I'm between one of these and a Jeep Grand Cherokee at the minute.
Can anyone who has owned one tell me what they're like to live with as a daily? I had a 300 TDI a few years ago, was a noisy, rackety thing but I loved it.
Are the V8's more refined? Also what options should I be after (cruise control, leather, etc?).
Depends what you are looking at really.
A 3.9 is a D1. These are good robust vehicles, but won't be hugely different to your 300Tdi. It's the same vehicle bar engine and gearbox.
They can suffer rust, but despite common believe it isn't usually terminal and is all fixable.
A 4.0 will be a D2 and the lower end of your budget. These are more refined than a D1, but not hugely so. They are quite a similar vehicle underneath.
The biggest difference is ACE (active cornering enhancement) and air rear suspension and improved NVH.
If you want refinement then a p38a Range Rover would probably top the LR offerings for this money, just make sure you know what you are getting into.
In the Jeep world you've got the Cherokee (XJ). The 4.0 is more peppy and powerful than the RV8 and combined with the Jeeps lower curb weight it's quite a bit more lively and better on fuel. Refinement is About equal to a Disco V8.
A Grand Cherokee is a class size above the Cherokee, although arguably still more compact and less spacious than a Disco.
Jeeps are often very well specced though, so offer very good bang for buck. But parts are less available and Jeep UK are sadly dire.
The Grand Cherokee is available with the same 4.0 S6 as the Cherokee and will still likely out perform an RV8 LR. You can also get the GC with a 5.2 or 5.9 V8. Fairly robust, although a few issues are known. These easily out perform the LRs.
If you can find one of the latter 4.7 V8's then they are really quite rapid.