Long-term update: Using our Range Rover as a Tata van

Long-term update: Using our Range Rover as a Tata van

2005 Range Rover Vogue
As much as Land Rover’s PR people like to downplay it, the British carmaker is now owned by India’s Tata, in a role-reversal that took more than 60 years to play out. While we’re still denied the chance to drive the new Range Rover, our own “L322” Range Rover Vogue has been doing a great job as the family minivan.

My parents moved back to the homeland after 34 years in the UAE, as is customary for long-time Asian expats here who get sent packing once they hit retirement age. So they did what we poor brown Asians always do — take a bunch of stuff with us, from apples to appliances, as far as the airline will allow.

But we did the airport run in style with the Range Rover, folding down the rear seats flat, removing all the cover attachments, and turning the back of our Vogue into a cargo hold, complete with expensive leather-and-carpet linings that match the green exterior paint.

The rear seats were easy to fold and flip forward. The roll-up cargo cover attachment was a lot harder to remove, because it is longer than the boot opening. Our car even came with an optional rubber boot-floor mat.

What you see in the picture is 100 kg of luggage, with space for more. The best part is the rear of the car still doesn’t sag, because of the self-levelling electronic air suspension which, thankfully, still works. We could even lower the suspension to ease loading. With the seating capacity reduced to two, we used another car to carry the rest of the passengers, obviously.

2005 Range Rover Vogue 2

So far, aside from an occasionally-flickering headlight and one mirror that doesn’t electrically fold any more, we haven’t had any breakdowns in almost 5,000 kilometres of driving over the last 6 months since the last major service. It drives silky-smooth, just like a new car. Upgrading from our Jeep Grand Cherokee V8, we have no regrets.

We’re surprised ourselves that we’ve done so many miles, considering we own 3 other cars and also get free cars all the time. We’re loving it so far. If the next 6 months remain relatively trouble-free, I may just become a Range Rover loyalist, despite my issues with their local reps.

Original Mileage When Bought: 99,980 km
Latest Mileage To Date: 104,600 km
Latest Average Fuel Economy: 17.9 litres/100 km
Cost of Latest Problems: Dhs 0
Cost of Latest Maintenance: Dhs 0

Total Non-Fuel Running Cost Since Bought: Dhs 8480

Read all 2005 Range Rover long-term updates

What do you think?



  1. Sorry about your parents leaving.

  2. My FJ is also used in our family has a cargo hauler and some times used for shifting houses. I even heard on of my aunties saying oh look he’s got rubber floor mats, why dont we bring the goats in his FJ next Bakra Eid 🙂

    • lol.. love the FJ for being rugged and easy to maintain.. next Eid, Goats hauled in your FJ, Inshallah 😉

    • Author

      I’ve seen goats being brought in Corollas, although I sure as heck ain’t doing that.

  3. Excellent and honest update. See Mash..if you reach 200k klm without major issues then I will be a fan also and may get one oneday..infact all what I hear around is horror stories about RR’s reliability 🙂

    • Author

      Won’t keep it for that long, but several of them in the classifieds seem to have reached that. You just have to be able to afford the maintenance, which can reach 5-figure amounts per year.

  4. Nice, but 5k kms is not considered that much, maybe you are not used to drive your own cars for long distances but here in uae people drive their cars for long daily trips, usually around 30k a year at least

  5. Mmmmm and in ONLY 5 K mirrors stopped folding and headlamps are not functioning properly 🙂
    Is it only me or this looks bad

  6. “Upgraded from the Jeep?!” Says who?

    Also looks like the Jeep has a better exit angle from the rear bumper and the Ground Clearance is higher as well on the Jeep. Plus it has a rear windshield wiper & the electric mirrors still work

  7. “Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought”—-Percey Shelley
    Missing the Range Rover ride…..

  8. you have an S2000, you’re one lucky family! :p

  9. 1997 Toyota Previa… hands down best minivan ever

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