Advantages Fuel economy, performance, equipment
Disadvantages Image, dated and cramped cabin
For the money this car is unbelievable value - £700 buys you a very decent, reliable, economical, well-equipped car. With a Rover badge. This might put a lot of people off, but the 1994cc Rover L-series diesel engine was so highly-regarded that even Honda used it in European versions of their Accord and Civic.Speaking of the engine, it's a powerful (105bhp/153lb-ft in intercooled form) but pretty gruff unit, though it has some technical advantages over its competition - namely direct fuel injection which gives superior economy to the Peugeot XUD engine for example, with 53MPG combined for the Rover and I've never managed less than 40MPG despite a leaden right foot. It even runs happily on vegetable oil... It's suprisingly quick too, I was keeping up with six-cylinder Mercedes and BMW diesels on the motorways. The non-intercooled SD versions of this engine seem somewhat pointless as a used buy though - only 88bhp and less economical.
The Rover 400-series is basically a Honda Civic, at least in hatchback form. The saloon which I have is unique to Rover (the later Rover 75 by the same designer takes the same cues) and much better-looking if less practical, and the engine and transmission are by Rover. So it's a bit British...The dashboard, taken from the Honda Civic, is pretty nasty and dated with switches scattered all over and covered in ugly grey plastic. The only concession to luxury is the unlovely plastic fake wood panels in the door panels and dash.
Interior space is compromised, especially in the back. Nobody over 6' will be comfortable in there. I'm 6' 3" and the front is a bit of a squeeze - headroom is okay without a sunroof, but the legroom is rubbish.Spec'-wise it's very good for the age, with electric windows all round, electric mirrors, air-conditioning, remote stereo controls, remote central locking with immobiliser, ABS, driver's airbag, disc brakes all-round, etc.
It's been very reliable despite the fact that I've been treating it like hell, with two fast trips from the Highlands to Manchester in a matter of weeks and 5,500 miles amassed in just over a month - including driving through fields and rivers. The only problem has been a dodgy power cable, which wouldn't allow the starter motor to turn or power the fuel stop solenoid to let the fuel through to the injectors.Handling is predictable and decent enough, but it rolls a lot. I think the dampers may be shot on my car which has nearly 115,000 miles - changing the wheels and tyres helped the handling a lot though, it feels a lot less sloppy with the non-standard 185/55/15 tyres.diesel car...
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Please refer to the vehicle list for all suitable vehicles and any technical restrictions in menu item "product details"!Brand new, ready-to-fit...
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