BL50 : Your turn to vote for BLMC’s greatest

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Do you think the Austin Allegro is the greatest BLMC car of them all? If so, vote for it as your favourite, below…
Do you think the Austin Allegro is the greatest BLMC car of them all? If so, vote for it as your favourite, below…

As it’s the 50th Anniversary of the creation of BLMC, we’re running a series of features throughout 2018 that celebrate, reflect and inform about the achievements of British Leyland Motor Corporation. It’s not all one way, of course, and to find out what you think the greatest legacy of the company is, we’re giving you the chance to vote for what you think are the greatest cars produced by the company.

Considering that’s now ancient history in the fast-paced automotive world, it’s amazing to see just how much love – some of it ironic – that there is out there for the products which the company produced between 1968 and 1986 (when the initials BL disappeared and were replaced by the Rover Group).

The cars : Rover SD1 development history

What we’re trying to do is set out a Top 10 list of the greatest vehicles made, developed and designed by BLMC – as voted for by you, the loyal and enthusiastic readers of AROnline. Please vote for your favourite vehicles here, and we’ll see which one wins – after the poll closes on 4 April 2018. We’ll total up these votes, and those from the AROnline Facebook group poll, and declare the winner of 10 April 2018, before counting down your favourites…

Suggestions for errors and omissions are always gratefully received, and the poll is open to all new cars launched by BL between 1968-1986…

How to vote for the greatest BLMC vehicle

Read the list of cars below, hit the ‘Vote’ button at the bottom, and click up to three choices.

What is the best BLMC car of them all?

  • Rover SD1 (18%, 203 Votes)
  • Range Rover (12%, 137 Votes)
  • Austin Metro (10%, 111 Votes)
  • Jaguar XJ6/XJ12 (9%, 99 Votes)
  • Austin Maxi (6%, 68 Votes)
  • Princess (5%, 59 Votes)
  • Triumph Stag (5%, 57 Votes)
  • Triumph Dolomite (4%, 43 Votes)
  • Austin Allegro (4%, 40 Votes)
  • Morris Marina (4%, 39 Votes)
  • Jaguar XJ-S (3%, 36 Votes)
  • Rover 800 (2%, 27 Votes)
  • Austin Maestro (2%, 27 Votes)
  • Leyland National (2%, 26 Votes)
  • Austin Montego (2%, 24 Votes)
  • Triumph TR7 (2%, 23 Votes)
  • Leyland Sherpa (2%, 19 Votes)
  • Rover 213/216 (2%, 19 Votes)
  • Leyland T45 (1%, 14 Votes)
  • Triumph Acclaim (1%, 13 Votes)
  • Leyland P76 (1%, 10 Votes)
  • MGB (1%, 7 Votes)
  • Triumph TR6 (0%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 561


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Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

Latest posts by Keith Adams (see all)


  1. Not sure about the Range Rover and the XJ6. They were pretty much ready for production at the time of the merger, so they didn’t suffer much from BL’s board influence

  2. Agree on XJ6, thuogh not oon RR: that could have gone the way P8/P9 went!
    However, criterium is the BL-era, so form 1968 ’till 1986…

  3. The XJ6 should be XJ6/XJ12?
    To me equal greatest with the Range Rover as both production ready before the merger, yet both outlived BL and underpinned the return of Jaguar and Rover to the private sector.

  4. To me the XJ6 and Range Rover stand out by a mile for their desirability and iconic status, especially the Range Rover. The vast number of Range Rovers still coming out of Solihull (and other plants) today is proof of the excellence of the original

  5. I think there may be a bug in your voting software. It seems to be showing that people have voted for the Marina, which surely can be the case?!

  6. I thought the montego and maestro family emanated post BLMC in fact the metro was in the same family. There was also the triumph 2000 too

  7. Triumph TR6 not on the list? The mechanicals were all there before ’68, but it was a new model with a new body introduced post ’68.

  8. There are two distinct classes of car featuring in this list. The type designed by a previous incarnation of BL (Range Rover, Stag) and those fully designed by BL (Allegro and Marina). Fascinating differences.

  9. Some fascinating things coming out of this
    1/ everyone loves the SD1 (surely on looks and V8 alone)
    2/ A real affection for the Metro (justifiably) not a market leader per say but very good and with real charm.
    3/ the Range rover and XJ6/12 which subjectively should be romping this are a little unloved.
    4/ The maxi another “car that killed the company” is remarkably popular. Better than an Allegro, Marina or Princess. I’d say yes and just shows how lack of development (and four door) cost this sales. Spend a fraction of the money spent on Marina and Allegro updating and producing 4 door variants, shoehorn a 2lt or 2.2lt E6 in there and suddenly you have a Mark 2 cavalier in 1970.

    • Re. the Maxi: could that be because this really is one of the saddest cars to emerge form BL? Very good concept gone very wrong in execution, could have been so much better with properly developed drivetrain and different (almost any other) body…

      • The Maxi seemed to have been unloved by BL management and it looks as if no effort was made to make it sell. I’m not sure it was very wrong in execution. It rode well, was refined and comfortable as well as practical. Handling was miles ahead of most of the competition and it was mostly reliable. (like the 1800). But people wanted a bit more performance (2lt engines) and a bit more 70 jazzy styling and maybe a saloon version. All of which could quite easily be given for relatively little expense.

        • Very few people bought 2 Litre family cars in the late 60s early 70s. The Maxi was just not stylish enough for the late 60s and early 70s, if it was a haircut it would have been a “short back and sides”.

  10. If I were to say the Sherpa, many would scoff, but once upon a time these vans were everywhere plying their trade and keeping this little country and others in business and, you can’t get a piano in the back of any other of our other cherished BLMC products save the T45…

  11. I think it has to be the SD1, for all its flaws. Of course all BL’s cars were flawed!

    Has anyone else noticed that some BL styling id living on in VW/Audi cars? The Q3 looks like an inflated Allegro and there are hints of Princess on the Q2 and T Roc.

  12. I had a Vitesse with a BL badge on. Surely they also produced GT6s. I cannot see Ambassador, which was an overall improvement on the Princess.All were supposed to be improvements on previous models but I rather think pricing became a bit of an issue.

  13. The Maxi was under-valued at the time, and is under-rated now. Unfortunately it’s greatest asset was the thing that hamstrung it. I agree that different body variants would have worked, but a booted version would have been so big, because it used the 1800/2200 doors, which gave it the fantastic accommodation, but would have made a saloon bigger than the Princess!

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