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The Rover 600 Series is a large family car range that was produced by the British manufacturer Rover from 1993 to 1999.
The Rover 600 exterior was designed by Rover, a reskin of the European Honda Accord, also built in the United Kingdom by Honda in Swindon. The core structure and vast majority of the engineering content was sourced from Honda but the vehicles were designed at the same time, with a small Rover team on site in Japan. Colour and trim derivatives were also used to help separate the Rover from the Honda in the marketplace.
The 1.8, 2.0 and 2.3 litre straight-4 petrol engines were all provided by Honda. However, the 2.0 litre turbodiesel Rover L-Series engine and turbocharged T-Series engines were developed by Rover itself, evolutions of units already available elsewhere in the Rover model range.
The 600's interior included wood and chrome trim, as well as relatively high equipment levels, although rear legroom was criticised as rather constrained. The interior was similar to the Japanese built Honda Ascot Innova, except with a few cosmetic changes. Carpet was also not evident along the bottom trim of the dashboard, although it did feature there on the Innova.
The Honda derived chassis was reported to give a comfortable but unsporting ride. Given the Rover's equipment, prices were reasonably competitive in the large family car segment and considerably lower than the price of such compact executive cars such as the BMW 3 Series and Audi A4.
Launched on 19 April 1993, the 600 Series replaced the Montego saloon in the Rover range, but because the 600 was positioned considerably further upmarket in relation to its predecessor, the entry level Montego models were kept in production primarily for the fleet market.
Unlike the Montego, there was never an estate version of the 600 Series, with no direct replacement being launched for the estate version of the Montego when it was discontinued at the end of 1994, although an estate would eventually resurface with the Rover 75 Tourer when it launched in 2001. Production continued until the beginning of 1999, when it was replaced with the retro styled Rover 75, developed under BMW's stewardship. The 75 also replaced the larger 800 Series. The 600 had been a popular car in the compact executive sector, with a large percentage of sales being to the fleet market.
In 1984, when in the final stages of developing the Rover 800 Series saloon, it was planned to sell the sell the hatchback version from its launch a year later as the Rover 600 Series, but these plans were abandoned and instead the hatchback became part of the 800 Series.
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