Design with Style -- The Rover SD1
Rover and British Leyland were beset by problems in the mid 1970s. Out of
this cauldron of mismanagement came the Rover SD1 in 1976. It was called
SD for the Specialist Division and 1 for the first car to come from the
in-house styling department. Despite a dramatic, innovative design both
inside and out, the option of classic V8 grunt, and more or less
universally praised dynamics, the SD1's reputation -and its longevity
suffered at the hands of a company in meltdown.
And it could all have been so different. The car, which was styled by
Rover's design genius David Bache, had some grand ambitions. It had been
designed to look like a family version of contemporary Italian supercars
(they even got a load of Italian supercars in for comparison purposes early
in the design process), while the attractive interior was intelligently
designed from both a user's and an engineering perspective. Such was BL's
confidence in it that they ploughed £31 million into a new factory (which
in the end would be mothballed after just five years
it even received rave reviews from the motoring press. "It is hard to be
over-enthusiastic about the new 3500" said Autocar. "On every score, its
qualities justify any kind of enthusiasm. It would have been hard to
predict, especially looking at the bald paper specification, just how well
the car would perform, handle and ride.
"Add to that the spaciousness and aerodynamic efficiency of the body, and
the attention paid to ensuring that the car will last, and it is easy to
see why all competitors are casting worried glances, not only at the car
but also at its price. If the 3500 will be built in sufficient numbers, if
the quality can be maintained along with the price, and if the ground is
not cut from under its wheels by ill-advised legislation, the new 3500
should be one of the successes of the decade."
But production numbers, of course, could not be maintained and nor could
the quality. And all we are left with in the 21st century is a whole bag of
'what ifs' and a dwindling handful of what was once one of the most
promising cars ever to be created in Britain.
Rover SD1 V8 3500 VDP EFI Vitesse start up
1984 Rover 3500 VDP EFI start up and general quick view mid-point of
restoration. Thanks for viewing, more to follow when the car is finished.
PS - this is my Dad's! not mine -lolol! - like for solar panel charging the
phil's 5.3 v8 rover sd1 vitesse
phil leaving the february 16th meet of the rover sd1 club essex area at
the cross keys hatfield peveral in his 5.3 litre v8 rover sd1 vitesse.
for more information on the rover sd1, visit www.roversd1club.net
Jay's 3500 Vanden Plas and Nigel's 2600S
Here's Jay and Nigel leaving the Hampshire all Rover rally at the Four
Horseshoes, Long Sutton, on Sunday 29th June 2008.
Jay leaves first in his oporto red 1983 Rover SD1 3500 Vanden Plas,
followed by Nigel in his (also oporto red) 1982 2600S
For more information about the Rover SD1, visit www.roversd1club.net
2.6 SD1 back from the dead
Yes, it's back from the dead, though it might not be staying long!
Starting my 26 VDP for the first time in 6 years (at least).
Fuel is being fed from a jerry can off screen, via an electric fuel pump.
I really ought to be more careful!
Rover 3500 Vanden plas Burnout.
Rover 3500 vanden plas on the burnout pad at Dargaville 2012. A bit slow
starting off but it delivers the goods. Not many Rover 3500's on youtube.
steve's 1982 rover sd1 3500 vanden plas
here's steve leaving the cross keys in hatfield peveral after the march
meet of the rover sd1 club, essex area.
steve's car is a 1982 rover sd1 3500 vanden plas running a fuel injected
190bhp 3.5 litre rover v8 engine
for more information on the rover sd1 visit www.roversd1club.net
Rover SD1 after a few tweaks
Just a liitle test run after a bit of carb tuning......All within the speed
limits of course....it's worth watching for the noise! A big thankyou to
JDT Autos for getting it all set up. www.jdtautos.com
ROVER SD1 AND P6 RUNNING TOGETHER
My SD1 and P6 running together.
The SD1 is a 1984 3500 Vanden Plas fitted with a period fibresports
renegade bodykit, in Rover british racing green.
The P6 is a 1970 Three Thousand Five, and is totally original in it's
tobacco leaf brown paint.
The 800 is a 1998 820 Sterling in nightfire red, but who cares, it hasn't
got a V8 in it.