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.
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