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Unrestored Original: 1966 Rover P6 2000SC

Imagine being a young professional in the UK in the early 1960s. As someone who is upwardly mobile and wanting an executive sedan, your choices were relatively limited. There were very few imports from overseas – the Japanese and Korean Manufacturers had not really begun to get going on imports yet, and the Germans were still recovering and had not really found their feet yet. However, in the UK there were countless manufacturers, most of whom do not exist today, where you could buy either an economical or luxury sedan, without much in the middle. King of filling in this gap was Rover, who in 1963 released the P6 – the first car the win the European Car of the Year award. If you want to grab a slice of British executive saloon goodness, then head over to Craigslist here, where you can buy the P6 from Colfax, California for $4,750. Thanks to numskal for this tip!

Whilst it may be laughable that this was considered semi-luxury for its day, there are a number of features that made it stand out from its competitors at the time. It was built in between the large 3-liter luxury saloons (from Jaguar) and the cheaper Fords with 1.5 engines and was meant to have mass-market appeal. The car had 4 disc brakes on its wheels, a synchromesh transmission, and de Dion tube suspension at the rear.

Luckily, our car today is completely original, even down to still having the dealer plate. The seller also gives us a fantastic background story as to where this car has been and how it ended up in their hands. Even better is that this is an original US model P6, which is relatively rare. Given its original condition, it will need some recommissioning. The car’s engine starts and runs ok, but the suspension and brakes need an overhaul. The seller states there is no rust, and there has been adequate rust-proofing on the car.

On the interior, it’s all in original condition, but a bit worse off given its age – the seller states the original dash and front seats are likely to need refurbishing or replacing. The good news is that this comes with a California title and after some light work can be driven again. Given the car is inexpensive, and parts are easily found and readily available this could be back on the road in a few short weeks. So would you like to take on this easy restoration and have a unique car in your area?


  1. alphasud Member

    Does anyone remember the V8 juice commercials? That is what I would be thinking if I bought this P6. “I could of had a V8”

    Like 5
    • Car Nut Tacoma

      Who needs a V8 engine for a car like this? Unless you need that extra power to tow a small caravan (travel trailer) or if you’re in a race with other British cars of the same class?

      Like 4
  2. Rex Kahrs Rex Kahrs Member

    I really like the styling of these cars. Yeah, the 1.5 Litre isn’t a dragster, but who cares? I like the oddball factor.

    Like 6
    • SubGothius

      This is a 2-litre. The mention of a 1.5 was referring to cheaper British Fords of the era, as the sort of low-end option to the high-end Jags that this Rover would fit right in-between,

      Like 5
  3. Car Nut Tacoma

    Beautiful looking Rover P6. This has always been my favourite generation P6 Rover. I love the front end of this car. I find it way more attractive than the changed grille of later models.

    Like 3
    • GitterDunn

      Agreed, Car Nut! They are are rare sight here in the US. The P6 were also a bit unusual in that they were strictly a 4-seater. They have 4-wheel disc brakes, and the rears are inboard, like a Jaguar.

      Back in the day, my dad, who has always had a taste for interesting cars (Peugeot, Citroën, BMW, etc.) owned a ’66 Rover P6 in white, with the navy blue sail panels and matching pinstripes, and the optional chrome-and-black Rostyle wheels. What a great looking car that was!

      Like 3
      • Concinnity

        … and using the same brakes as the XKE, with the same brake pads.

        Like 2
  4. Retrogreg

    SC = single carb. The TC = twin carb being the more prevalent car found in NA. Great drivers when done right – make sure to get a shop manual!

    Like 0
  5. Solosolo UK Solosolo Member

    My friend had one of these and I had a Ford Cortina V6 2.5 litre pickup. On a road trip, him towing a trailer with a 1913 Morgan aboard, and I was towing a trailer with my 1934 Austin Ten on top, he easily out pulled my Cortina on every hill we encountered! Great car and extremely comfortable for a Brit car. In later years I had a Rover P5b V8 coupe, and that’s another story.

    Like 4
  6. Mitch

    British ‘baroque’. I would take this thing in closer selection
    only without drivetrain. With a 4.0 engine from the (38A)
    Range Rover, a mechanical 5 speed automatic, rear diff
    lock and ABS. Then the missing a/c would be included.

    To say it would be a powerhouse in a silk glove.

    Like 1
  7. Martin Horrocks

    Really not true about limited choice in the UK in the mid 60s. BMW, Alfa, MB, Citroen, Peugot, Lancia, Volvo etc were all available as well as many UK products. They cost more because of import duty, but the choice was there.

    The P6 was a revolutionary car for Rover, taking significant features from Citroen DS. It was very well-received in all markets, particularly by Car & Driver, R&T in the USA. The early version is the puredt, but a labour of love to restore.

    Like 3
    • Mitch

      Ya. Why wiped they all of this industry away? A question
      of Thatcher? The tories? Or only coming globalism?
      Some great marques gone like Alvis some Bristol TVR
      Jensen MG Triumph.
      And Rover at least. The Rove’s built as Honda where the
      last good cars they made, the junk BMW sold after we
      drop into the sinkhole.

      Like 2
      • Gerard Frederick

        The BMW purchase of Rover was possibly the biggest boondoggle in automotive history. In order not to ruffle any feathers, they left the entire Rover management in place and hoped for the best. This resulted in BMW almost being bankrupted due to horrendous quality control problems, not to forget the very bad attitude of the stiff upper lippers. They finally dumped the make , practically giving it awat. When buying Mini, they didn´t make the same mistakes and ended up with a winner and the best Mini ever built.

        Like 3
  8. Lemansguy1968

    Since all the body panels bolt on including door skins and roof one could option a complete set of exterior panels in a different color should you want to change it’s color. I remember seeing the ad in the magazine back in the day. I’m sure it wasn’t cheap.

    Like 3
    • Concinnity

      Except that ‘MINI’ was part of the whole Rover group combine, as was Land Rover. BMW stuffed the whole thing up by ruining the release of the last Rover, the 75, and by refusing to deal honestly with the co-owner at the time, Honda.

      Like 3
      • Gerard Frederick

        So, I forgot completely, BMW didn´t deal honestly——-bla, bla, bla. Of course. Thank you for enlightning me, Geez gosh, those baaaaaaad fellows in Munich, not even Honda was safe from them.

        Like 1
      • Concinnity

        The real problem was that BMW thought it was buying Austin/Morris and Mini and everyone in England thought they were buying Rover, the maker of BMW sized middle class cars. That’s why BMW was happy with Mini. They never wanted Rover the marque. To see how far Rover had fallen in design quality, compare this P6 to the dumpy BMW 2000 of the same time. The BMW was behind the Rover in every area including build quality. But BMW persevered with the help of a capable US importer giving them good advice, Rover didn’t.

        Like 5
  9. Psychofish2

    And I love that all the panels can be unbolted and replaced.

    I like Checkers and Larks [as well as the Saturn S and ION for the same thing.

    The one styling element that has always bothered me if that the top of the front fender edge to the bottom is too short for the the car’s profile.

    The 71 AMC Matador had the same sort of thing and it’s something my eyes can never make work.

    Like 1
  10. Jonathan Einhorn

    I had this car in red and single carb. Worse car I ever owned. Continuous engine problems (usually head gasket…).

    Like 0

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