94 Discovery manual transmission

DiscoRB

Well-known member
Jan 4, 2019
59
4
Arkansas
I found a 94 manual trans a while back and have been bugging the owner to sell it to me. Unfortunately it looks like a divorce might force him to sell. I read an article where the author wrote that he wouldn’t be shocked to find out that there are 200 or less running and driving in the US today. Does that sound about right to you guys? It doesn’t really matter I getting it I would just like more info. Thank a lot and I’m sure many more questions to come.
 

discostew

Well-known member
Sep 14, 2010
5,143
141
Northern Illinois
I'm sure the #s are low. Not really sure how you would find that info. I think the GEMS engine management trucks with a hand mixer are very hard to find. So that would be '96 to '99. But I'm not sure when they stopped building them, I kind of think it might have been till'97.
 

stu454

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2004
5,353
17
Atlanta, GA
I'm sure the #s are low. Not really sure how you would find that info. I think the GEMS engine management trucks with a hand mixer are very hard to find. So that would be '96 to '99. But I'm not sure when they stopped building them, I kind of think it might have been till'97.
I think that '97 was the last year.

I have a cloth SD '96 with a manual coming up for sale soon.
 
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robertf

Well-known member
Jan 22, 2006
4,105
44
-
Ive seen more manual d1s than nas 110s, so there had to be more than 200 imported.
As far as how many are still on the road, while running around town I might see 2 D1s a year that I dont own not including rover events or going to an indy shop. Theres a ton of people here and I think were up to 5 dealers, 2 of which originally sold them. Im guessing 200 road legal manuals in the US is high.
The real rare bird is the 2 door freelander.
 
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DiscoRB

Well-known member
Jan 4, 2019
59
4
Arkansas
The owner had the head gaskets done and all associated work and a cam out in it and while at the same shop asked them to install a new clutch which they did and messed up. So there is a new clutch in there that’s inop. Those can’t be too hard to work on can they? I’m sure that statement will bite me in the ass.
 

Gordo

Well-known member
I’ve got two 96 manuals. One is an SE7 and the other is an SD no sunroofs. To my surprise the SD was the rust bucket. The SE was rusty too but not as bad. We did a father son project on the SE for my sons first car. Lucky kid. It is sweet! Locked, axles, mud tires new paint and nice interior The SD rusted around the roof at the pillars leaked bad and created a mess. The body is off now for parts (yes the boy may wreck the SE). It’s turning into my third series/defender hybrid now. Too far gone to save as a D1
 

_ExpeditionMan

Well-known member
Dec 11, 2017
105
6
Fort Worth, TX
I also have two D1's both with R380s. Both are 96 MY but built in 5/95 and 8/95 with GEMS. Both are SE7s. One has a body that isnt worth saving but a great chassis (absolutely no rust). The other is rust free except for a light surface rust in the front floorboards and the cargo area. The second is my daily.

Anyone driven both R380 and auto trucks off road? I struggle with the low range causing bucking when I get on and off the throttle. Often wonder if the auto would soak up some of this drivetrain slack better. The 5spd sure is fun everywhere else.
 

Tugela

Well-known member
May 21, 2007
4,181
98
Seattle
I've also experienced the driveline backlash on the R380 driving at low speeds off-road (in a TD5 D110). Part of it is inherent to the components, part of it is the condition of the components, and part of it is driver technique. I've also ridden in the same truck with a much better driver at the wheel and you'd think you were in a BMW automatic. The R380/LT230 combo takes more finesse to operate smoothly than other combos I've driven.
 

strat440

Member
Mar 18, 2011
11
1
Northern Virginia
I have a 95 and love it. For years, the only issue was that shifting from 1 to 2 was aways rough. I'd only previously driven a manual many years before, for a short time when I learned how to drive stick, so I always figured the problem was my lack of skill. Then the master cylinder went out last year. When I replaced it, voila, suddenly the problem going from 1 to 2 was fixed. Not sure if it was directly related to the master cylinder or it was something else that I tightened during the repair, but it was a nice surprise.
 

