Thanks to a timely reminder from David Rootes I made it to the Rare Breeds Car Show at the Haynes International Motor Museum on Sunday.
Amongst a variety of rare vehicles was this 1969 Series I Rover 3500 which preceded the Series II Rover 2200 SC I looked at last week. P6 models fitted with the aluminium 215 Buick derived V8 are easily distinguishable from their 4 cylinder siblings by the extra air intake below the bumper.
The engine compartment of the P6 was originally designed to accommodate a Rover gas turbine motor, but this option never came to fruition and instead the 158 hp twin carburettor V8 as had been fitted to the the Rover P5B was fitted to the top of the range P6 models.
According to the owner of this Estoura variant only 157 P6 saloons were converted to estate / station wagon models between 1969 and 1976. This is the oldest of 4 Series 1 Estoura’s known to have survived.
Conversion of the saloon P6 to Estoura spec included replacing the original roof and C pillars with a new pod, designed by Brian Roll, that was riveted and welded in by FLM Panelcraft of Battersea. Although the conversion was approved by Rover and did not affect warranties no rust protection was added to bare surfaces which were simply painted over with the out come that these cars are more prone to rot than standard P6’s.
Once FLM had converted the P6 shell the cars were sent to either Crayford, HR Owen or Hurst Park Motors where a variety of interior and exterior trims were fitted.
The load space while significantly improved is not particularly deep or easy to access even for a canine compared to a modern day Estate / Station Wagon or MPV.
Thanks for joining me on this Estoura edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’, I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !