Lot 346: 1948 Rover 75 Sports Saloon
Rover’s range in the immediate post-war years was much the same as it had been in 1939, the first all-new Rover - the P4 - not appearing until the autumn of 1949. Before then an interim design - the P3 - combining the traditional styling of the existing P2 model with the engine, gearbox and running gear intended for its successor, filled the gap. Introduced in February 1948, the P3 featured 1.6-litre four-cylinder and 2.1-litre six-cylinder versions of Rover’s new inlet-over-exhaust engine, the model designations being ‘60’ and ‘75’ respectively. A separate chassis was retained, though the body was now of all steel construction rather than ash framed. Built in both four-light (sports saloon) and six-light body styles, the short-lived P3 is notable as the first production Rover equipped as standard with independent front suspension. The latter was becoming the norm for cars of all sizes, and Rover had first gone down the IFS route in the mid-1930s, offering it as an option on the Speed 14. For the ‘75’, Rover engineers Maurice Wilks and Gordon Bashford modified Girling’s ‘pyramidal’ suspension system and boxed in the P3’s chassis members, experience having demonstrated that soft springing required a stiff supporting structure. At the rear, the P3 chassis was altered to end ahead of the rear wheels, thus providing the space need for the additional suspension movement needed to match that at the front. The adoption of IFS made hydraulic front brakes a necessity, the old mechanical type being retained at the rear. After only 18-or-so months in production, the P3 bowed out, 1,274 60s and 7,837 75s having been completed in that time.
This four-light example of the Rover 75 was purchased by the vendor at Bonhams’ Harrogate Sale in November 2007 (Lot 665). At that time the car was reported as having been in regular use and was said to run well. It is presented today in good mechanical condition, though the bodywork would benefit from some cosmetic refurbishment of the door bottoms. Finished in black with red leather interior, ‘JVM 243’ is offered with Swansea V5 registration document and MoT to 22nd October 2008. No reserve.
Collectors' Motor Cars & Motorcycles|
Bonhams, National Motor Museum, Hampshire
|Hammer Price (inc premium)||£2530|
|Registration number||JVM 243|
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