New cars -- Rover 200/400 Diesels

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Looking to the Future

As red wine is to fish, British Rail is to timekeeping, Stanstead Airport is to mainstream aviation and the Scud is to precision bombing, so diesel-powered cars are to Motor Sport. They are not natural bedfellows, and yet if the pundits we have been talking to recently are correct in their assessment of motoring in the next ten years, then we had better change our ways.

It was more of a duty than a wish for further enlightment that we attended Rover’s launch of its diesel-powered 200 and 400 series, and it was also a chance to patch up relations with our national manufacturer after years of non-communication between them and us and their refusal to invite Motor Sport to drive their new models.

Two reasons to go then, but hardly a mouthwatering prospect.

There are four versions in this model range — the 218SD, the 218SLD, the 418SLD and the 418GSD, the latter three powered by the same 1.8-litre turbocharged engine and the former by a normally aspirated 1.9-litre unit. The surprise is, however, that these powerplants are not Rover’s own, but are Peugeot’s, the French company having a reputation for refinement and performance for such engines. The decision to use them was also made with an eye to the export market where a Rover product powered by a familiar-to-many Peugeot unit would be an attractive proposition.

Not being acquainted with either the five-door and three-door 200 range and the four-door 400 range, we were very impressed by the interior of every model driven. The top of the range 418GSD displayed touches of oppulence, such as walnut inserts and more comfortable surroundings than usually associated with the more utilitarian image of the diesel. In every case, the environment for driver and passenger was light and welcoming, in stark contrast to many medium sector offerings.

What of the diesel engines? It is difficult to judge since our only experience was that of a fairly basic Ford Escort diesel, but since it is Rover’s contention that their new models will make conquest sales from the petrol-engined variety, perhaps our lack of experience was not altogether a bad thing and more representative of the customer they hope to win over.

Whether it was the 418GSD or the 218SD, there was no escaping the fact that we were being propelled along by a diesel-engined machine, especially on tickover, but once on the move, that feeling was more or less dispelled. While the turbocharged versions had a little more performance than the normally aspirated one, none could be described as being over-endowed in this area, but that really is beside the point.

What we did notice, however, since our last ride in a Rover, is just how much better the build quality is nowadays. Unfortunately we were never in a car long enough to have a really good poke around underneath and inspect everything closely, but first impressions were nevertheless good; the doors closed with a satisfying click and nothing rattled or creaked within the passenger compartment.

Prices start at just under £11,000 for the 218SD, £12,950 for the 218SLD Turbo, £13,175 for the 418SLD Turbo and a highish £14,500 for the 418GSD Turbo. We have no doubt that these diesel-powered variants are keeping the company on the right track, one leading to a brighter future. — WPK

You may also like

Related products