1998 Rover - Austin 600 SLDi 2.0 turbo diesel from UK and Ireland

Summary:

Highly recommended

Faults:

The driver's side electric window stopped working, and needed a new relay.

No other problems.

General Comments:

The car has been utterly reliable, and is a pleasure to drive.

There is plenty of room inside, and the boot is large enough for all our needs.

The performance is excellent in the 30-60mph range, and the engine is very frugal.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th April, 2011

29th Apr 2011, 11:16

Isn't the Rover 600 based on the Honda Accord? That may be part of the reason as to why it was such a good car.

25th Jun 2011, 13:42

It is based on the Honda Accord, but with a Rover engine.

1998 Rover - Austin 600 2.3 DOHC 14 from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

Reliable, comfortable, powerful (sometimes to its detriment)

Faults:

One of the electric windows stopped working while another works poorly. This seems to be a real Honda problem though, as I used to own an Accord with the same problem. I suspect the window motors may need oiling. Windows require more maintenance if you want to own one of these.

Mostly minor British eccentricities such as dashboard and armrest coming loose. Nothing rattles however. Mostly reflects age of the car.

Electric mirrors don't tuck in properly - one goes full circle while other makes grinding noise.

General Comments:

Very comfortable, hard-wearing leather interior. Beige colour really stands out. Lots of dead cow and fake tree make for real luxury. Bit noisy inside though.

Motor is deceptively powerful. Sounds pretty gutless when idling but has serious torque. Can get wheelspins on gravel - this is an auto! Engine is quite noisy though.

Very good alternative to an Accord. Goes just as well, but you get British luxury and the prestigious Rover marque.

Most annoying thing though is the engine is too grunty for the transmission. Pretty rough gear shifts compared to similar sized cars.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th June, 2009

1998 Rover - Austin 600 ti 2.0 turbo from UK and Ireland

Summary:

An excellent bargain buy (June 2007)

Faults:

Drivers side window fell off the runner a couple of times, needed a new bracket. If this happens to you, goto Honda for the part (the door is the same as the Honda Accord of the same era), the part was half the price at Honda.

All electric windows 'sticky'.

Alternator rewound at 70,000.

A few leaky coolant pipes.

General Comments:

As you can see, nothing major has gone wrong with car during our ownership, and the same appears true under the previous owners looking at the service history.

The engine is good, and the camshaft quiet after a lifetime of fully synthetic oil changes every 6,000 miles. Goes to show how reliable these cars can be when serviced correctly.

It's had a new clutch at 93,000, not bad at all, although it was quite expensive as it's a hydraulic variety.

Performance is excellent even by today's standards, although it does need revving a bit to get the most out of it. Handling is excellent compared to my previous two 420 gsi turbos, the 600 feels a lot safer. I would say by today's standards, the handling is adequate, but nothing to shout about.

I would heartily recommend the purchase of a well maintained non-modified example.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th June, 2007

1998 Rover - Austin 600 620 ti 2.0 petrol turbo from UK and Ireland

Summary:

Manically swift and able, inoffensive looking super-saloon car!

Faults:

I'm struggling a little bit here to be honest, a fog light bulb failed!

Oh, and the front engine mount was worn, but a replacement was sourced for a reasonable cost from MG Rover. This wasn't a sudden fail though, it was something I was aware of when I had the car.

Driver's side window came away from it's runners, this is a 'common Rover fault' (it affects the Accord too), mainly this is instigated by trying to wind down a window in winter when it's iced shut, thus bending the lift arms and encouraging the window out of the channels in subsequent use. Easily remedied if it happens, but ultimately, defrost your windows properly first!

General Comments:

Very comfy car, clutch foot rest is a welcome standard feature!

Nice airy, light cabin, easy to use controls, decent quality plastics and generally screwed together quite well. Rear leg room not too bad unless you're a complete giant, but if your distinctly average like me (5'11"), the rear leg room is OK. Front seats fantastically comfortable and adjustable in just about every direction! decent lumbar support.

Ride is firm, but still supple enough not to rattle your fillings!

Handling is quite good for a car of it's size and stature. Plenty of steering feedback, it's a nicely communicative car to drive.

Performance is more than adequate, it's surprised quite a few drivers out there who assumed they'd leave it for dead! Yes, I know, childish, but you have to use the performance now and then! ;-)

I've heard tyre wear, gearbox, drive-shaft and head gasket failure and premature wear fables told a-plenty, at the end of the day, if you abuse a car, neglect it and generally use it hard, don't complain if it breaks down and costs you dearly to rectify any problems which it develops.

This will happen to any car if the above treatment is applied, so the ti is not fairly criticised 99% of the time. I see a lot of people complain the gearbox crunches into reverse, it has no syncro on reverse, read the manual, it does tell you to dip the clutch and pause before selecting reverse to ensure the gearbox doesn't crunch! (or select a forward gear before reverse).

Standard Rover alarm and immobiliser is quite a sophisticated setup with rolling code and passive arm function as far as I recall.

Despite all the negativity about Rover, I'm still to buy an unreliable one, my current 620ti being no exception to my findings with the breed so far.

Look lots before buying, plenty of used and abused examples out there for too much money. High miles are not a problem, just find one with good service history or at least decent evidence of self service (recorded mileage, date of service, full or interval service, receipts for parts and fluids etc).

Major service costs no worse than for any other medium-large saloon of it's class, though oil changes need to be at 6000 mile intervals and quality lubricant must be used.

Insurance costs not as bad as some would have you believe, current insurance costs for a 28 yr old male living in the Staffordshire area, third party fire and theft £360.

Fuel costs not too bad at all, it will return between 30 to 32 mpg around town, and is capable of doing 39 to 40 mpg on a run, if you're very careful anyway! not bad for a car which weighs 1365kg and has a 2.0 turbo petrol engine!

Tip, if you have just bought one, get it serviced, inlcuding changing the gearbox oil (makes sure the oil is the correct grade for the torsen type 'box fitted to this model), and make sure the coolant is changed and topped up to the correct level with the correct coolant ratio.

Having the brake fluid completely renewed is also a good idea, but this isn't specific to these cars, it just makes good sense whatever car you buy!

In all, a nice, well presented car with very solid performance, looks more expensive than it is, and quite in-expensive to buy!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th October, 2006

3rd Jan 2009, 15:52

Great article and review. It made for a great read. Nice to read something positive about these vehicles. Was 620si owner, now a 600ti for the last 3 years. Just love Rovers.

Thanks c.b.g.