Review 4 of 85|
from LR Colorado Springs
Year / Model Reviewed:
2004 Freelander SE3
Unique styling, handles well off-road and on, nice sound system, enjoyment of open-air driving.
Poor gas mileage, no low gear for off-road, no locking storage compartments.
First, this vehicle belongs to my girl-friend, but I drive it as often as she does (more so on camping and hiking trips), so she asked me to write this review. We both agree that the Freelander SE3 is a fun, versatile, and underrated vehicle, one with unique good looks and fine handling off-road and on. For those who don't know, the SE3 is a two-door, convertible version of LR's Freelander. It has twin sunroofs that pop off, and a back section that is removed by unlatching a few clamps. (A soft-top version of the back section is available.) Once these are detached, the SE3 offers the open air fun of a Jeep Wrangler, but without the same jarring, top-heavy driving experience. It handles very capably off-road (but it's not a rock-crawler), and on the highway it rides smoothly, with responsive steering and decent horsepower. I'd prefer a low gear for off-road situations, but the LR's Hill Descent Control is an adequate replacement. Although the Freelander is notorious for various problems (see other reviews), many of these difficulties were more common on older models. The '04 received a facelift, and as far as our LR is concerned, we've had no problems. Overall, the SE3, like all LRs, has its quirks (driving position a little high, no locking glovebox), but it more than makes up for them with a unique and fun driving experience. I definitely recommend it.
Similar Products Used:
Jeep Wrangler, Nissan Xterra. The SE3 is much better on pavement than these two, but is also capable off-road.