• 1992 Range Rover County V8: What’s It Like Owning One of the Luxury SUV Old Guard? [Reader Story: LEGO Technic Contest]


    1992 Range Rover County V8
    [Photo: troverman]
    This review was written by troverman, a guest writer competing in TFLtruck’s Lego Technic™ contest. See rules and conditions for entry at this link.

    1992 Range Rover County V8: One of the Original Luxury SUVs

    This story is about a vehicle I’ve owned many years: a deep green 1992 Range Rover. In addition to being my daily driver and a towing vehicle, I used it extensively off-road. It took me to many places standard vehicles just can’t reach. Although I ended up selling it a few years back, it remains one of my favorite vehicles of all time.

    1992 Range Rover County V8
    [Photo: troverman]
    Back in the 1990s, the Range Rover was among the most luxurious and expensive SUVs money could buy. Factory features my vehicle had included heated and power-adjustable leather seats, genuine walnut burl trim, power windows, power locks with remote keyless entry, security system, power heated mirrors, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a power glass moonroof, a 6-CD changer and 7-speaker stereo system with subwoofer, and a memory system for the driver’s seat and outside mirrors. As an English vehicle in the early 1990’s, it’s build quality wasn’t the greatest. However, its British Charm was abundant! The vehicle never left me stranded, but I did have to deal with some small glitches.

    How Does an Original Range Rover perform?

    The Range Rover was stock when I originally bought it, with factory 205/80 R16 tires. Like all classic Range Rovers, this one had a fully-boxed ladder frame, solid front and rear axles, full-time four-wheel drive with low range and viscous-coupling center differential, and mostly aluminum outer body panels. The Range Rover was unique in that both front and rear axles were “full-float”. It’s a setup like those on 3/4 ton pickups today, where the axle “floats” inside an assembly that carries the weight of the vehicle, rather than carrying the weight on the axle shaft itself. The front and rear differentials were offset on the same side, allowing the driver to pick a line allowing rocks or obstacles to pass harmlessly under the opposite side of the car.

    The 1992 Range Rover also had 4-wheel disc brakes with ABS, which was rare at the time. It also used long-travel coil spring suspension at all four corners. Under the hood was a 3.9-liter, all-aluminum pushrod V8. It’s an engine that served the original Range Rover well over its 26-year lifespan. They originally purchased the rights to build it from General Motors back in 1970. Stock, its fuel-injected engine produces 180 horsepower and 227 lb-ft of torque, coupled to a ZF four-speed automatic transmission. Its axle ratio was 3.54:1. The original Range Rover had permanent four-wheel drive; no two-wheel drive version was available.

    As a towing vehicle, the 1992 Range Rover was rated for 5,000 pounds in high-range, and a full 7,716 pounds in low-range. With a sturdy 2-inch Class III trailer hitch, factory-prepared wiring for a 7-pin trailer plug, V8 engine, rugged box frame and 4-wheel disc brakes, the Range Rover is a capable tow vehicle. With limited horsepower and torque, it was slow up hills, but it always felt secure.

    1992 Range Rover County V8
    [Photo: troverman]

    The 1992 Range Rover Country Excelled Off-Road

    On off-road trails, the Range Rover was effortless. I added 33-inch BF Goodrich KM2 mud-terrain tires, a 2-inch body lift, and a 2-inch suspension lift for better ground clearance. To toughen it up, I also added some differential armor, a steel Mantec raised air intake, an ARB front bull-bar bumper, a Warn XD9000 winch, and some Hella off-road lighting. Mud, snow, and rocks are the norm for New England trails. And on those trails, the Range Rover excelled.

    Nowadays, Land Rover has now taken a different approach and emphasizes on-road performance over off-road. However, the 1970 – 1996 Range Rover Classic is truly a timeless and unique vehicle that combined top-level luxury with nearly unparalleled off-road capability.

    Editor’s Note

    Thanks to troverman for sending in this retro review! Check back to TFLcar.com for even more news, views, and real-world, classic reviews. If you have questions, ideas, or content you’d like to share with TFLcar, send an e-mail to info@tflcar.com. If you have a truck-related item, send an e-mail to ask@tfltruck.com! TFL reserves the right to publish submitted reviews, and exercises ownership over the content contained in content published to TFLcar.com.

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