Thanks for all the contributions for Car of the Month – we’ve now got enough to keep us going until… February! So please, keep ’em coming, or the feature’s return will be somewhat short-lived. Next month’s feature car harks from the BMC era, so this month we’ll drop in a relative modern.
Tongue out of cheek, November’s beauty is Jon Mower’s stunning Rover 827 Si, which is about as original as they come. Over to Jon to tell the story…
When I passed my driving test back in 1989, I was determined to get into a car from BL/ARG. I ‘umm’ed and ‘ahhh’ed, and ended up with a Maestro 1.3L, which was followed a year later by a 1.6 Vanden Plas. Then came my first brand new car, a Mini 35. I was happy. I was buying cars that were made by what I classed as the best car company in the world.
How things have changed, and with hindsight (and sites like AROnline), how my initial thoughts were changed forever.
Two Rover 100s followed, a 220 Tomcat and two MG ZSs, one of which was AROnline’s Car of the Month in August 2004. Then it was all gone, a Jag, a Vauxhall and a MINI Countryman followed (and the less said about the MINI the better), so I decided to get rid of that and go back to my first love. I travelled all the way to Scotland to get him, my MK 1 Rover 827 Si Fastback. I won’t say the sale was a success as things were not as expected or promised, but for 800 quid, and with a boot full of spares (read rubbish, most of which had nothing to do with Rover), I at least had a Rover again.
Since we collected him, Simon, as we call him, has been trouble free, and has garnered a number of lovely comments from the car shows we have attended. There isn’t a panel that does not need something doing to it, but the interior is nearly mint, apart from the wood trim and one oddly coloured rear seatbelt. The comfort, silence and grace as he purrs along can’t be beaten, fuel consumption is a bit heavy, but not bad enough to have a tanker follow me around, the boot again is mint, the spare tyre has never been used and the jack is still in it’s shrink wrap.
The Honda V6 is as sweet as ever with only 41,000 genuine miles on the clock, though you do have to get used to the four speed auto – take it slow to change up and it is as smooth as anything, but if you’re more than generous with the accelerator pedal it does grab the next gear with a bit of a thud. This car is not a car to be driven like a hooligan, though, more of a nice, wafting experience.
Sitting on the drive, he still looks like a special car even after nearly 25 years, the wipers with the double wipe to drop down on the scuttle, the radio that does not like to keep its station, little oddities that bring a smile every time I start the car and drive it away – and are all part of the fun of owning something a little bit different.