But almost universally, the early reports derided the outgoing motor. Its replacement was long overdue. It was wheezy, anaemic, underpowered, rough, dismal. One reviewer said that joining a freeway would no longer be a white-knuckle experience. And here I was thinking my JK joined the motorway flow very well. Too many motoring writers have a horrible habit of slagging an outgoing car or part of a car. Fair enough, I suppose, but where were their voices warning us what a load of crap we were driving, while the vehicle was still in production?
I’ve lived through this before. My Land Rover Defender was one of the last imported with the 300TDi engine. When the Td5 arrived, the earlier powerplant was derided as noisy, agricultural, underpowered, rough, unreliable and … you name it. In fact, the 300TDi is today often sought after by those who know Land Rovers. When the Td5 made way for the current Ford engine, the slaggers quickly jumped on it, of course. Land Cruiser owners had a taste of the same thing when the wonderful straight-six turbo diesel made way for the V8 diesel. Both are worthy engines, but all of a sudden the six was “problem laden”, “clunky”, “too heavy for its output” and so on.
No wonder that journalists are down the bottom with car salesmen when jobs are ranked by public perception of the credibility and integrity of those doing them.