1990 Rover - Austin 200 214 SLi 1.4 petrol from UK and Ireland
Good car, but reliability is a bit suspect
The car had an appetite for batteries - it needed a new one every 18 - 24 months and we could never find out why.
The clutch actuating lever failed.
The distributor rotor arm failed, causing misfiring.
After 6 years, the edges of the driver's seat were threadbare.
My father bought the car new in 1990 for £14,000. I bought it from him in 1993 for £6,000 and ran it until 1998/60,000 miles (fairly normal depreciation for a UK car!)
The 1.4 K series Rover engine was very good - responsive, free revving, and powerful for its size.
This car was one of the early models, and did not have the power steering which is essential on this model, and which became standard on later cars. Other than heavy steering at low speeds, the car was nice to drive and had good fuel economy.
After six years, the only sign of corrosion was the start of rust on the bottom edge of the front wings - the usual place on this vehicle.
I sold the car locally in 1998 for £2000. In 2003 I spotted it in supermarket car park and spoke to the owner. It had changed hands a couple of times, and the last sale price was £200. It now has 80,000 miles on the clock, the rust on the front wings is a little worse, but not too bad, and the clutch is giving a little trouble - not bad for 13 years old.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 21st February, 2003
I saw my old car outside a repair workshop in March 2005 - like seeing an old friend again.
The workshop said the car had been laid up for about a year, but it had "sailed through the MOT test". They were touching up some rust on the rear wheel arches, but overall the car still looked in good condition - not bad for 15 years old and 90,000 miles on the clock.