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Starley and Sutton were bicycle builders. The Rover name originated with the Rover safety cycle so called because it was safe compared to the penny-farthings of the day. Starley and Sutton, and others were experimenting with safety cycles in the 1880's but the Rover of 1884 caught on and formed the basis of the car manufacturer to be. Rover developed a reputation for respectable, not very expensive cars.
- 4wd.sofcom.com/4WD.html

After WWII Rover saw a market for a light Jeep-style of four wheel drive. Building prototypes on Jeep chassis, they eventually came up with the alloy-bodied Land-Rover released in 1948.

Always an innovative company, Rover's experiments with gas turbine power included racing a car in the Le Mans 24 hour race in 1963 and again in 1965 .

Rover became caught up in the first nationalised, then privatised, grouping of independent British motor companies - British Motor Corporation (BMC), British Leyland, and eventually the whole collection was called `Rover', the least tainted name left. In 1988 British Aerospace (BAe) acquired Rover Group which it sold in 1994 to BMW who never managed to make it profitable, although the Land Rover section did well.


2000 March: The new Rover 75 sedan (right) made its Australian debut at the Melbourne Motor Show in preparation for a launch which was shortly called off . . .

2000 April: BMW announced it would break up and sell Rover Group, keeping the new Mini for itself. Ford bought Land Rover. An investment company, Alchemy, was to buy the remnants of the car section and trade as `MG', but the future remained uncertain as of April/May.

2000 May: The Phoenix group was successful in buying Rover and MG from BMW.

2001 March: MG Rover was back at the Melbourne Motor Show and a new range of MG cars was brought out in Geneva.

Go to the MG, history, gas turbine and Land-Rover pages

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