fishEH

Well-known member
Jan 26, 2009
6,747
124
Lake Villa, IL
Anyone driven both R380 and auto trucks off road? I struggle with the low range causing bucking when I get on and off the throttle. Often wonder if the auto would soak up some of this drivetrain slack better. The 5spd sure is fun everywhere else.
Yes. I have a 94 manual and have had 96 and 98 auto's. There is zero bucking in the auto's. That, dorking around shifting offroad, difficulty throttling the gas/brake when offroad, and my desire for my kids to be able to drive it have me seriously considering an auto swap. :/
 
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_ExpeditionMan

Well-known member
Dec 11, 2017
105
6
Fort Worth, TX
Yes. I have a 94 manual and have had 96 and 98 auto's. There is zero bucking in the auto's. That, dorking around shifting offroad, difficulty throttling the gas/brake when offroad, and my desire for my kids to be able to drive it have me seriously considering an auto swap. :/
Sacrilege! Dont auto swap.. Those R380 NAS trucks are too rare!

That being said, my dad has an old 1st gen explorer and there is zero slop when in low range off road. I would almost classify it as relaxing. I enjoy the challenge of a stick offroad and have driven manual toyotas so I know not all manuals feel like riding a clacking mule in the rough stuff.
 
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discostew

Well-known member
Sep 14, 2010
5,143
141
Northern Illinois
It's true
Yes. I have a 94 manual and have had 96 and 98 auto's. There is zero bucking in the auto's. That, dorking around shifting offroad, difficulty throttling the gas/brake when offroad, and my desire for my kids to be able to drive it have me seriously considering an auto swap. :/
It's true. ZF builds a great trans. I think tyhe shift pattern is 1/2 then lock up converter, 2/3 lock up, all the way up. This is so they have better engine braking in all ranges. Then being able to slap it back and forth between 3 and 4 is pretty great. I drive a stick shift little crap car for a daily driver. I would say I'm good at shifting my own gears. Still way prefer the ZF trans offroad.
 

fishEH

Well-known member
Jan 26, 2009
6,747
124
Lake Villa, IL
Why can't they learn to drive a stick?
They could, but this thing is a pain in the ass. I've driven stick shift before, learned when I was 16, and those vehicles all shifted way easier with much less "finesse" required. Simply put, the R380(mine at least) is a sloppy bitch.
And let's face it, manual trans are a thing of the past. They simply aren't being offered any more so where is the value in them learning? It's like taking Latin instead of Spanish or German or French in high school.
 

mastercamper

Well-known member
Nov 18, 2006
770
1
Erwin TN
I bought a 95 5 speed and love it and it was unmolested. No sunroofs but has rust in the rear having to replace floor pan and in some other parts. 6 disc changer works and that a bonus for me and its white.
 

robertf

Well-known member
Jan 22, 2006
4,105
44
-
I just got back from a test drive after replacing a worn out front driveshaft and all 4 u joints. Maybe Im used to how it was prior, but the driveline is running great

97 I guess SE. Dealers around here didnt seem to put letters on the doors until 98
 

pinkytoe69

Well-known member
Jan 14, 2012
1,289
57
minnesota
They could, but this thing is a pain in the ass.

Simply put, the R380(mine at least) is a sloppy bitch.

Ah, I didn't know that. I have a 6 speed X5. It's a dog cause it's the 3.0, but it shifts like a car. It may be my daughter's first vehicle in a couple years...

And let's face it, manual trans are a thing of the past. They simply aren't being offered any more so where is the value in them learning?
Unless you're 80+% bumper to bumper all the time, it's simply a better way to experience driving. When you are the torque converter and control the shifts, you are more one with the vehicle.

#SaveTheManual 😁
 

Swedjen2

Well-known member
Sep 12, 2018
323
48
California
Who knows, some day you may find yourself driving a Series 2A or earlier. Then, you will be overwhelmed by feelings of sadness and regret as you realize that you never learned to operate a stick shift. The experience will leave you a broken man, a lesser man.
 
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