|Wheels||Steel with hubcaps|
Rover's lovely 3500 P6B, one of the first executive sports saloons, was the V8-powered variant of the innovative four-cylinder P6, itself launched to general acclaim in October 1963. Voted European Car of the Year in 1964, the P6 has an advanced unibody design with an inner skeleton of stressed steel, to which the outer panels and mechanicals were bolted on. The Rover employs a De Dion rear end to give it a sophisticated ride, four-wheel disc brakes and crisply modern styling by the talented David Bache. Proving a hit with middle class professionals, Rover broadened the appeal of the 2000 series when it was discovered the alloy block 3.5-litre V8, already fitted to the P5B, would slot neatly into the P6's engine bay. With only a minor weight penalty over the four-cylinder engine, the V8 developed substantially more power that, combined with stiffer springs, larger shock absorbers and bigger front disc brakes, made the Rover a serious freeway burner. Sold initially as an automatic only, with a Borg Warner 35 unit, a manual was later introduced as well. Comfortable, with superb solid build quality and excellent period performance, the Rover 3500 is a very enjoyable and achievable way to get into classic collecting. Parts are plentiful, the cars are simple to work on and are still capable of being used on a daily basis.