A Tale of Legends

Text: Danie Botha
Photography: Jannie Herbst

Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon – R369 900

It kind of looks like the original Jeep. But under the familiar skin a whole lot of technology has moved in over the years. This includes traction and stability control, electronic sway-bar disconnect, and front and rear differential lockers. In the cabin it is all plush-ish, with a fancy sound system, air-con and even cruise control. Some said before this test that the more affordable Jeep is not nearly in the same league as the Cruiser and Defender? will the V6-powered Jeep prove the nay-sayers wrong?

Land Rover Defender 110 Fire&Ice SW – R418 000

The latest Defender looks very much like the original – and therein lies much of its attraction, the Landy lovers would say. This is the Fire&Ice limited edition model, which adds fancy paintwork, fancy lights and fancy interior upholstery. Now powered by a Ford turbodiesel engine, coupled to a six-speed manual gearbox, this Defender also boasts a surprisingly fancy turn of speed. A traction control system is said to endow the Landy with unstoppable off-roading abilities? but how will it compare against the front and rear lockers of the Jeep and Toyota?

Toyota Land Cruiser 70 SW – R449 500

It’s bare and pretty basic, and calling it pretty could be a travesty, but few punters will question this Cruiser’s capabilities when the going gets rough. Recent upgrades have added two airbags and a fancy navigation and sound system to the interior. However, the Cruiser’s legendary straight-six, 4,2-litre diesel engine remains unchanged, as do its mechanicals, which are renowned for being virtually unbreakable. But how will the Cruiser, the most expensive Legend in this test, fare against its equally legendary rivals?

* Oh yes off course you want to know who took the crown. Get the full story in the June issue of Leisure Wheels…before the next braai with the manne!