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NHTSA — Engine And Engine Cooling Problems


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
52,326 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Land Rover Freelander engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Land Rover Freelander Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #52

Mar 042013


  • 101,000 miles


I purchased this car less than a year ago. Time for inspection and car has many problems looked on line at complaints and I am sick to see what I am in for with this car. Its is sucking up coolant, (bad sign), head gasket, oil in coolant, engine failure. Why was I allowed to buy this car" do we have consumer protection? I purchase car from dealer that sold 85% land rovers. Do you think they new what I was in for? yes!. you shouldn't allow cars to be sold in America if there is no actual fix for the car. I read that engine replacement is bad as original. Will someone buy this car" I wouldn't want to be shady and tell someone this is a good car.

- Angleton, TX, USA

problem #51

Oct 222011

Freelander 6-cyl

  • 95,235 miles
I was driving the car away from my house and the engine died. It wouldn't restart and after about 2 minutes of trying, it started making a grinding noise. When I took it to a mechanic, he said it had blown the head gasket, then the piston rod had collapsed, so the engine was virtually ruined. The vehicle had 96,000 miles on it. Land Rover produced thousands of these vehicles with faulty engines(the 2.5 V-6). I also want to know if there is a class-action lawsuit filed against Land Rover and how to get involved with it.

- Murray, UT, USA

problem #50

Jan 302007


  • miles
Freelander 2002 has had many defects. The transmission failed at approx. 50K miles & was replaced. Power windows failed. A/C hose cracked & repaired. Manifold replaced. Exterior brake lights have been replaced. Electrical power to passenger door lock system have been replaced. Now, at 70K miles the coolant leaking and engine knocking. Not worth replacing engine at this point. This car has cost more to repair than what is was worth. It should be recalled as a lemon & law suit against Land Rover.

- Schaumburg, IL, USA

problem #49

Dec 232010


  • 42,000 miles


Both head gaskets are leaking coolant from all four corners. This is a common failure in this model caused by the cylinder sleeves coming loose. The sleeves contact the head gaskets causing them to leak. Eventually the engine fails. There have been continuing coolant problems with this car since new. When it was a month old all the coolant disappeared. The dealer offered no explanation. Since then the coolant reservoir and temperature sensor have been replaced. It has always leaked coolant.

- New Castle, NH, USA

problem #48

Nov 142010


  • 120,840 miles
1 numerous problems over several years, including (but not limited to) sudden loss of coolant and oil. And yesterday, a strong smell of hot oil, and sudden squealing from right, front wheel. 2 complete loss of engine power. Vehicle is no longer drivable. 3 contacted landrover.

- South San Francisco , CA, USA

problem #47

Apr 042010


  • 101,000 miles
I took my 2002 Land Rover Freelander into Land Rover to be service because my transmission was slipping and the check engine light was on. They said it wasn't the transmission but it was the upper intake manifold, the vacuum hoses, and sensor that was causing the problem. So we had them replace the manifold, hoses and sensors. The service manager keep narrating that it wasn't the transmission. We picked up the car the next day again the service manager assist it wasn't the transmission and the car is running perfectly. As soon as I went about 2 miles my transmission started slipping. I took the car back to Land Rover the next day irritated. The car spent 5 days at the shop trying to find out the problem. Which was indeed the transmission, they didn't offer to fix the transmission but to refund the money and put the old parts back in. Which we agree to unless they guarantee it would be in the same condition. It was making more noise then before, 2 weeks later the timing belt broke. This car is a lemon. Its doesn't make since how the engine, the timing belt, the transmission, and the upper intake manifold all fell at once. The car is not running and stuck in my drive way.

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #46

Dec 012007

Freelander 6-cyl

  • miles


2002 Land Rover Freelander defective engine replacement after taking the vehicle to the dealership, the consumer was informed the engine had a design flaw. The consumer was also informed it would cost$5,800, but the replacement engine also had a design flaw. The vehicle had a coolant leak. The first coolant leak was found during an inspection. The coolant overflow reservoir was replaced due to a crack in the plastic container. The second leak had to be performed due to the thermostat leaking. Upon completion of the coolant leak repair, the technician noticed there was a knocking type noise in the engine. The consumer brought the vehicle back to the dealer and the noise had become louder. After listening to the motor and isolating the knocking noise, it was determined the noise was in the area of the #2 cylinder connecting rod deep into the engine block. A cause was never determined for the failure of the engine.

