eBay Find of the Week : Rover 2300

Keith Adams

Rover 2300 in original condition up for grabs, courtesy of 'The Doctor'
Rover 2300 in original condition up for grabs, courtesy of 'The Doctor'

Our friend, the eBay seller known as ‘The Doctor’, has this unerring habit of finding some of the cleanest, tidiest, lowest-mileage BL and Austin Rover-era cars known to man. And this Rover 2300, one of the last of the line, is a great example of just that sort of car…

The Doctor is an ex-BL man and knows his stuff – so when a car like this comes up for sale with him, everyone takes notice. It’s a one-owner 2300, built in mid-1986,  fitted with many extras, and on its original Targa Red paint, and looks to have a reserve somewhere north of £3000. And with four days left to run, bidding is already heading in that direction.

Once again, it’s good to see a nice SD1 in original – and amazing – condition heading for a good price. Maybe, just maybe SD1s are finally heading out of the values gutter.

The original eBay link here.


Keith Adams


  1. Admittedly I have always lusted after a late SD1 Vitesse twin-plenum or even a 3500 Vanden Plas EFi. However, this example makes an interesting case on why loosing two cylinders, 1200ccs and a higher level of specification is not that big a sacrifice.

    A very nice example with such a fantastic finish to the usually fade-prone Targa Red colour.

  2. That’s such a good looking car.

    Still fresh, modern and a real antidote to all those samey silver German cars running around these days.

    Maybe if Rover had continued down the SD1 route with avant-garde styling and rear wheel drive they might still be with us.

  3. fantastic – the lady in red. brings back memories of seeing a Red Rover Vitesse(827FB but you get similar lines) on the car lot of rover of greenlane (auckalnd) many years ago. I wanted one ever since:-) alex

  4. Great looking car, where does he get them from!,very good condition,mind you I always fancied a 3500 VPlas efi, but I know whilst working for the Met Police, they bought up all remaining stock from ARG, and we had number of E reg 3500 V-Plas EFi for Traffic and Area cars. I remember that the public raised concerns about having top of the range cars as poilce vechicles.All the Met workshops were tasked in removing the Vanden Plas badge!. Great feature, well done,

  5. Looks stunning in Ferrari red.

    Glad to see that prices for SD1s are reflecting the car finally climbing out of ‘Banger Valley’.

  6. You’re still thinking about selling? You’ll feel differently when you’ve seen the car again, I’m sure!

  7. A lovely car. Do my eyes deceive me or was the 2300 model only ever fitted with one gas strut to keep the tailgate open?

  8. Nice looking car in great spec and that 2300 is still a useful engine (I think). The text reads it was built mid 86 but as it has E reg plates I guess it was registered post August 1987.

  9. It’s been mentioned before about the Met buying all the remaining 3500’s, some not being registered until after 8/1987.

    I didn’t realise there were any private sales that late, I guess this was stuck in a dealers as an end of line special.

    One of the last base level Cortina Mk5’s came up for sale on ebay a couple of weeks ago.

    The fleet section here mentions that the Royal Mail didn’t register some vans for a time after purchase, this seems like a common practise, the ex-MOD Montegeo’s come to mind.

  10. A nice car and nice spec, and nice money because it’s a nice car. I will be asking close to £3000 for the vermillion red Princess 2 2200HLS I am restoring at the moment. I see no reason why it won’t fetch that sort of money judging by the prices in the classifieds for many other classics.

    With so much tat around selling for low prices it makes it harder to justify high prices for a nice one, but those who are looking for such a car won’t be disappointed.

  11. It looks stunning! It’s a real time-capsule this car, and only 55,000 miles. The color is also very fitting for a SD1.
    Love it!

  12. Stunning – what a find.
    Just looking at that interior reminds me of how good these were in their day – Big comfy velour seats, lovely wide centre console, wood trim, Ahhhh! What a shame 25 years on all we can get as an equivalent is a BMW or a selection of various VW/Audi/Skodas – good as they are, but where is the soul….?

  13. Lovely example. I didn’t realise they carried on building the 2300 that late. Oddly enough a lovely late Vitesse passed in me Kidderminster this evening

  14. Just a snapshot of the countrys preoccupation with fame rather than SD1 values I feel. Your buying a piece of the fabled ” Doctor” to staple onto your sandwich board of brass plaques at car shows, rather than a sadly missing respect for the value of the BL wonder-hatch. I speak as a SD1 owner to a few months ago too.

    I am wrong?

  15. I do believe that by this time, the range had been whittled down to 2300, 2600 Vanden Plas and Vittesse; I have an AR brouchure from this period, which features SD1 & 800 !!

    This poverty spec. does lose some appeal, IMO. The front apron does seem to make the car look much more purposeful and not having the strips of wood across the front dash does seem to make it look a bit too plasticy for my liking (I get enough of that in my E60 !)

    Those sunroofs are brilliant thought; no waiting for the motor to wind along, just drag it back or forth.

  16. Gorgeous car – and somewhat of a fantasy numberplate – I didn’t want the SD1 to be deleted – sorry ARG fans, but the 800 was no replacement…….

  17. In a way, I agree. I don’t think that the 800 WAS a true replacement for the SD1 but it was what the market segment needed and was up against newer stuff from GM/Vauxhall and Ford but also Japan (including Honda !) The SD1’s design was rooted in the ’70s. Although I think that the styling was spot on and could easily have been updated, the rest of the car was showing its age. I guess that going in partnership with Honda was a very cost-effective way of getting a very modern car into market. It’s a shame the Vittesse couldn’t have continued above it with a 3.9 litre V8 !

  18. Nice car really and acredit to owners…
    I have just purchased an 8000 miles on the clock (yes 13.000KM as I live In Italy) from new SD1 2000 which should be to lowest mileage SD1 in Italy, in beautiful orriginal like new car.

  19. Surely a 13,000Km SD1 Rover 2000 would be a perfect candidate for the return of “Car of the Month”…

  20. Thanks for blogging the car – I maybe wouldn’t have spotted it if you hadn’t. I was looking for a good Renown !

    Dead chuffed.
    OK have purchased now. As it appears in the photos – excellent. The Doc did a great job and his efforts are worth the money he asks. It was previously for sale on classic cars and he who gets there first can buy. Two rust areas – RH rear wheel arch lower edge – a big gob of filler in there and on the inside face of the tailgate at the lower edge of the rear screen. Screen out job to fix and maybe cheaper to just get a new tailgate. 5 speed box great, interior great, engine great. Not a spot of rust on the lower edges of any of the doors or around the wheel arches apart from RH rear as described. Lovely job done on the headlining. 5 new tyres. It sits up at the back in a crazy way ! Standard springs V self levellers and softer springs ? Master plan is to get Vitesse alloys, self levellers, cruise control and air con on it. (Anyone breaking such a car or have spares – or anything else likely to be useful ?) Yes I know, if I wanted all that I should have bought a V8 Vanden Plas. Well I didn’t because I wanted the small engine 6. This car is going to get used and somebody has to pay the fuel bills.

    Was matt black finish of the sills starting about 2″ below the door shut line standard ? Wasn’t that a retrograde step to put that black plastic grill under the headlights rather than that posh body coloured panel with the swage line ? Yuk. Still you can’t have everything.

    Oh and rear suspension appears quite vague but nothing that cannot be sorted out with a few new rubber bushes.

  21. How can it be that the last MoT certificate on this car ran out in November 2012, only a year after this advert came to light? It seems like a terrible waste.

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