Rover P5 cheap car challenge

The Rover P5 Coupe beat the odds and successfully completed the 320KM trip between Canberra and my workshop.   Unlike the Top Gear team, I did not have a support car and mechanics to help along the way. I simply had the rover toolkit (plus a few screwdrivers which were missing),  a couple of liters of oil and coolant, and a some radiator hoses I bought at SCA that look like they could have been cut down to fit the rover if needed.

The worst mishap I faced was the boot lid coming open along the way – my worries I may have lost my spares out the back were unfounded, it just needed closing and I was on my way.    The car performed well – the 3 liter straight six is incredibly smooth and the car would make a great freeway cruiser.    As it was about 33c on the day, the car was happiest at about 95km/h – I think the radiator needs boiling out as it runs very cool around town.     At that speed it would sit about 3/4 of the way up the normal zone on the (still working) temperature gauge. This Rover is the first old British car I’ve owned with a working clock that keeps accurate time!

Rover P5

The old DG gearbox sure puts out a lot of heat – I rather stupidly placed a bottle of cold water between the seat and the transmission tunnel and when I came to drink from it later on it was hot like a cup of tea!

The worst thing about the car was the condition of anything made of rubber that had not been replaced (fuel hoses looked quite new for example).   The suspension was pretty bad and I suspect the rubber is pretty much non existent.   You could feel the ultra light steering, but with all bushings rotted it was rather twitchy.     Despite all this you could see what nice cruising cars these would be.   The engine is super smooth and the interior is a very nice place to be.     I plan to sell this car as I don’t have the time to put it right, but perhaps one day I will buy another P5.  One where a lot more of the work has been done.

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