Premium midsize SUV; Built in England
  • 4-door wagon
  • 4-door wagon
  • longitudinal front-engine/4-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $1,800 – $7,500*


1997 Land Rover Range Rover 4.6 HSE


1997 Land Rover Range Rover 4.0 SE


1998 Land Rover Range Rover interior


1997 Land Rover Range Rover interior


1998 Land Rover Range Rover 4.0 SE

Pros:
  • Acceleration (4.6-liter)
  • Antilock brakes
  • 4WD traction
  • Passenger and cargo room
  • Ride
Cons:
  • Control layout
  • Entry/exit
  • Fuel economy
  • Price

A Range Rover is extremely capable and comfortable. It’s also been considered the ultimate 4×4 in terms of luxury and snob appeal. Still, it’s difficult to justify the still hefty prices, when so many competent competitors are on the market. Prices for 1996-up models, with more-modern styling, are far higher than those of earlier-vintage Range Rovers.

Overview

With a design dating back to the 1970s, this British-built luxury sport-utility vehicle came in two forms for ’92: base Range Rover and the County. Both 4-door wagons came with a 178-horsepower, 3.9-liter V8 engine, mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission. Permanently engaged 4-wheel drive was standard. Antilock brakes were standard on County models, but unavailable on base Range Rovers.

Yearly Updates

1993 Range Rover
Range Rover of North America changed its name to Land Rover North America, and a Range Rover LWB joined the lineup, as a longer-wheelbase rendition of the County. Base models were gone. The added length increased rear leg room by seven inches. The LWB got an enlarged 4.2-liter version of the aluminum V8, making 200 horsepower. A height-adjustable air suspension system was standard. The standard Range Rover County gained an Electronic Traction Control System.
1994 Range Rover
This year, the County model added the electronic air suspension introduced in 1993 on the LWB edition.
1995 Range Rover
The County LWB was updated as an early 1995 model, gaining dual airbags and side door-guard beams, as well as a redesigned dashboard. A new 4.0 SE model arrived in mid 1995, with different styling that featured more-rounded corners. The 4.0 SE used a new chassis and electronic air suspension, plus a new 4.0-liter V8 rated at 190 horsepower.
1996 Range Rover
A fresh lineup arrived for 1996. The old-fashioned Classic model was dropped and a new flagship went on sale: the 4.6 HSE, with a 225-horsepower 4.6-liter V8 engine and 18-inch alloy wheels.
1997 Range Rover
Only minor changes were evident this year.
1998 Range Rover
Changes were minimal for 1998, with the same two models available: 4.0 SE and 4.6 HSE.
1999 Range Rover
A new 4-wheel electronic traction-control system went into Range Rovers. During 1999, a small run of high-performance Callaway versions went on sale.
2000 Range Rover
Body-colored bumpers and mirrors, and new-look alloy wheels for the base SE model, highlighted changes for 2000. Standard equipment now included auto-dimming outside mirrors, tinted turn-signal lenses, and revised instrument graphics. Several limited-production appearance packages debuted during the 2000 model year.
2001 Range Rover
This year, the 4.0 SE adopted the larger V8 engine of the uplevel 4.6 HSE to become a 4.6 SE. Also for 2001, the navigation system added several features designed for off-road use, and HSE got a no-cost “Luxurious Carpets” trim option with special carpeting and seat piping.
2002 Range Rover
Land Rover’s flagship lost its base 4.6 SE model for 2002, leaving only the top-line 4.6 HSE version. A redesign was in the works for ’03.

Engines

longitudinal front-engine/4-wheel drive

In 1992, all Range Rovers had a 3.9-liter V8 engine. For 1993, the 3.9 was joined by a new 4.2-liter V8. Mid 1995 brought a 4.0-liter V8, followed in ’96 by a 4.6-liter version for the 4.6 HSE. The aluminum V8 engines actually were descended from a Buick design of the 1960s. All Range Rovers had a 4-speed automatic transmission.

ohv V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.9/241
Engine HP 178-182
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 220/232
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

12/15

13.8

ohv V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 4.2/241
Engine HP 188-190
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 236
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

13/17

14.3

ohv V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 4.2/261
Engine HP 200
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 251
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

12/15

14.1

ohv V8
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 4.6/278
Engine HP 222-225
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 280-300
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
4-speed automatic

12/16

11.6

Road Test

Though not as spry as some domestic SUVs that cost far less, a Range Rover performs well on-road. Unlike many others in this class, the ride is delightfully supple. Suspensions absorb bumps and ruts easily and allow only a little bouncing on wavy surfaces. All models feel rock-solid on the roughest roads, but lower-profile tires on the recent 4.6 HSE do impair ride comfort.

