Rover 2000 TC
about $4500 to spend for a car should at least test drive the Rover 2000 TC – no
matter what type of car the thinks he wants. In our opinion the 2000 TC
represents the very best in contemporary automotive design for the general
marketplace. It is a car sparkling with well thought out innovations: in body
design, in construction, in suspension and – to a lesser extent – in powerplant.
Best of all, these innovations have been created to work together; so you don´t
end up with a car that has all the roadholding capabilities of a slot car but
the performance of a wind-up engine. Instead, the 2000 TC is a car that excels
in every department from comfort, to handling, to general craftmanship, to high
speed touring ability.
predecessor, the Rover 2000, was conceived in the late Fifties as a sort of
dream assignment for a group of young and talented Rover engineers. After five
years in the design stage, it was introduced in the fall of 1963 and was quickly
hailed by the normally critical automotive press as a significant advance in the
design of production cars. Now with the improved performance available with the
2000 TC (Twin Carburetor), Rover has come up with an automotive tour de force.
appearance of the 2000 TC is not startling, it is both pleasing and functional.
The dual headlights, mounted in the grille, and fender-mounted front turn
signals and parking lights provide ample road illumination. They are protected
by a sturdy bumper which is properly placed to ward off damage from careless
parkers. Eminently visible tail lights are also placed high enough to be out of
harm´s way. The lines of the car are crisp and such that they do not restrict or
interfere with visibility. It is also obvious that careful workmanship has gone
into the construction of the car: the body panels all align perfectly and the
finish would make even George Barris proud.
The ride is
satin-smooth and absolutely free of harshness, pitch or roll. Below 80 mph the
interior is silent save for the comforting, muffled drone of the 1987 cc engine
and a noticeable – but not unpleasant – amount of road noise from Pirelli “Gold
Stripe” Cinturato tires.
suspension is similar in geometry to a normal unequal length wishbone system,
but the load forces are fed aft to the cowl structure rather than upward and
inward to the suspension pillars. The advantage of such an arrangement is that
normal inward flexing – inherent with suspension pillars – is eliminated by
transmitting all pressure back to the rigid bulkhead/firewall. In addition, any
tendency for the front end to dive under braking is curtailed by this
arrangement. A unique “sliding tube” De Dion axle completely eliminates any
camber change in the rear wheels, thereby enhancing roadholding even further.
The Rover´s suspension was specifically designed to take advantage of the
characteristics of radial ply tires, which, as mentioned earlier, are standard.
The result is just about the best roadholding and comfort available in any
If there is
anything the original 2000 could be faulted on, it was its rather anemic
acceleration. This has been rectified with the 2000 TC. The five main bearing,
single overhead camshaft engine is still rough at idle. but what four-cylinder
engine isn´t? Once underway it is capable of getting to 60 mph in 11.5 seconds
and even at peak revs, it never sounds busy or out-of-breath. We made several
extended trips at high speeds and found the engine to be willing and responsive
throughout. The short throw, very positive four-speed transmission is another
outstanding feature; although when the driver´s seat was properly adjusted for
us, it was a long reach to find Third. Another minor annoyance is the position
of the gas pedal. It is suspended from underneath the dash and our right foot
often wished for a more stable arrangement.
the car, both driver and passengers are teated to a feeling of security and
reassurance; a feeling heightened by the 2000 TC´s completely predictable road
behaviour. The seats are well shaped, firm and almost infinitely adjustable. The
backs of the front seats are padded, which makes them safer and more comfortable
for rear seat passengers. Shoulder harnesses are fitted as standard equipment
and, once adjusted, they too are extremely comfortable. When you´re settled in
with everything adjusted to your taste, you have a made-to-measure feeling that
is quite unique.
panel is attractive and comprehensive. It´s composed of two modular units; one
for dials, gauges and indicator lights, the other for switches, radio and heater
controls. Incidentally, the heater is efficient and it doesn´t require a
master´s degree in environmental engineering to get it properly adjusted.
The Rover 2000
series also boasts of a unit construction chassis. It is, just as the ads claim,
a skeleton with a body over it, like a human being´s. The inner skeleton is a
self-supporting, load-carrying structure that can be driven around without the
body panels and still not lose anything in the way of rigidity or structural
integrity. And when the body panels are bolted on they are not doing any work,
so there is no flexing, no drumming, no fatiguing vibrations to annoy the
driver. The Rover 2000 TC is a truly quiet car that stays quiet.
Automobile Association of Great Britain awarded its Gold Medal to the Rover
Company “for the high degree of inherent safety incorporated in the design and
construction of the 2000 car”. It was the first such medal to ever be awarded
and we are wholeheartedly in favour of the choice and the recognition given this
Top speed 108
0-60 mph 11.5