Rover 25 2.0 TDi SEi 101PS | CARkeys

17 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Rover 25 2.0 TDi SEi 101PS | CARkeys

Rover 25

2.0 TDi SEi 101PS review

I feel sorry for Rover – and then I feel guilty about my feelings . On the one hand, I want the last vestige of the once great British production car industry to do well, but then they only seem to have themselves to blame by turning out bland cars with technology largely abandoned by other manufacturers years ago.

Add to that the underlying feeling that those in power at the head of the company are more interested in their investments than the cars their factories produce, and you’re left with no surprise that Rover’s sales figures have fallen through the floor.

First impressions of the facelifted 25 were favourable. It’s still the same basic shape which unfortunately always reminds me of the disastrous Austin Allegro, but at least it has been tarted up a little for 2005. The front end is pretty much unchanged apart from a few tweaks here and there such as lens-covered reflector headlamps, but the biggest difference is at the back with new rear door and bumper styling.

Inside, the car has a new dashboard layout which suggests to me economies of scale, which in itself is not a bad thing but can lead to blandness across a range instead of individual personality for each model.

My test car was the two-litre SEi turbo diesel in 101bhp form – there is also a 112bhp version – which had an on-the-road price of £12,035 but came with an almost invisible £2000 worth of extras. They include £500 for 16 alloys and painted rear spoiler; £290 for electric rear windows (standard on almost every car nowadays); £325 for metallic paintwork and £265 for totally unnecessary – for a car this size – rear parking sensors. Standard equipment on the other hand included front fog lamps, Trafficmaster, steering wheel remote audio controls and leather steering wheel.

From the driver’s seat the car felt pretty much like every other small Rover I’ve ever sat in, even with the updated instrument panel.

On the road, even with £300 worth of sports suspension on the test car, it felt boring and mundane – and slow off the mark too with a disproportionate amount of diesel rattle from under the bonnet.

This car is dull and it beats me why anyone would want to spend this sort of money when there are so many better alternatives – with bright ideas and newer technology – on the market. I’m afraid all I can say in its favour is that the diesel engine is very economical, turning in anything up to 54 miles for every gallon. Unfortunately that’s not enough to counterbalance the drawbacks.

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