- Burnsville, MN, USA

problem #45

Sep 082009


  • 60,000 miles
My husband and I purchased a 2002 Freelander type S with around 60,000 miles on it. After owning it for less then a week it started overheating. Each time it would start to overheat, it would require us to immediately pull off the road to prevent the engine block from cracking. I took it into the landrover dealer to find out what the problem could and was told that the cylinder sleeve was slipping causing coolant to leak into the engine and mix with oil and will eventually cause the engine to freeze. The only remedy for this problem was to replace the engine at the cost of 12,000 dollars and that does not include labor costs. After reading quite a few complaints this seems to be the number one problem with this vehicle. Landrover should be at fault and should recall the faulty parts in the engine!

- Honolulu, HI, USA

problem #44

Aug 192009


  • miles
I own a 2002 Freelander SE that has had nothing but problems that have left the car stalling on the road or overheating. I have all repair paperwork and have obeyed all regular maintenance schedules. The engine should have been replaced but Land Rover refuses to make the necessary repairs. Other issues have been experienced throughout the life of the car. The vehicle was purchased new.

- King Of Prussia, PA, USA

problem #43

Jun 042008


  • 90,000 miles
Since I purchased my 2002 landrover Freelander in Aug of 2007 with 63456 miles on it, I have taken it in for numerous costly repairs. The first being 12 days after the purchase in attempt to fix what I thought was causing the disappearance of my coolant, the cracked coolant reservoir was replaced, only to find out to the engine would continually overheat and I would become stranded on the road on at least 3 occasions even after I had taken it in by this point and had it suction tested to see if a leak could be located with in the coolant system and was told it passed. So I continued to operate the vehicle shuttling myself to and from school and work, stocking my vehicle with necessary coolant to maintain the proper level. After a traumatic incident on the freeway in I June 2008, where I was forced to quickly pull to the shoulder going form 60 to zero while still in traffic, I took the car in to have it serviced again where I soon found out the coolant contaminated the oil because of the seal slipping (through research of my own I have learned the material the seal is made of is in adequate to hold high temperatures for even a reasonable life of the car). Unable to afford the costly replacement of the engine which was advised at this time, 6/08 (over the worth of the vehicle at $7,579 + taxes new and with multiple research attempts done to find a used one with no success because it's such a common problem with these models) I bought some time with an engine flush only to have the internal damage the seal failure had caused result in the complete seizure of my engine as of 1/09. I have been put in harms way in near misses of causing an accident as I uncontrollably come to a stop and soon after sit helplessly on the side of the road through no fault of my own, countless times do to the manufactures negligence for the safety of the operator. Even after this whole ordeal, I still find myself fortunate to only be out a costly vehicle and not the loss of my life.

- Everett, WA, USA

problem #42

Jun 022009

Freelander 6-cyl

  • 83,000 miles


Bought the car used 2002 Freelander Land Rover V6 and drove it. Day four heard a loose bolt sound, it went away. Later that day driving home with children in the car, it died on the freeway, no warning lights, no warning at all, just died. Turns out the timing belt broke and broke the valves and now they want to replace the entire engine. I paid 4K for the car and it will cost 6K to repair. This car is dangerous. We had to move over 3 highway lanes with no power and sit on the side of the road for 1.5 hours to be towed. I had my children in the car with me, this was very very scary!

- Chicago Park, CA, USA

problem #41

Mar 202009


  • miles
Many Land Rover Freelanders are having serious problems due to the faulty construction of the engine. Prior to complete engine failure, there may be unexplained coolant loss, overheating, and other problems related to head gasket failure. Because the cylinder liners are steel and the block is alloy, the cylinder liners tend to work their way into the block. When this happens, there is no way to repair the vehicle short of engine replacement, and many of the replacement engines have the same construction defect as the original vehicle.

- St. Petersburg, FL, USA

problem #40

Mar 032009


  • 50,000 miles
I have a 2002 Freelander bought new 50000 miles later new engine 4000 miles later new transmission 45000 miles needs another engine through in a window problem to. According to the dealership I was told that there is a design flaw in the engine and the company that makes the engine is no longer in business and Land Rover wont help because the second engine only had a 1 year warranty. Land Rover needs to standby their product especially when they knew there were problems with this engine what can be done.

- Desmoines, IA, USA

problem #39

Feb 222009


  • 62,000 miles
I have had my 2002 Land Rover Freelander maintained meticulously... but the engine kept over heating and I had disappearing coolant. Now I am in need of a 3rd engine and I only have 62,000 miles on my car. Since my vehicle is out of warranty a new engine will cost me $10,000. Land Rover said they would pay half of a new engine. But admit they put a faulty engine in 2 years ago when I received my 2nd engine.

