Some images from the Rover P10 programme, that would eventually sire the Rover SD1…
Rover P10 concept design
The Rover P10 and Triumph Puma were rival projects to build British Leyland’s 1970s replacement for the Rover P6 and Triumph 2000/2500. These images show what Rover’s thinking was – a large, sleek five-door hatchback that was as intended to be as progressive as the P6 had been at its launch in 1963.
In the run-up to the Canley versus Solihull shoot-out, David Bache’s team pressed ahead with a series of five-door designs for the P10. These came down to three basic shapes, this being the first.
P10: First Proposal
This version was blessed with a rather formulaic 1970s front-end style – big, rectangular headlamps and a high bonnet line linking it well with the Harris Mann-penned Princess, being designed at the same time in Longbridge. The angular roofline and rather low bootline resulted in a rather unhappy mix of ideas.
The clamshell side doors were a nice touch though, not being adopted by the industry as a whole until well into the 1980s. Note the louvres in the rear side window of the model in the right, rear picture. It is interesting to note that in the middle photograph, pictures of a Citroën SM and the Pininfarina Modulo can be seen in the background.
This was rejected in favour of a more progressive design that would ultimately become the definitive Rover P10.
Variations on a theme
Additional images supplied by Etienne van der Linden.