on the run: Rover 2600 breaks cover

R2600As any classic car nut will tell you, using a car too little can be just as bad – if not worse – than using it too much. That’s why my mint early Rover 2600 – anoraks will love the original Dutton Foreshaw dealer number plates and silver wipers – which has only done 14,000 miles from new, last year developed a common mechanical malady.

It all came down to the original thermostat, which after years of relative inactivity decided to stick shut. Trouble is, it did so on a high speed run down the M3, with the SD1 nudging bumpers with reps in fast moving Audis, rather than me having a gentle pootle down to the pub. Oh, and because the engine’s coolant temperature sensor is situated on the radiator, there was no warning of the overheating happening – the block was boiling but the rad stayed cool. That’s, ermm, another design fault for the British Leyland engineering office to address!

So now, this beautiful shrine to nineteen seventies design is now getting a new old stock cylinder head with hardened valve seats, new valve seals and head gasket set, water pump, drive belts and so on. It should be peachy, when it’s done. Then there’s the small question of a set of new shocks and springs to fit, and assorted suspension bushes – plus my period seventies Pioneer stereo. Roll on July…


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