The 4.0-liter V8 is smooth and quiet, even at full throttle. Although it feels somewhat lethargic with the automatic transmission in Normal shift model, performance improves in Sport mode. Still, a late model with the 4.0-liter V8 took 11.4 seconds to reach 60 mph–not exactly a swift jaunt. That model averaged only 14.3 mpg, in a trial that included a lot of highway driving. Acceleration with the 4.6-liter is a bit better, but fuel economy dips to close to 10 mpg.

Despite pronounced body roll in turns, Range Rover clings to the road quite well. Corners may be taken with good grip and reassuring stability. However, a relatively soft suspension and boxy profile make the early Range Rover sensitive to strong crosswinds.

Not everyone cares for the buslike driving position on early models. Steering is heavy and slow, and requires frequent correction to maintain the desired direction, especially in crosswinds. Climate controls on early models are confusing, but better after 1994. Power-window controls are mounted at an awkward angle on the center console, and many switches are hard to reach while driving.

Passenger and cargo room are abundant in the long-wheelbase models, with plenty of space for five on richly padded seats. The back seat is huge, though a high step-up into the interior makes entry/exit difficult. Owners get an expansive cargo area, as well as many bins and cupholders, and a host of handy features. Aluminum body panels save weight and are impervious to rust, but they could dent easily and be quite costly to fix. Our test vehicles have suffered a variety of electrical glitches, so be forewarned.

Ratings

Model Tested: 2002 Land Rover Ranger Rover 4.6 HSE

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 4
40%
Fuel Economy - 2
20%
Ride Quality - 3
30%
Steering/Handling - 3
30%
Quietness - 4
40%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 2
20%
Room/Comfort Front - 9
90%
Room/Comfort Rear - 7
70%
Cargo Room - 7
70%

Other

Value - 1
10%

Total: 42

Specifications

4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
100.0 175.0 71.4 70.8
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
82.8 21.6 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
38.4 37.3 41.0 32.7
4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
108.0 183.0 71.4 72.2
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
58.0-76.3 21.6 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
38.4 37.3 41.0 39.7
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 1999 Range Rover 4.0 4-door wagon

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Front Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision 120
Injury 43
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Climate control
Description: If the heating, air conditioning, and ventilation systems do not work properly, a new circuit board (logic control) must be installed. (1997)
Engine misfire
Description: Some vehicles were built with a crankshaft timing gear that was not properly hardened. If it has already been replaced, you will see red paint on the engine’s front lifting eye. The company is replacing the gears beyond the normal warranty period. (1995-96)
Fuel odors
Description: When refueling, the pump nozzle may click off at full flow requiring a much slower flow due to a twisted breather pipe at the fuel-tank filler neck. (1992-96)
Hard starting
Description: Difficult starting or a no-start is probably due to a bad ignition coil which has overheated. (The pitch may have even leaked out.) The ignition module is the root cause. (1992-94)
Oil leak
Description: A revised output seal can remedy transfer gearbox oil leak. (1992-98)
Transmission leak
Description: Water can enter the transmission breather tube and, in cold weather, freeze causing the transmission to leak. (1995-98)
Transmission noise
Description: The transfer case makes a whining noise, but a gear-lever kit has been designed to fix it. (1994-95)
Accessory belt
Description: Serpentine drive belt comes off when idler pulley breaks. Should be replaced as a dealer recall. (2000)

Recall History

1993-95 Classic
Description: Stress crack may develop in plastic fuel tank of some vehicles, which may ultimately result in evidence of fuel from underside of vehicle when filling (or especially, overfilling) the tank.
1995
Description: Chafing of cruise-control wire can cause insulation to fail; electrical grounding can cause driver’s airbag to deploy.
1995 w/4.0-liter V8
Description: Idler pulley can fail, resulting in serpentine-belt damage or disengagement.
1995
Description: Rear radius arm can fail; a broken arm can allow movement of rear axle and vehicle instability.
1995-98
Description: Certain underhood hose and tubing components can fail, allowing fluid to leak.
1995-99
Description: As a result of water entry, subsequent freezing, and ice blockage, transmission breather tube can become clogged and expel transmission fluid from dipstick onto hot engine components.
2000
Description: One or both bolts that retain brake caliper to axle may be loose or possibly missing.
2001
Description: Water contamination of the automatic-transmission oil can lead to transmission failure, resulting in unintentional vehicle movement.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.