Rover 75/MG ZT (R40)
The Rover 75 (R40) was developed under BMW’s watch. It did without tight budgetary constraints that the company had become used to while under the ownership of BAe. These engineering values endowed the 75 with almost previously unheard of quality.
However, BMW’s Chairman, Bernd Pischetsrieder, decided to torpedo the car – and the company that produced it. This was at its launch at the NEC in 1998, because of political pressure BMW was under. Sales of the 75 were slow from launch, but the car’s excellence was recognised by all who drove it.
Its fans loved its comfort and tasteful design. The 75 proved a victim of the BMW sell-off, although the resultant development of the MG ZT variant was a high point. Lived on in China as the Roewe 750.
Reviews, blogs and news stories
Updated: The story of the Rover 75’s conception, development, and eventual launch in 1998. And how it was scuppered by events – not least the torpedoing it was given by BMW boss, Bernd Pischetsrieder.
Nanjing Automobile Corporation announced it would start production in March 2007. Except that it never panned out as expected…
The Rover 75 V8 Limousine was the car they weren’t going to build… When the long-wheelbase version of the 75 was unveiled in 2002, the company made it clear that developing a V8-powered rear-wheel-drive version would be costly, and the limited demand wouldn’t justify the investment. Yet, they built one… Ministerial Rover This is the car they […]
The NEC Motorshow in 1998 was a vitally important event for Rover and Jaguar. Both companies launched brand new cars – and, in both cases, they were designed the way they were to re-establish traditional marque values. Both cars were styled to evoke memories of 1950s and ’60s products, but the question remains: which did it better […]
Sporting pretenders? Introduction They might be unfashionable now, but diesel cars have been on a huge adventure in recent years. The time when cars fuelled by the black pump were slow, noisy and smelly have long since passed – even the most affordable secondhand examples can give you a great deal of pleasure if you buy well. […]
The most powerful version of the rear-wheel-drive MG ZT spent a long time in development – and, in the end, it didn’t make it into production, as time ran out for it. Wearing the coveted chassis number one, the ZT XPower 385 is another of those fascinating might-have-beens that never saw the light of day. […]
Updated: The story of the Rover 75-based Roewe 750. It had rather a lot of British input into it. That’s because it was developed by a number of ex-MG Rover engineers in the UK. But it was also based on an ill-fated plan to facelift the Rover 75 in 2006. Shame we never had a chance to buy it in Britain…
Following BMW’s disposal of the Rover Group in 2000, production of the then-new 75 needed moving from Cowley to Longbridge. Here’s the amazing story of how it happened, as recounted by Ian Elliott back in 2000, and produced for the then fledgling MG Rover PR Department. It makes fascinating reading to this day, and shows just how seemingly insurmountable logistical mountains can be climbed.
Craig Cheetham A few months back, our Ebay Find of the Week was a 2000 W-reg Rover 75. Ever since then, I’ve had a nagging desire to go out and rescue a 75 which had sunk to such low levels of residual value and give it a second chance, not least because, according to the DVLA […]
Not a lot of pictures of the R40’s development programme have surfaced; mainly because Richard Woolley’s 1993 design was considered so successful, it didn’t change between the time the clay model was finalised and the launch of the car five years later. However, the interior was subject to a lot of soul searching, and two […]