In a message dated 29/03/00 22:13:45 GMT Daylight Time, email@example.com
<< Subj: RE: Rover today
Date: 29/03/00 22:13:45 GMT Daylight Time
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Westerdale, Bob)
To: GuyotLeonF@aol.com ('GuyotLeonF@aol.com'), email@example.com
File: message.txt (6931 bytes)
DL Time (57600 bps): < 1 minute
I, like many others I'm sure, have read with sadness of the abrupt and
unfortunate end of the BMW-Rover relationship. What puzzles me, though, is
all the high ranking Muckey-Mucks within the Unions, Government Agencies and
Management committees who are acting like this whole debacle caught them by
surprise. This is all about Money. There is no way that BMW management is
going to let a subsidiary (like Rover) repeatedly drag their balance sheet
into the red zone, particularly in today's robust (at least stateside)
economy. Perhaps I can be branded a Rabid Capitalist, but I cannot imagine
what would have led the Unions, Management and Gov. Guys to expect anything
less than the certain death of their company given the torrential flow of
red ink. I feel very badly for all the folks who may lose their
employment/careers etc., but it seems to me that the plain and obvious
truth is that Rover (everyone included), as a provider of a solution to the
question "who will make my new car?", has simply failed to meet the
requirements. The business, as currently structured, doesn't work, at least
if you consider a positive cashflow, without subsidy, to be a measure of
viability. I do not pretend to know what Alchemy sees in the future of
Rover, but it would be hopelessly naive to think it would be business as
Bob Westerdale >>
I actually agree pretty much with your sentiments Bob, I have just sat
through a one hour TV money programme about Rover and its' demise.
I do not blame BMW for this entire debacle. I really think that they were
ill-advised to take it on in the first place, and back when they did, I
predicted this very outcome.
I am just surprised that it went on for so long.
The biggest problem so far as I am concerned is that the cars that they
produced over the BL years were no darn good. Sure, there were a few
exceptions, but a very few. BL could never work from day one. I mean to say,
Austin designers designed the last TR sportscar...and just look at it.
OK, I will admit that I have a growing fondness for TR7's and more so TR8's
but lets face it, the switchgear, the brakes and the general build quality
left a lot to be desired! the rust protection was zero, or less, and you
couldn't even rest your arm on top of the door! The problem for the Austin
men is that they plain didn't comprehend the sports car ethos, and the
Triumph guys just couldn't work with them.
However, in the TR7/8's defence, like so many Triumphs before it, they were
sound in principle, if not in execution...and many an enthusiastic owner has
finished the development work on the car that the factory never did!
(actually, most Triumphs were much like that- no come on guys, be honest now!)
Amongst many errors were the use of czechoslovakian steel from mid 73
onwards, much thinner and with a higher carbon content, harder to weld and
faster to rust.
(I have heard it said that the rust was built in!)
The Stag should have never had its' own V8 engine, as it was underdeveloped
due to lack of funds, and the perfectly good Rover (ex Buick) V8 was
available at less cost,
but to be fair, once its' cooling and timing chain problems are sorted, the
Stag 3 litre V8 can be a very fine and smooth engine indeed, and it sounds
The TR8 Convertible should have been sold on the British market from day one,
and they would hav sold thousands!
The Dolomite Sprint, again fell into the same trap, with an underdeveloped
And whilst we are on the subject, there really should have been a
Do you really think it would have stolen away the TR Sportscar buyers, I
Some may say that hindsight is 20/20 and whilst they are correct, how
difficult could it have been to work out the above?
Some cars should never have been produced, let's face it...the Austin 1800
with the dreadful 5-speed gearbox, the Morris Marina/Ital, yech! and the
worst of all, the Austin Allegro, (list of faults longer than bandwidth
available), as for the 1970's Austin
Princess (wedge), oh my god! followed by the stodgy Maestro and Montegos, and
the rust bucket of the Rover SD1, with the truly awful 2300 and 2600 engines!
(based on overstretched Triumph units).
Yes, those last three cars were pretty capable machines, but and here is the
big but, the Build Quality was absolutely dire!
Leyland never stood a chance. Suicidal Union Activists, the mad, bad 1970's,
the oil crisis etc etc, no wonder it has come to the point it has now reached.
Ah well, perhaps Alchemy can effect a dead cat bounce, as the money men love
10 Nomex suits on
ps. these are only my personal opinions