Dilemma. Our wannabe Landrover is absolutely hanging. It’s well over half-way to the moon with 180,000 miles on the clock, it’s been abused off-road, used as a skip and we’re running out of paper to list the necessary repairs. Plus, it’s just a Freelander.
I found the answer to both these issues deep in the Shropshire countryside when I happened to drive past a sad looking 90’s Jeep Cherokee rotting in a farm hedge. Ant used to have one in his family, it was hilarious fun. It had low box, rear limited slip diff and a crap auto box that when combined with the 4 litre straight 6 petrol engine makes it hilariously terrifying to drive. However, the Hedge-Jeep was diesel which although definitely not as exciting, it does mean that I don’t have to find space on the driveway for a Shell fuel tanker as well.
After a quick check of it’s MOT history online and a brief nose around, I was knocking on the farmhouse door. The Farmer and his son were vehicle enthusiasts but had little interest in the Jeep. After hearing about some of their other project vehicles, I could understand why. Disappointingly they didn’t want to sell me a Cortina.
The Farmer was a little unsure if he wanted to part with the Jeep. He wanted to pull it out the hedge and see if it would run before coming up with a price.
I returned the following week armed with a trailer and a small amount of cash. The Farmer had managed to drag it out of the hedge but hadn’t managed to get it running. The Jeep was in a sorry state, wheels rotten, rock-sliders hanging off and some serious looking rust under the rear. Oh and the entire cast of Bugs Life had moved in. It was clear that I had not only had found the perfect 30th Birthday present, but also a replacement 4×4 to annoy the Off-Road Heroes even more than the Freelander.
Now to buy some Bruce Springsteen.