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Lot 004: Range Rover Two-Door

Classic & Vintage Cars & Motorcycles, Brightwells Auctioneers and Valuers (13 July 2011)

There is a simple elegance about the original two-door 1970 Range Rover that makes the current generation of luxury off-roaders appear almost absurdly overblown by comparison. Designed by Spen King, it's boxy, minimalist yet perfectly proportioned form was so fundamentally 'right' from the outset that it remained in production virtually unaltered for the next 25 years. The bodywork was not substantially redesigned until the second generation model of 1995 which was an altogether heavier and more complex vehicle than its rugged forebear. All versions are hugely capable machines that are equally at home on the motorway or the school run, or clambering to the top of a mountain.

Built on a box-section ladder-type chassis, much like the contemporary Land Rover, the Range Rover had more sophisticated all-independent coil spring suspension, permanent four-wheel drive and disc brakes all round. Power came from Rover's light-weight all-alloy 3.5-litre V8 engine, detuned to 135bhp. Early examples had fairly basic, utilitarian interiors with vinyl seats and plastic dashboards that were designed to be washed down with a hose. Features such as power assisted steering, carpeted floors, air conditioning, cloth/leather seats and wooden interior trim were only fitted later, when it was realised that it had a far larger market as a luxury vehicle than merely as a more comfortable alternative to the Land Rover Station Wagon.

This 1971 example was purchased by the vendor in 1977 with 49,300 miles on the clock and is one of just 2,537 produced in that year. A huge history file accompanies the vehicle which shows that a replacement engine was fitted in 1978, with a rebuilt replacement for that unit being fitted in 1989  after the car had been taken off the road, so has done virtually no miles since installation. In 1983 a good second hand rear chassis section was put in as a repair, the car being well maintained throughout its working life with numerous service bills included in the sale.

Although the vehicle has been dry stored it has deteriorated and will require extensive restoration, including the rear section of the chassis and inner wheel arches and sills. These early Range Rovers are becoming highly sought after and this example, whilst requiring full restoration, represents an opportunity to acquire one while you still can.

Lot Details
Auction Classic & Vintage Cars & Motorcycles
Brightwells Auctioneers and Valuers, Leominster, Herefordshire
TypeCar
Lot Number004
Estimate£1500-£2000
Outcome NOT SOLD
Hammer Price-
Hammer Price (inc premium)-
Year1971
Condition rating0
Registration numberYWN 834J
Mileage-
Chassis number35500818A
Engine number34129080F
Engine capacity (cc)3528
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors