Rover 25 1.6 petrol 51 Reg - Part Ex or Scrap?

Hi there people!

2 years ago this Xmas, we bought what, from the outside, was a nice sporty looking (see title) from a local car lot, after having an independent guy check it over. It was £950 inc MOT and is the top spec edition with full black leather seats in Gunmetal Grey/black.

It has been a bit of a pain to be fair as the ignition has been dicky since just outside the 12 month warranty. We had it looked at our my OH's chosen garage a few times and within a week it would be playing up again, taking several attempts to start. The air con never worked and the speakers were gone on the left so it had little niggles but we were just happy to have indicators that worked and headlights we could flash without setting off the full beams from our last Escort 1998.

During ownership of the Rover, we have replaced 2 tyres and last year had the clutch replaced. This year we had fitted a new exhaust back box, then front, just this Autumn and really recently had the track rod ends and brake inbalance looked at.``

This summer, a sound started, like something caught in the wheel, going round and round but from the engine. My OH said it was a lazy lifter in the valves of the engine. Then OH decided to get it MOT'd before Xmas, as it was January normally and he didn't want that expense at that time of year. He took it to a friends garage who found £300 of issues. He then took it to his usual guy who seems to do the minimal work cheap and he fixed the track rod ends and brake in-balance and got it through the MOT + added some oil.

We thought we were home free, but then OH checked under the bonnet and found oil in the coolant and water under the car this last week. He started it one morning to go to work and it wouldn't go into gear. The clutch had gone again.

He managed later on that day, to limp it to his usual garage who said it was the same part we'd had changed when they did the clutch last year and should be under warranty still but OH stupidly has no receipt (he keeps all car stuff) and so garage will have to find their copy.

This was going on, then we got a call and the garage said the head gasket was about to go and it was terminal. OH has basically rolled over and told me it is only good for scrap and so we've gutted it and are about to ring around for scrap value. So £400 down the drain spent this Autumn.

Personally I think the garage is getting off lightly saying its terminal and giving up when, if it is under warranty still, the clutch should be fixed, as the HG hasn't gone yet and it wasn't overheating before this. I think we should be able to part ex it, rather than just get £150 scrap (based on what we got for the Escort).

Also we are looking at a Seat Leon 1.6 petrol 2006 5 door 60000 miles, top spec for £4500. Wondering whether to push that garage fixes clutch and try and get part ex on this Leon if it turns out in good nick.

Any thoughts?

BTW we know all about the HG issues with this Rover.

Firstly, I would NOT pay too

1 year 51 weeks ago

Firstly, I would NOT pay too much attention to people telling you to scrap it and buy a German or Japanese car. In my experience, Rovers are actually not bad cars, and providing they are looked after can be very reliable. Infact all 3 Rover's that I have owned have proved very reliable indeed, with my current Rover 45 on 160k miles (and NO its not a diesel. Its a petrol k series engine like yours).

I tend to find German cars, while maybe alright to drive and alright quality, tend to be very expensive to maintain. I know of several that have had HUGE bills (over £1k). Infact my best mate switched from his BMW 320Ci to a Honda Civic Type R for that very reason.

The people that go on about Jap cars, tend to be the ones who have a HIGH PERFORMANCE type of Japanese car. The ordinary ones are very bland and boring.


Regarding the clutch failure.....If the clutch has been replaced and it has now failed again, then I would be taking the car back to the garage that done it and INSISTING on them re-doing the job. It was obviously not done properly, or faulty parts where fit (in which case its not the garages fault, but they are still responsible for putting it right).

If the head gasket has indeed failed, I would advise you to look up any possible MG/Rover mobile mechanics in your area. Head over to, then you can get hold of an MG/Rover mobile mechanic, who will replace the head gasket along with the timing belt, tensioner and water pump etc. for less than £400. One will do everything for about £300 - which is nothing when you consider your getting the belts and a service done at the same time.

Well had quotes ranging from

2 years 4 days ago

Well had quotes ranging from £60 to Max £200. One seems pretty set on £180. Just wish we hadn't put the new Cat and Front Exhaust in and spent £400 on getting it through MOT. 

Ok thanks for taking the time

2 years 4 days ago

Ok thanks for taking the time to reply guys! I'll ring round some scrap yards then. [sigh]

Give up on the Rover, put it

2 years 4 days ago

Give up on the Rover, put it out of its misery and scrap it. Buy a Japanese car next time

To re-itterate what has

2 years 4 days ago

To re-itterate what has already been said, scrap it.

Unfortunately Rovers and MG of this period aren't great on the reliability front and because the company (as we knew it) doesn't exist any more the trade doesn't treat them kindly (depreciation).

Unless you have a desire to keep it for sentimental reasons, then the best place economically will be the scrap heap.



It's all about the twisties........

So, you spent less than a

2 years 5 days ago

So, you spent less than a grand on a Rover that's now 12 years old and you're surprised it has issues?

Get rid quick and spend no more on it. Don't bother fixing it, it'll be worth no more than £300 to £400 as a trade in if that, specially against a £4500 Seat. The Leon should be far more reliable. 




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