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These early Land Rovers are merely the latest formerly affordable
vehicles to suddenly skyrocket in value. So while you're looking at
the price tag on this 1968 Series IIA and wondering if it's a smart
bet, we'll recommend that you buy it and ride the wave, because
they're still going up and owning the best one we've ever seen can
only be considered a smart investment.
The look is as ubiquitous as the grazing gazelles on the plains of Africa, and there's no place on the globe where a Land Rover hasn't gone. Still the most perfectly designed machine for going places man wasn't meant to be, the slab-sided Landie is a triumph of form following function. Most of them are still in rough-and-tumble condition, but this particular Series IIA Rover has enjoyed a comprehensive restoration to a very high standard and it's likely better than new in every way. Does that mean its dirty days are over? That's up to you. But we will say that if you appreciate the utility these trucks offer, this one will not disappoint. The paint has the right gloss for the desert environment, and the flat panels were designed to be simple to repair in the field, easy to spot in tight quarters, and since they're aluminum, lightweight. Panel gaps are pretty darned good, and they were indifferent at best when this truck was new, so that's a definite improvement. Details like the tow hooks on the bumpers, the headlights set into the grille, and the roof rack make it seem like it's ready for an adventure, even if it's just running up to the store.
It's plenty basic inside, but the brown vinyl suggests that someone with a little style was in charge of selecting materials. Three-abreast seating in front works in conjunction with four buckets in back, which fold and stow for cargo. Yeah, seven people in this truck, and nobody's going to feel pressed for space. It's all brand new and it's all been expensively restored, including the door cards, rubber floor mats, and basic controls. The gauges are in the center of the dash to accommodate both left- and right-hand drive, and the shifters in the center manage the 4-speed manual transmission, 2-speed transfer case, and PTO that's a handy little tool. The gauges and switches are neatly restored, the weather-stripping is new, and this is probably as close to what a new Land Rover felt like back in 1968.
It's not fast, but thanks to the fully rebuilt 2.25 liter inline-four, it'll get you wherever you need to go if you've got the time. Only a Sherpa can go more places and again, durability and ease of maintenance were the goals. The block wears correct green engine enamel and that elaborate air cleaner assembly is designed for the dust of the desert and the high waters of the Nile, keeping the Land Rover pushing forward under any conditions. Check out how big the radiator is, the heavy-duty exhaust system tucked up into the frame rails, and the oversized axles designed to really handle the rough stuff. It's all been restored, so it rides and handles as it should, and you'll be surprised how nimble it feels, both on and off the pavement. Simple white painted steel wheels are the right look and they carry pavement-friendly 245/70/16 radials that ride and handle far better than the original lugs.
Is it expensive? Only compared to the inferior trucks out there. Buying the best on a rising market is always a smart move, and if you're in a position to make a move, you won't be disappointed with any of this Land Rover's many virtues. Call today!