"THE" Rover V8 (Post #135) 3/30/2009

Our beloved Rover V8 was the Engine of the Day for Sunday March 29th, 2009, on Jalopnik. Enjoy.

From the article…

If you’re looking for an engine with way more than its share of weird plot twists in its story, you’ve come to the right place!

This aluminum V8 started life as a Buick in 1961, was shared with Pontiac and Oldsmobile (where it benefited from Turbo Rocket Fluid), then crossed the Atlantic and was installed in the MGB-GT V8, the Triumph TR8, and countless Land Rovers.

Changing a gas guzzler (Post #94) 6/13/2008

Well I am half way through the tune up. Oxygen sensors are in and my sum gas mileage benefit of spending 250$(US) is….Zero. My first tank came in right at 13.5mpg.
To say I was disappointed would not even begin to describe my mood. I dearly love my Land Rovers and of all the things that upset me most, even if I could go out and replace just one of them with a fuel efficient vehicle I’d loose my shirt on the trade in. Trading the Classic is totally out of the question as it is paid off and 15 years old. No dealer in their right mind would give me anything close to an amount I’d be happy with.
And the selection of vehicles is terrible. Jeep put out a diesel Liberty a couple years ago. And they have a 3.0L V6 diesel for 2008. They boast 450 miles on a tank. EPA estimates of 18 city/23 highway. Hell that’s almost tolerable at 4.30$(US) a gallon for diesel fuel. They are only offering the CRD on the Grand Cherokee model for 2008. Who made that decision?
Lets look at the Land Rover Website. There you have it, TDV8. Boasting a 25.1 mpg in a RANGE ROVER.

Lets look at the Discovery 3. “The TDV6 engine has been developed to cope with the specific requirements of a Land Rover: strength and durability when operating in dusty environments, on steep inclines and wading through rivers.” I couldn’t have said it better if I tried. TDV6 available.
Lets look at the Freelander 2. I would at first say I wouldn’t drive one, but hey, 37.7 mpg out of the 2.2 TD4.

And finally the Defender. “DefenderĀ“s all new 2.4 litre Diesel engine produces a class-leading 360Nm of Torque (90 percent of peak power is on tap from less than 2,200rpm to over 4,350rpm) and enhances its legendary capability yet again.” This is not a vehicle you worry about fuel mileage with but RANGE of the tank.

So to summarize, 4 different diesels. NOT ONE AVAILABLE IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
Mercedes has diesel vehicles but no SUV models. Isuzu has diesel motors, I know our cousins in Australia speak highly of them. None available in the USA.
I could go on for an hour. Every auto maker has a diesel available for each of their product lines, EXCEPT for the American auto companies. I can’t even get a diesel motor in their Chevy 1500 or Ford F150 pickup trucks. I have to order a 3/4 ton model or more to get one.
So where is all this logic headed?
I want to replace my petrol 4.2 for a diesel. I have for a while. I know I’ve read a few threads on many boards about people who have done it themselves. What I’m wondering is, if I ordered the diesel motor Land Rover used in 1990 versions of the Classic and had it shipped here, how much would I be out?
My friend JagGuy says, “Why? you could buy a lot of fuel for 6000$.” I answered, “range”. But really I think its for economy. He is correct about the fuel cost, it’s just under two years worth at 4.00$(US). But then I’m right back where I was.
I made a Fuel Cost Comparison spreadsheet. You can download a copy with this link (MicroSoft Excel).
Depending on the numbers you use. You can see savings in just a couple of years that would pay for a motor swap.

Lets use these numbers for my 2003 Discovery.
$4.00 Price per gallon
13.5 Miles per gallon (mpg)
$0.30 Cost per mile
22 Fuel tank volume (gallons)
297.00 Range in miles
$88.00 Cost per tank
48 miles per day
$14.22 Cost per day
$3,555 Cost at 12000 miles

With a diesel getting 25 miles per gallon.
$4.60 Price per gallon
25 Miles per gallon (mpg)
$0.18 Cost per mile
22 Fuel tank volume (gallons)
550.00 Range in miles
$101.20 Cost per tank
48 miles per day
$8.83 Cost per day
$2,208 Cost at 12000 miles

Total savings compared to the Petrol 4.6
$5.39 Difference per day
$161.71 Difference in 30 days
$1,967.43 Difference in 365 days

How about the 2.2 TD4, getting 37 miles per gallon?
$4.60 Price per gallon
37 Miles per gallon (mpg)
$0.12 Cost per mile
22 Fuel tank volume (gallons)
814.00 Range in miles
$101.20 Cost per tank
48 miles per day
$5.97 Cost per day
$1,492 Cost at 12000 miles

$8.25 Difference per day
$247.64 Difference in 30 days
$3,013 Difference in 365 days

So you can extrapolate that after 2-3 years for the cost of a decent used car in America you could put a diesel in your beloved Land Rover and begin to recoup your investment.
How many more years do you plan on driving your Landie? I intend to keep my Classic forever, and why wouldn’t I if I can still get parts. And when I can’t there are dozens of axles and transaxles to choose from, upgrades even.

What are the costs? I will be looking into this in the coming months and I’ll compile some of the threads to find what will work and how much.

Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.

July 8th, 2005 (Post #61)

July 8th, 2005

There is a huge update in the works. I have started on it now twice, once yesterday, and again today, having deleted several days work. Very frustrating.

JagGuy and I have the engine in. We started on it April and finished it after three long weekends. JagGuy has all the skill necessary for a successful transplant. And it showed. He had the heads off and the engine built before I could get in the shop each weekend. He has the luxury of Fridays being fun days and he used his “fun” day for my engine. What a great friend.

With the engine swap we found several other problems. I will start listing them and I will probably forget some as there were many.

It was indeed a head gasket problem but with that there was also a problem with the radiator. It was clogged again. We noticed that when we revved the engine the hoses would flex. Meaning there was a lot of pressure in the system. Frustrated I replaced the radiator with a new one from Atlantic British. Cooling problems vanished.

Heater Core
One of the final things to be blown by the old engine was the heater core. I have heard horror stories about getting the dash off to replace this part. I will wait for a weekend in September or October when it gets cooler to replace this. I bought the replacement core when it came up on British Pacific’s Steve’s Deal of the Day.

The wife
While I’m sure some of you were expecting me to say I was replacing my wife, I have not. She has been harrassing me lately about the costs of the BWB. Keeping a 12 year old car on the road in good working order is hard. It is harder when it was designed in a British Pub by 12 drunk engineers. But for my piece of mind and to reassure her that I was not spending the milk money for frivolous toys I pulled a report out of Quicken of all the auto repair expenses. I was surprised by the amount, surprised in a good way. She was surprised in a bad way. 2800 dollars (US) was the tally for the period since I made the final payment back in November 2004.

Not bad for all the things I’ve bought for the engine and including oil changes for both cars. She still believes with all her heart that a $450 a month car payment would be cheaper than putting parts on the paid off Rover. I have now classified the Rover as a restoration project. So the costs are easier to stomach as I am restoring a car, just like on TV!!!!

Steering seal
The morning after I got the BWB home with all the overheating problems we planned to return her to the shop in Edmond, it was a cool April morning so I figured the heating problems would be less if I went in the morning. After I pulled into the gas station to fill up I got out and noticed the long red stream of fluid leading from the street to underneath the Rover. Transmission fluid, but from where?

After a long look it was the steering box. Since ATF will burn and considering the blow back to the exhaust I drove her home defeated and disappointed. We put a seal on the next weekend.

Steering Shaft
Once again on sale at British Pacific. If you look at the steering shaft you will notice a rubber grommet there. Mine is hard as a rock and cracked. Obviously failed. Now the question begs why can’t we just replace the rubber bits. Well I bought a new shaft and will investigate if the old can be repaired when I get it off of there. Hammerin’ Dan observes that the heat from the headers is probably to blame in the rubber failing. Possibly some asbestos wrap might be in order.

Brake Switch
The ABS lights came on and with some investigation and a clever way to short the diagnostic plug I learned my brake light switch had failed. I got a replacement on sale from British Pacific’s Deal of the day. The installation was not any fun due to the location and the contortionist position you have to get in. Also my eyes don’t work that well up close and so most of the install was done while guessing on a blurry image.

The steam that escaped from the blown heater core filled the cab with nasty antifreeze steam. The radio immediately from that day forward would act like it lost power often loosing the code. Occassionaly it would not work at all. I thought sure the steam killed it. I was wrong. The ignition switch is failing. You may say, “what the hell?” Well it would be a good question.

The accessory function of the switch that powers many things like the windows and other stuff is apparently shorting out or not making connection. So among the other things the ignition switch is failing and needs some help.

Had to clean the carpets again due to the antifreeze leak inside the cab. Due to my previous planning I did not have to remove the center console. Sweet!

Having spent a good three hours under the BWB during the engine project I noticed that none of the hangers were replaced the last time I had the exhaust worked on at University Muffler. That is disappointing cause I like those guys their work is just not very good. I had it in there again recently to have a torn exhaust pipe fixed. Due to the hangers being unhooked the only place the exhaust was attached had stressed the pipe to the point that the silencer at the rear was about to break off. I had them cut it off and weld on a pipe. It changed the sound some but not too bad. Well the weld for that section broke. So I took it to Discount Muffler just up the road from the office and had them put a good weld on it. It cost me 25 bucks but it’s now welded. I will come back to them to have the new cats welded in as soon as I buy them.


I broke up the archive in to sections based on the year. I’ve been doing this
Rover Log for 3 years now. Wow.

So be patient with me as I get the new pages up. Thanks for reading and happy
rovering. Tell your friends about the site.