Arriving in 1994 the P38 Range Rover took the baton from the Range Rover Classic to transport people in comfort and luxury around the world, or just up a muddy track.
Two petrol variants and a diesel were thrust under the bonnet with the most powerful being the 4.6 litre V8. Many changes were made to the new Range Rover when it arrived on sale to tempt owners out of their previous model.
Behind the technology of the day and sumptuous supportive leather seats, the changes went deep, including a new welding technique to make the chassis stronger than ever before.
Mechanical traction is the P38 party piece, this is before a time of computing power to rival a space shuttle being crammed into a computer chip smaller than a fingernail. If you were to get up the mountain there was only so much the car could do for you, however, unlike the previous generation, it did offer some get out of jail free cards, including a suspension setting that could be activated if the vehicle was beached to give a little extra clearance.
Having owned the vehicle for a year as a mild side project the current owner has decided that with three P38 Range Rover’s in the family it is time for one to leave the stable. The decision wasn’t made lightly, especially after the owner tells us that he has just had a new headlining done, a bugbear of many classic cars that won’t be a worry for the new owner of this one.
As with any Range Rover the car would suit all types of driving from long journeys or weekend trips away to getting the matching set of General Grabber All-Terrains tyres off-road.
The new owner will be able to take advantage of all of this car’s ability straight away. The affection lavished on this car recently is shown both in the invoices and how the car presents.
The owner advised a complete service book is accompanied by all the original owner’s books and a V5 document to be handed over with the vehicle. There is a recent invoice for £1,200 to carry out a full service, including spark plugs. Added to this was GPS sender unit, screen wash sensor, and fan belt.
Since the current owner was not willing to let a single aspect of this Range Rover slip with age, expensive parts have been replaced as needed, this includes two new ignition modules, a replacement heater matrix, and new Dunlop rear airbags. Away from the mechanical parts, a brand new genuine Land Rover heated windscreen has been fitted, and all four wheels were refurbished a year ago.
Pull the driver’s door handle and swing the door open to reveal an interior that has worn its years well. The steering wheel catches the eye first, the owner advised it is a restored Tulipwood.
Next to catch the eye is the extended walnut dash that makes its way to the gear selector. Let your eye fall to your side as you sit in the comfy driver’s seat and the light-stone leather appears in good shape and is still comfortable with bolstering that feels up for the job.
A glance at the driver’s armrest displays how well kept this car has been with little wear considering the mileage covered and the light leather colour. Above is a sunroof that tilts at the push of a button, and along with the electric seats, including the headrests, operated smoothly during our time photographing the vehicle.
Step in the back and the supple leather continues without signs of heavy staining or damage. Finally make your way to the rear and the split tailgate opens up to reveal a disk player, also holding the satellite navigation disk, which was displayed on the screen in the centre console and is in working order.
Place a finger by the driver’s headlight and begin walking the length of the car to an undisturbed body line, continue on around the rear, stopping to spot the swan neck tow bar, and the only obvious disruption is a dent on the near side rear quarter, fortunately, the paintwork hasn’t suffered.
Continue on until you reach the front and it was the only dent noticed on inspection. As to be expected with the mileage there were stone chips at the front that were made clearer by a recent wax and polish applied to the car.
Step back, and the Oslo Blue paintwork shines as the sun breaks through the clouds along with the wheels that still look excellent after the refurbishment the owner told us took place last year. All the tyres showed plenty of tread and made little fuss or roar when out for a drive along the local roads.
Walking back to the rear it was clear the parking sensors could do with a touch up however they function without interruption or fault. Look further down and you will see two exhausts either side of the bumper, the owner advises that this a stainless steel system with a very mild sound enhancement.
Crank the 4.6 litre V8 to life and a wholesome welcoming thrum greets you that gives way to a steady idle that remained rock solid. This being the second generation of P38 it has the desirable Bosch injectors and engine management system.
Click through the automatic gearbox and each notch engages quickly leaving no doubt that the unit is in excellent working order. Run through the gears and each shift is smooth while the suspension evens out the worst of the British roads.
A push of the air suspension lifted the car up and a prod to send it closer to terra firma quickly got the car sitting low before another press returned it to standard ride height, a reassuring demonstration.
Today the relative simplicity of this era of Range Rover has spawned a collector’s following, many driving off into the sunshine in the best examples and locking them away.
People want to get the good ones that have lived easier lives while they can, it may be time to get hold of a good condition one for yourself before all that is left are worn out examples on the road to nowhere.
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2001 Range Rover Vogue 4.6 P38
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