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Service time for the trusty Ford Focus and the courtesy car that I was given was a Rover 25 1·4 ie so I thought why not give the car the once over and then write an opinion for the Ciao readers.
The Rover 25 1·4 ie 16V looks nice but looks can be deceiving and the interior does not live up to the promise of the exterior. The inside is basic, but it is a basic model so I shouldn't expect too much, you get remote central locking, a cassette/radio, drivers airbag and a sunroof for your £8K+ (prices vary between dealers and this was the price I noted at the time).
The handling is excellent and Rover has carried the good handling tradition of the Rover 200 through to the Rover 25 models. However the power steering is slightly on the heavy side and therefore the handling was not as good as my Ford Focus.
The 16 valve injection develops 84 bhp in this economy model which gives the car a very good pick-up for a car with only a 1400 cc engine. Because the car is an economy model it delivers good fuel consumption figures of 35 - 40 mpg in all conditions. This economy model produced precious little in the way of road noise - even at 70 mph.
There was only an airbag on the drivers side in this model and in the interests of safety you would have thought the introduction of a passenger airbag would not have broken the bank.
As previously mentioned the price new for this car is approximately £8,500, however I noted that on the forecourt there were second hand models. The prices of these cars, that varied from 1 to 2 years old, was up to £2,000 cheaper. Now it doesn't need a rocket scientist with a calculator to work out that is one massive pile of pound notes depreciating into dust.
I would therefore recommend that if you do wish to purchase a Rover 25 don't buy a brand new model, let someone else take the hit on the depreciation and save yourself £2K.
If it is economy you really want then the Rover 25 1·4 ie is a good choice, however if you prefer a few refinements go for the 1·6 which has a higher spec level including CD player and electric windows.
Good car as the Rover 25 is it still needs a few more refinements especially on its interior specification, so I will still be sticking with the Focus unless any Ciao readers have news of a better mid-range car.
The lower spec model is the i. The iL contains electric everything and has a nicer interior. I do agree that the 1.6 models are far nicer, but being a poor student I will have to wait some years to do that. Some small touches can make it look nice. :)
TheChocolateLady 09.02.2003 13:53
Although you give us good information in a clear and easily understandable manner (with an excellent writing style, I may add), I can't give you VH since what's missing is the information you cannot give us - how it wears with time (service costs, what goes wrong first, what never goes wrong, etc.). This is the problem with reviewing a car that you or someone in your family doesn't own. Sorry.