Happy New Year

Keith Adams 

Rover SD1 tyre
Probably not an ideal solution, but the 1976 vintage Michelin XAS spare needed to be fitted

Well, despite the gruesome damp, dank, disgusting Northamptonshire weather today, I decided I needed to give the Polski-Rover some much needed love and attention. It’s been a while since I used the old thing and, since its tax expired at the end of August, it’s been tucked up safe and sound in my garage. 

I’m not someone who likes to see cars parked up, unused, and, as a result, I stayed away from the garage and pretended the SD1 wasn’t actually there. That’s never a good thing to do for a driver like me and so, when I went out to the car to pump up the slow puncture this morning, I actually found that it’s a bigger problem than first thought – it had detached from the rim. Anyway, out came the spare – an unused 1976 Michelin XAS – and on it went. 

I popped on my excellent Ring battery conditioner, as starting was a bit on the lazy side (but brilliant considering it had been laid up for so long). This piece of kit is brilliant in revitalising a couple of (what I thought) were dead batteries, one on a family member’s Golf TDI Mk4, the other on the (still for sale) Citroen AX GT which seems to have taken root here. 

Looking at the old girl, getting back in, smelling its unremitting brownness inside, it seems a bit tragic that I’m not still using the car on a daily basis and I know I need to get in and start driving it again soon. I suppose I need to get the manifold sorted, the exhaust re-attached and the floppy gear linkage repaired, then it’ll be good to go. 

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk 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


  1. Your SD1 is looking great – I can’t quite believe that you are looking to sell after all the work that has gone into it, although the NSU is also a fantastic car.

    The only thing I am not keen on is the colour – a modern(ish) Rover hue would really flatter the car.

  2. I’m sorry that you’re considering giving your SD1 up. Try to make sure that whoever you sell it to wants to keep it for a while.

    Oh, and if anyone tries to pay for it with a cheque drawn on a BBC account, turn them down!

  3. You have an AX GT for sale? I didn’t know about that one…

    The Polski-Rover is very tempting, but I’m still stuck with this blasted Talbot Tagora Mk2, aka “C6”.

  4. Aye. AX GT – heater matrix leaking, so plumbed out *replacement in the boot*, otherwise good. 66k miles, 1988(F), MoT August 2011, Tax August 2011… buy it while it’s still hot :).

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