover Freelander from October. It features a new front end and improved interior, plus Ford's TDCi diesel engine.
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.
My next Ford.....