Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - Tom
Mid 90s, cheap and fast.

I am considering buying a circa ?95 Rover 800 fastback, as they are so cheap and indeed fast.
Dear all in the back room,

I cannot decide between a Rover 800 Vitesse {2 litre 4 cyl turbo , 200 BHP} and an 827 Sterling {24 valve 2.7 litre auto ? Honda Engine and power train}

The 2 litre in slightly more economical and faster, however a turbo charged Rover 2 litre engine will be more ?stressed? than the Honda 2.7 litre normally aspirated unit.

I would assume at that age that a turbo will be nearing the end of its life? The Vitesse is perhaps more likely to have been thrashed, has expensive low profile tyres and lowered {road humps !!!} lowered suspension.

The petrol and insurance are not a problem. Which is likely to give me the least problems?

Any suggestions please, on the Rover 800 above, or can you suggest any other motors that are as well equipped, large, cheap fast?

Thanks Tom
Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - David Lacey
Briefly, the 2 litre (T series) engine 'tends' to leak oil from the head gasket area. It is a design fault and is only temporarily curable by head gasket replacement. There are some good ones, some worse ones. Other than that, it is a good reliable engine capable of good performance whilst returning respectable fuel economy.

My advice is to go for the 2.7 litre Honda V6 engine with either auto or manual transmission. Both 'boxes are Honda units and give next to no problems.
Fuel consumption is the only penalty but 25MPG should be attainable.


Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - ladas are slow
or you could just go for an old honda accord, which still has a better image than the rover 800, partly because the rover 800 are now being used as taxi's.
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - T lucas
Any 800 is a seriously rubbish car and should only be used for banger racing,mind you,it would probably break down on the first lap.
Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - David Lacey
Yes - they did have their shortcomings, but 1996-on cars were better.
I have many customers who had 800's and were very pleased with them.
Mileages in excess of 150K have been recorded by 3 cars we look after - they are very clean examples indeed.

I guess it comes down to how they are treated....

Yes, we all know about the head gasket problems with the KV6 unit and the oil leak(s) from the T series unit but the remainder of the car is fairly robust, using Honda sourced parts.

The wiring on early Sterlings was, well, bloody awful!!
These cars were an electrical nightmare!


Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - THe Growler
I rented a Sterling once, from LHR, to take 3 Jap VIPS's to a company conference. It broke down 20 mins after leaving the airport. If the situation has been reversed and I was in a Lexus meeting 3 UK VIP's at Narita, I would doubtless have committed hara-kiri. If anyone says "Rover" to me today, I hope they're calling the dog, not talking about a car. A load of junk then, so definitely now.
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - Roger Jones

Just to say that a friend bought a nearly new 827 in the mid-90s and when he changed cars in 2000 he he got little more than scrap money for it because of bodywork corrosion. Beware.
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - G
Definately the V6 over the turbo.

Alternative - Mondeo V6.
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - Kev
Cougar? Basically a coupe mondeo. I quite liked them. Might be a bit too new/expenisve though
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - T lucas
Ive had plenty of ex Met&Gov 800s and yes the Honda V6 is very good,subject to regular oil changes,but the rest of the car is total junk and falls apart for fun.The only good thing about an 800 is when the new owner drives off down the road.
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - John
The Rover 827 is vastly underated don't get a two litre but go for the V6 Honda engine.My mechanic works for the police in London which used the 827s told me that they only replaced one engine in the 12 year they used them.(Now they use Omegas 3 litres which he says are a nightmare to keep on the road) I 've had two 827s and they've been great cars,very smooth very quick the only downside is petrol consumption 28MPG on a run but 21MPG when pushed.Try Manheim Auctions occaisionally ex government cars come through.Parts are expensive but you can get almost anything from specialist breakers yards.Try one !
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - FfwlCymraeg
I had a vauxhall calibra a few years ago.

Should be OK if you dont get a crappy one like me with a knacked head gasket!

Just traded it in for a new car instead of spending two grand fixing it!
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - Tom S-S
How about a Saab 9000 Turbo. Friend of mine had a 1994 model for sale done 120,000 miles but had a new engine last year. What does he want £1000!!! These will last forever and are quick he is only getting rid of it to make way for a 95 2.3 HOT
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - Tom
Your friend still got the £1000 Saad turbo then, if so where does he live?

Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - Steve G
What about a Alfa Romeo 164 .
The 3.0 V6 Cloverleaf model has 200 + bhp and wont rust.
Re: Fast and Cheap mid 90s motors - Mike H
Get a Saab 9000 2.3 Turbo (200hp). Alternatively the 2.3t (note small "t") with 175bhp (otherwise known as 2.3 ecopower). Solid as a rock, good ones have stopped depreciating. Lots of room. Safe as houses. Depending on budget, the very last 2.3 Turbo CSE Anniversaries had 225bhp (as did 2.3 Carlsson c. 1990-1991).

But then I'm biased.

Value my car