What’s the story?
Discovery 1s rust. It’s sad, but it’s true. Their lives as versatile workhorses nearly always come to a dismal conclusion with that unmistakeable crunch of screwdriver through crumbling steel, a few muttered expletives – and an MoT fail certificate.
Not this one, though. Its owner Dale Thompson had a few ideas up his sleeve; ideas that would give a crusty old Disco a new lease of life, as well as preserve it for deployment on the sands of the Cornish coast he calls home.
Everything above the chassis from the B-pillar back on this Disco is new, replaced with a home-made body frame and corrosion-proof glassfibre body panels from Somerset company Longranger 4x4. Even more intriguing – and heartening – is Dale’s low-cost, DIY method of attack.
Our favourite bit?
It’s a gorgeous morning on Marazion beach, just around the corner from Penzance, so Dale takes us on to the sand in front of St Michael’s Mount to show us his truck in action. There isn’t a byway here, but Dale has special permission for launching his 16ft, 55mph Phantom powerboat. The crowds are gathering, and Dale’s Disco is catching admiring glances.
And the verdict from LRO writer Theo Ford-Sagers?
If you ask me, Discovery body conversions often don’t work visually, but I really like what Dale has done with this kit. It’s creative, purposeful and practical without ruining the vehicle’s original lines. Nice one
● Model: 1997 Discovery 1
● Engine: 300Tdi
● Body: Longranger cab roof, back and rear sides, MM 4x4Range Rover tailgate, bespoke internal frame
● Transmission: Standard R380 five-speed manual gearbox and LT230 transfer box
● Suspension: Britpart heavy-duty springs and Supergaz dampers
● Wheels and tyres: 33x12.5 R15 GR Radial Adventuro mud-terrains on steel rims