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Homepage. This page: Interesting old photo showing a driver and passenger in their 8hp Rover Eight tourer.

Rover Eight.

Firstly thanks to Margo for allowing me to post this photograph on the website. Margo contacted me, asking if I could help identify the old car shown in the photo below.
Back to Car & Van Photographs - Page 3.

Rover 8

A bit of research confirmed that the photo shows a 1920s Rover 8 tourer, identical to these other early Rovers that feature elsewhere in the vintage photo section.
The Rover 8 was launched in 1919, although the reception was fairly mixed back in those days - it was said that it was 'very warm, fairly comfortable but frankly inelegant in design'. It wasn't designed to be a plush or expensive motorcar though, it was built to a price, making it accessible to the aspiring motorist that would otherwise not be able to afford a car. Reliability wasn't really a strong suit by all accounts, some examples being prone to losing their cylinder heads when pressing on!
In many ways the tiny 8hp Rover paved the way for future rivals that would come to dominate the small-car market some years hence - witness the Austin 7 and original Morris Minor, which took the same basic formula, updated it and made it reliable. They also offered cars in a variety of body and seating arrangements, something that could not be said for the earlier Rover.
Specification was less than lavish with the Eight, even the ignition switch was an extra. The basic cost price of the Rover was 220, which is interesting when compared with the 100 Ford 8hp in later years, that made motoring even more available. The car came with a folding hood, although sidescreens to keep the weather out would cost an extra 7. Braking was to the rear wheels only, and quarter-elliptic springs kept each corner off the road.

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