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Homepage. This page: Visitors story about his classic Rover from '65

Rover P5 1965

Rover P5 saloon
It was in January 2000 that my wife and I took charge of our new pride and joy - a 1965 MK II Rover P 5 saloon. We had previously been using a 1969 Morris Minor Traveller, so the transformation to the Rover was dramatic to say the least. Having used the Traveller for a short while following a reasonably major rebuild, both of us came to the same conclusion that we needed a larger car. Partly from the comfort point of view and partly because there wasn't quite the room we had hoped for in the Traveller.

So in December 1999 we began to look for a replacement, and it wasn't too long before we found an advert for a 1965 Rover P5 Saloon in Juniper Green. So off to Chesterfield we went.

We took a look at the car in the show room and thought it looked, as described, in very good condition, but very big. We had seen an advert for another P5B Coupe, also in Chesterfield, so we went to look at that as well, just to compare the two. Although the Admiralty Blue Coupe was indeed beautiful we both felt that the Green Saloon was more us. So back we went for a test drive. The car was a joy to ride in, the engine was almost silent (apart from one tappet shouting it's song) and the gearbox very smooth. (I was yet to find the problems!). We were sold and so was the car.

We said we would have it providing the exchange price for the Traveller was acceptable, it was, and the deal was done, the Rover had a new home. As with all cars bought from dealers, it looked like new, the crome shone and the paint work gleamed. All was well with the world till I came to drive it home. This was a distance of some twenty miles to Sheffield, and the man said " you'll have plenty of fuel to get home, I've put a fivers worth in this morning". He had obviously not taken into account that the car was only doing about eleven miles to the gallon. I ran out of fuel about 500 yds from the garage I was heading for near home. Not to worry I thought, this car has a reserve tank of a gallon and a half. Not when the reserve fuel pump hasn't been used for ages it hasn't. But I was lucky, I rolled the car down the hill and as we got on the flat the pump sipped the last few drops of fuel it could find and the engine bust into life. Just enough to get to the garage. Forty-two pounds and a full tank later, off we went home. Guess what I fixed first? You got it, the fuel pump - all it need was the points cleaning and it was away. I recommend all P5 drivers to run on the reserve pump regularly to keep it in good working order.

It wasn't until a little later that I realised the rate at which the car was swallowing fuel, I logged the mileage and amounts required to fill up - checked with the book as to what I should get - and found I had problems. I investigated, and found that the economiser fitted to the carburettor was totally choked up. After a through clean and carburettor overhaul the situation was worse. In desperation I contacted J R Wadhams for advice and they suggested replacing to economiser. Success, I had reached the dizzy heights of eighteen miles to the gallon urban and up to twenty three when driven carefully on a run. As the weeks pasted I began to address some of the smaller problems I found. Things like interior lights not working, doors that would not close unless excessive effort was used and small parts of the interior that were damaged and need to be replaced.

Then I made the next mistake! I decided to address the waving speedometer. Well I thought, if I grease the cable this should sort this out. It did. But then six to eight weeks later the mileometer stopped recording. I stripped the speedometer to assess the problem, oh dear, the mechanism was full of grease. It would seem that there is no seal into the speedo drive at the back of the dial. Warning to all, when lubricating speedo cables don't over grease, and leave the last foot free of grease so as to prevent ingress into the dial.

The only other major item has been the offside 'D' post which needed replacing due to a small hole in the joint sealer in the upper wheel arch, allowing water to get into the box section and do its worst. Apart from these minor problems the car has done over three thousand miles this year (2000) and has never faulted once. Work to maintain and improve the general condition of the car will continue and if anything interesting happens I will let you know. This has been one of the best cars we have owned to date, and one that we shall keep hopefully for many years to come.

This just one of a number of stories & images of classic vehicles owned by surfers who have called by my oldclassiccar website - why not send me your details and see your classic on the web?? Click on the image link below to find out more, its easy!
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