IN line with their “product-led recovery” programme, BL announced a Vanden Plas version of their Metro at the end of last month aimed at those who want luxury with economy. Powered by the 1.3-litre engine as fitted to the HLS, the little Vanden Flat is fully and comfortably equipped with woven velvet covered upholstery, cut-pile carpet throughout, walnut cappings to the doors, colour keyed dash and seat belts and smart exterior trim befitting the top of the range. Driving the car in the Scottish Borders before the announcement date revealed it as a pleasantly quiet car at typical gentlemanly country driving speeds, but somewhat buzzy at the legal limit; above this speed, the resonance, particularly on the overrun, is aggravating. Features such as a sun-roof, stereo radio / cassette player and bronze tinted glass are standard equipment.
While sampling the VdP Metro, we had the chance to try another Metro variant which will be of much greater appeal to MOTOR SPORT readers, having much of the driving charm of the Cooper S Mini. Excellent performance is coupled with extremely comfortable seating, a remarkably smooth and quiet engine, slick gearchange and taut handling. Unfortunately, a press embargo date of May 5th prevents us saying more about this splendid newcomer to the Metro range other than that it heralds the return of a famous motoring name.
At the time of writing, no price details were available.