- Grandville, MI, USA

problem #38

Sep 222005


  • 65,000 miles
I bought a 2002 Land Rover Freelander as a 2nd owner of the vehicle from a local car dealership. Since the purchase of the vehicle, I replaced a sunroof, a transmission, the brakes require constant replacement (more often than should be necessary), a passenger door window motor and the engine has been replaced once and now has blown again - I am unable to have this engine replaced #1 there are no more engines as the landrover dealer only made this defective model 1 year and there have been so many engines replaced by other owners that there are no other engines available. Even if there were any engines I would not pay $10,000 to have another "defective" engine placed in this vehicle. There are over 1400 messages on the edmond outlining other peoples similar complaints. This defective vehicle has caused countless people's credit to be ruined, and financial hardship to untold families. I wonder why nothing has been done already with all the complaints that have been filed. Landrover needs to reimburse these owners the money they have spent - such as myself on repairs, constantly in the shop and having to pay for rental vehicles. The local dealer was rude and had absolutely no sympathy and actually told me after bringing my vehicle in to them over and over that "he will be glad when my husband and I get out from under this vehicle" and admitted that this vehicle had been a problem for them. But... the dealer wouldn't even offer us a free oil change for all of our hardships. It is a shame. I hope eventually something is done before this company "bellies up" and files bankruptcy and all of these families that have been ruined will have no recourse for their financial woes as a result of this horrible situation. Please help any way you can!

- Soddy Daisy, TN, USA

problem #37

Dec 102008


  • 75,000 miles
My car was overheating, had $1200 worth of repairs; now they are telling me it needs a new engine for $9000. Through the internet I have learned how many complaints there are with the 2002 Land Rover Freelander - basically, after 70,000 miles it needs a new engine, this will be followed with a new transmission. My car has 75,000 miles and is sitting at the dealer, Land Rover "volunteered" to pay 20-percent; the Land Rover dealer "volunteered" to pay 20-percent...leaving me with 60-percent. They are aware of the problem - and will not do the right thing.

- Berkley, MI, USA

problem #36

Jan 022003


  • 10,000 miles
Many problems. 1st. Thermostat failure before 200 mile mark. Replaced. Coolant leaks. Heater replaced, leaking coolant. Engine sound like a diesel truck, never told what it was. Sunroof broke 3 times. Transmission replaced twice. Steering column was not bolted correctly, steering wheel always off center. Coolant still leaks...

- Evanston, IL, USA

problem #35

Jul 292008


  • miles
My 2002 landrover Freelander has spent more time in the mechanic shop than it has spent in my driveway! before the warranty expired, I took it into the encino dealership several times with the same problem. The last time I had it towed there, the car had just dumped all of its fluids onto the floor and was smoking again. This keeps happening over and over and over. Dealership said they checked and the car was fine. Warranty expired and problem continued to occur. Took it to another mechanic and was told there is a major problem with the transmission -- must be replaced. Also having problems with the coolant leaking--have tried to fix the issue several times--still have same problem. Mechanic discovered a crack in the engine. If this is starting to sound familiar it is because there are several different forums online with 2002 Freelander owners all saying the same thing! what is being done about this"?"!!!! the repairs were extremely costly for me as a college student and now as a mother of a newborn I am terrified to drive the car for fear of something serious happening! I have even been told by mechanics and even the service manager at the pasadena landrover dealership that landrover is aware of the problems and warned me it is a lemon! I have been calling landrover's corporate offices for weeks and am still waiting for some kind of answer...

- Burbank, CA, USA

problem #34

Nov 122008


  • 70,000 miles
Bought a 2002 Land Rover Freelander used a little over a year ago with under 55,000 miles. Just got it back yesterday from the shop with an estimated repair cost of over $10000 and that is just in parts not labor. Did some research on the vehicle and come to find out others have had the same problems with less mileage on there vehicles and there have been absolutely no recalls on this vehicle that include any of these problems. The worst of which being the engine leaking antifreeze into the oil. This could cause the motor to overheat and seize and lock up. Who knows what kind of damage or what kind of accident this could have caused if this had happened to the vehicle when my wife was driving to work. We lucked out and discovered the problems before my wife, myself or anyone else got hurt. There are major problems with these vehicles and landrover should be held responsible.

- Milton, VT, USA

problem #33

Oct 312008


  • miles
The 2002 Land Rover Freelander has been nothing but trouble since I purchased it in 2005. It has always had problems with overheating, when I talked to the dealership about it, they told me the Freelander burnt through coolant faster than most cars. I did not think it was normal for it to burn through a gallon of coolant every 3-4 weeks. This has continued since then. Until now, my Freelander"S timing belt broke ( at 60,800) well before recommended changing of the belt and has essentially totaled my car. Since it will cost me a minimum of $4,500 to fix it. (up to $8,500). The car is only worth $8,000.

- Okc, OK, USA

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