2002 Rover - Austin 45 iXS 1.6 petrol 16v DOHC from UK and Ireland


More than just a rebadged Honda. Buy one


Rear wheel bearing noisy at 74k. A common problem, but literally a 10 minute job to replace the bearing.

A/C not cold, but probably wants re-gassing. Not a fault of the car.

Chrome bumper trims become loose due to poor fixings.

General Comments:

I only acquired this one owner, low mileage, FSH car, because it was stupidly cheap. Previously Rovers were something that happened to other people.

However, I have grown to really like it. Now that the company is no more, these cars are practically worthless, which means you can get a very good one - and these were popular with older, careful drivers - for very little.

On paper the 0-60 does not look anything special at 10.7 seconds, but the mid range pickup is very good indeed. Get the engine on cam over 3000 RPM and it really does shift. 1.1 BHP per cubic inch is still a very good standard to set.

If you drive with economy in mind, there is ample torque lower down in the rev range to just pootle along, when the car can happily return well over 40 MPG.

It's quite well equipped; the iXS model I believe was at the lower end of the range, but still has remote locking, power steering, A/C, front electric windows, 15" alloys etc.

The cabin is a comfortable place to sit. The 45 benefited from the same seats as the more upmarket 75, and long journeys are no chore.

Handling is not bad at all. The car feels well planted and grips well.

Some of the fittings let the side down; the dash plastic looks a bit brittle and hard, the chrome strips on the front bumper have poorly designed clips, but on the whole, you could do a lot worse for the money.

It does feel slightly dated, originating from the early '90s as it does, compared to contemporary Focus and Astra models, but these are not without their faults either, and you'll pay a lot more for one in an equivalent condition.

Just be wary - the K series engine here has a well documented problem with premature head gasket failure, mainly due to sub-standard original equipment, so it is vital to look after the cooling system.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st October, 2012

2002 Rover - Austin 45 il 1.6 from UK and Ireland


Buy one, I recommend it


Blowers on 1+2 stopped working (solved by replacing resistor inside the glove box).

Original Rover double skinned exhaust started to rust.

Bumper fixings are rubbish.

K series engine coolant water jackets are too small, and water needs checking on regularly (never happened to me).

Nothing else.

General Comments:

I bought this car with very low mileage. Rovers aren't really worth anything anymore.

If they are looked after, they will go on forever.

Full service history is a must.

Very high insurance for a 1.6.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th November, 2010

2002 Rover - Austin 45 Club 2.0 110bhp from UK and Ireland




Rattle in interior - took it to the dealer, and it turned out that they had forgot to screw the dashboard in place.

A/C makes funny noises in hot weather, dealer said it would have to go back to the factory - fat chance of that now!

General Comments:

The engine is nippy and has plenty of grunt. The 110bhp unit overtakes effortlessly on the motorway, and copes well doing 2mph on the marlebone road, even if a little noisy.

The cabin is made with good quality plastics, but in some places shoddily put together. The standard oak effect dash is a nice touch, but in truth the whole interior is a little dated. The heated seats warm your bum on a cold morning, and that's just as well because the A/C takes ages to warm up.

The exterior stands out from the crowd. The chrome trim, 15" alloys and twin headlights give it the Jag look, and compared to the focus/astra euroboxes it is an individual choice.

It seats 5 adults comfortably, and has Vectra spaciousness in the cabin and boot, even the 5 door (I have the 4 door).

This car is a company car, which is why I got it. Unless buying second hand, don't pay out of your own pocket for it because things are bound to go wrong more than in an Astra/Focus, and will depreciate drastically now that Rover has gone bust. Don't forget that this car was originally to contend with the 3 series, so you get 3 series equipment (such as heated seats) for focus money. Buy if you want to stand out form the euro-box crowd.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th October, 2005

29th Dec 2005, 00:17

Two notes:

The cabins on these are very cramped - you were lucky to get five normal-sized people in there!

Their (400/45) reliability record is very good, certainly better than the equivalent Vauxhall or Ford and they seem to wear their age much better. It's just trendy to belittle Rovers for their reliability - in reality it's no worse than any other European mainstream car maker.

2002 Rover - Austin 45 SLi 1.6 from UK and Ireland


Underrated and Undervalued


The warning light for the boot being open kept coming on while driving when the boot was locked shut.

General Comments:

I had this car for the total of one month as a hire car while my Ford Ka was in having the engine rebuilt.

I can honestly say that I was not impressed at all when I saw I was getting a Rover 45 but I was very pleasantly surprised.

Very very quick, excellent handling with communicative steering.

The Rover 45 has good ride quality and a big boot.

On the downside, rear visibility is very very poor and its hard to park.

The clutch on the car I had was dreadful and very juddery.

Finally, the indicator switches felt like they were going to come off in my hand.

However, I would recommend this car, its good looking, fast, with lots of space (in the front). Highly recommended.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th January, 2003

9th Nov 2005, 19:43

Try mg 180 version. 2.5l. feels totally different.