1994 Rover - Austin 200 218D 1.9 XUD9 diesel from UK and Ireland


Reliable, economical and for banger money


Mostly not the car's fault, but the previous owners have neglected the car - examples below.

Holey radiator cut out of the cooling system (at least it's winter!)

Both CV boots were ripped to shreds.

Driver's seat recliner is broken - it doesn't adjust upright enough so you end up looking like some chav or ned cruising the high street.

Battery light occasionally flashes at start-up, but doesn't seem to affect anything.

General Comments:

This beast cost me £100 so I wasn't expecting much - but all in all, it isn't such a bad car...

The Peugeot-sourced XUD9 (non-turbo :( ) diesel engine still pulls well and has never faltered. Always starts first time. Performance is just about adequate, and 90MPH isn't too much of a struggle on the motorway. I've seen 16.9secs quoted as the 0-60MPH time, but in all honesty it doesn't feel that slow. High-40s MPG is normal, and I'm sure if I took the lead out my right foot, it'd reach the 50s. It's a shame Rover never got round to fitting their own diesel units to these cars though, as they're far superior. Like the Rover units though, this one will run on vegetable oil unmodified. :)

Interior accommodation is good, with plenty of space in the front compartment. The boot is very capacious, and with the seats folded down, you can create a flat loading area. Most recent use - hauling sticks out of the woods.

Despite this being a base model, it still feels a little classy inside, shame it has literally NO specification - keep-fit windows, keep-fit steering, etc - at least it has central locking. It isn't too noisy once up to speed, but when accelerating it sounds like an old 2.25 diesel Land Rover (whiny transmission, parpy exhaust note, etc.)

Surprisingly the old beast still handles, stops and steers well for such a neglected high-miler - thank the rock-solid Honda underpinnings for that. It also has such good ground clearance you can take it off-roading - not that I'd recommend it, other than for a 200 as shabby as mine.

Street-cred is non-existent - it's a white and grey 11-year old Rover! I like the styling though (maybe I'm turning into an old man), the "floating" roof is a particular highlight.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th February, 2006

1994 Rover - Austin 200 216 SLi 1.6 from UK and Ireland


A very reliable and fairly cheap to run solid car!


Front brake calipers seized up around 55,000 miles, cost approx £300.

Head gasket blew around 68,000 miles, cost approx £475.

Otherwise zero major problems, still original clutch, gearbox, radiator, engine etc. Just serviceable items have been replaced, i.e. brake pads & tyres.

Burns about a litre of oil every 1,000 miles.

Rust started appearing on r/h front wheel arch.

General Comments:

I've had the car 7 and a half years and it was 4 years old when I bought it. Mileage now is 128,000 so I've done 94,000 in that time.

Car is very reliable, always starts first time.

Car handles fine, engine has enough power for overtaking.

It's comfy and has a good driving position.

I'll shortly be upgrading to hopefully my first ever brand new car, probably a Mitsubishi Colt 1.5 diesel. I've been very pleased with the 216, it's given me excellent service since '98!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 11th January, 2006

11th Jan 2006, 10:59

You may want to look at the new Kia Rio CRDi as well-I drove one at the weekend and was very impressed-they get a better write up than the Colt in the motor press, are 2k cheaper, the same size, nearly as quick and more economical!

12th Jan 2006, 08:31

Thanks for that about the Rio, I had heard the diesel was the same price as the petrol engine.

I'll try and check it out.


23rd Jan 2006, 08:55

Why would this guy want to look at an MG ZS 180 when he's looking at small brand new diesels?

The New Rio has front and rear electric windows by the way!