2000 Rover - Austin 45 Reviews

2000 Rover - Austin 45 Advantage 1.4 from UK and Ireland

Model year2000
Year of manufacture2000
First year of ownership2008
Most recent year of ownership2008
Engine and transmission 1.4 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.5 / 10
Distance when acquired37534 miles
Most recent distance42446 miles
Previous carVauxhall Astra

Summary:

Maybe not the most exciting car on the road but image aside it is a great all rounder

Faults:

In the 6 months we have had it very little. It came fully serviced with a service history from new, the only replacement parts being brake pads and tyres.

My son used it in Cornwall over the summer and had a slow puncture which was fixed and the tracking redone, it feels as if it is pulling slightly to the right but there is no tyre wear.

The drivers seat stuck in the highest position soon after we got it, not ideal for my 6'2" son, it wasn't until his return from Cornwall we were able to remove the seat and cure it from underneath.

Aside from a recent niggle of the SRS light coming on for a day or two then going off it has been pretty much faultless.

General Comments:

I do find the orange glow from the dash a bit disconcerting, keep thinking it's a warning light come on!

Pity the window switch isn't illuminated, it's a pig to find on the door in the dark.

Why couldn't they have put a handle on the boot so you could open it from outside without the key?

For a 1.4 it pulls very well, even better than our Picasso 1.8.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th November, 2008

2000 Rover - Austin 45 Connoisseur 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture2000
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2008
Engine and transmission 1.8 petrol Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.3 / 10
Distance when acquired43000 miles
Most recent distance53000 miles
Previous carRover - Austin 200

Summary:

Without a doubt the best car I've ever owned!

Faults:

Air conditioning has never worked since I got the car (this was a known problem however, and may have been caused during an earlier repair).

One adjustable headlight will not adjust.

Door handle came away from the door just before its last MOT.

The exhaust also fell off just before its last MOT.

The car is very likely to stall when started from cold, and the engine also idles erratically on occasions when cold too.

Rear wheel bearings had to be replaced due to excess heat caused by sticking brakes (which also had to be replaced).

Odd intermittent problem with the ABS working at strange times, i.e. activating when slowing down from a low speed even though road conditions are perfect.

Needed a new fan motor and resistor pack as both had blown.

Rear passenger door will not open from the inside.

Boot lock no longer unlocks with the key (due to a kid who tried, and failed to open it with a screwdriver)

General Comments:

The Rover 45, what can I say about it? If you look at some of the reviews here, you may decide that it's an old mans car, or that it is an unreliable car. Indeed the Rover 45 looks like nothing more than a facelift of the old 400, and reliability can be hit and miss with them. If you look at my list of faults, your view of it being unreliable may even be reinforced. However what you have to remember is that my car is nearly 9 years old, and in my opinion is aging very well.

The styling was outdated when the car was first released in 2000, now it really is showing its age. It looks positively geriatric when compared to a Focus of similar age, and there is no way of hiding it. It's not surprising though as the car is based on the early 90's Honda Domani. Styling isn't everything however, and really I quite like it, more so now as it is becoming an increasingly rare sight on British roads.

Reliability:

So far mine has been quite reliable, and only minor niggly faults have appeared (soon most of them will be cured). My car is now firmly in the danger zone for the well publicised (and quite common) head gasket problem that can affect any (but does not affect all) K series engines. In my experience the car has proved itself to be very reliable, and it starts every morning (well it does now after I got rid of the Rover battery). On a recent trip to London the car was problem free; definitely better than the numerous other (some brand new) cars that I saw broken down on the hard shoulder!

Comfort/Interior:

I have never been in a more comfortable car! I drive from the north of Scotland to the London area several times a year, usually in a car hired by my work. Practically all of them left me with backache for a day or so afterwards. I had no such thing when I took this car with me instead; no sore back, no nothing. This was, of course helped by the large and extremely comfortable seats that have been put into this model. Seat height and steering adjustment also helped me to get my most comfortable driving position.

Rover seemed to have tried their best to make the inside of the car a very pleasant place to be, and it works. They used high quality plastics and swathes of 'walnut' trim to make the interior simply exude quality. That said, the switchgear, whilst well placed, is dated and an area that does let it down slightly.

Driving Experience:

This is where the Rover 45 really shines. The driving experience is at least as good as a similarly aged and equipped Ford Focus. Road holding is excellent and the car has bags of grip. The ride is comfortable on normal roads, but supple enough to provide an almost sporty B road experience. The steering is responsive and weighty though does lack some feel.

Acceleration is quite good for a car in its class (and for one its age), and it can definitely hold it's own against some more modern cars.

The K series engine is excellent, it's not the most refined of engines, but provides the correct balance of power, economy and responsiveness. While it can no longer compare to more modern and efficient engines, for it's age it still compares favourably to similarly aged cars. For me it provides an excellent drive, and I will miss the car if I ever decide to change it!

It really is a shame that Rover went down the pan, because they managed to produce this car on practically no money. I would have loved to have seen what they could have done with its replacement!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th September, 2008

27th Sep 2008, 10:13

With all the problems mentioned, this is the best car you ever owned? I'd have got rid ages ago, especially considering the very low mileage!

12th Dec 2008, 17:34

The problem that you say you have with the cold start is more likely sticky valves.

I had the exact same problem for the last 2 years and only recently solved it by buying Forte Gas treatment. Since my mechanic did the treatment the car works much better and smoother on the cold mornings.

Average review marks: 7.9 / 10, based on 10 reviews