I feel I cannot let Mr. Marchant’s judgement of the Rover 2000 pass unchallenged in your correspondence columns. I have had one of these cars since July 1965, since when it has done 12,000 miles, being run jointly with a Rover 100 model. In this time the 2000 has done one 4,000-mile Continental holiday (with five up) and innumerable “fast and furious” trips across the English and Welsh countrysides. Trouble has been experienced, which I will mention later, but the car has provided unprecedentedly enjoyable motoring since it was purchased. Incredible standards of comfort for money have been set by this car, and I feel I cannot extol the road-holding capability of it at the lengths it deserves, in your columns.
Shod with SP41s (just about on the way out after 12,000 miles), it has been a car which engendered very considerable confidence in its handling right from the start, and constantly inspires in one enormous faith in Rover’s design and engineering.
Like the Porsche 911 which D.S.J. reported on last month, the Rover gives you the impression that it is quite definitely with you through thick and thin and always retains its dignity, never doing anything untoward. To condemn the car, and indeed the whole of the British Motor Industry, for the failings Mr. Marchant has experienced is. I think, a little unfair. Rovers have suffered an unfortunate number of labour problems since the introduction of this new car, which must inevitably reflect to some extent in the assembly. Let it be noted that most of the faults mentioned by Mr. Marchant and those faults experienced by myself have been those which might arise in assembly rather than being basic design faults. They are the sort of faults which are rapidly resolved in production lines.
My car has just been returned to me by Rovers after having been dealt with both promptly and courteously. The following work was carried out by the factory, under warranty : New gearbox fitted, faulty dipping stalk replaced, squeaks eliminated, a rear quarter-light replaced, an upholstering fault rectified. Nonetheless, I consider the pleasure which I have derived from driving this excellent motor car to far outweigh the minor inconvenience which these faults have caused.
The Rover company has shown with its P4 design that a reasonable production run results in their producing a thoroughly reliable, well-designed, solid car capable of standing up to great punishment.
If pressed, I would admit to the criticism that the 2000 lacks power. Compared with something like a Ford Zodiac (only because it weighs the same), the car performs extremely cornpetitively in spite of its having 20 b.h.p. less, 575 c.c. less,. and 26 lb. ft. less. Daily, it takes me from Wallasey to Chester (a distance of some 22 miles) in a comfortable 24 minutes, a time which I am unable to better in a much more potent piece of machinery due to its suspension limitations.
To summarise, I think the Rover Company has produced an extremely comfortable car with superb handling and reasonable power at the price. With its current emphasis on handling rather than out and out power, I think many would agree that the British Motor Industry is headed in the right direction, on at least as firm a foundation as the Motor Industry in any other country of the World.
Wallasey. J. Moore.