The soap opera that is unfolding in the United Kingdom regarding the death of the once-proud MG Rover automobile company continues unabated. Four former MG Rover executives who purchased the automaker from BMW back in May of 2000 for a £10 fee have responded to Lord Mandelson's decision to send the aging case to the Serious Fraud Office with a terse statement. Here's a snippet:
The saga that is the collapse of MG Rover and the subsequent four-year government probe into what went wrong has just taken another sordid and oddly-timed twist. Lord Mandelson, Secretary of State for the British Labour Party, has told the Financial Times that he was under "obligation" to pass the case to the Serious Fraud Office (is there a "Not So Serious Fraud Office?") following his review of the findings into the last days of MG.
There's a new MG TF on its way to replace the current TF, which is once again rolling out the doors at its Longbridge, UK ancestral home. The new TF will be available as a roadster, natch, and as a coupe, and based on the Roewe 550. AutoExpress has worked up some renderings based on insider information about the new rear-drive MG, and the car amounts to a smorgasbord of cues from a variety of unfortunately styled vehicles. There's a lot of X80 concept, a dash of the crosseyed Qvale Mangusta, and
The iconic British auto brand TVR will almost certainly not be making any more vehicles in the U.K. Instead, as the Independent reports, future models will most likely be built in Asia. Why? Because, Nikolai Smolensky, known as the "Baby oligarch," split off an administration arm from the company late last year. Just last Friday, that arm put the TVR name and some of it's tooling up for sale. Interested parties, apparently, include low-cost
Ford informed BMW today that it would be exercising its right to buy the Rover name from the German automaker and also announced that it will not be putting it up for sale. The Detroit automaker purchased Land Rover from BMW in 2000 and has since had the option to buy the Rover name or at least first refusal rights if BMW tried to sell the name to a third party. Well, that's exactly what BMW tried to do and had reportedly arranged a deal already with Chinese automaker Shanghai Automotive Corp. (
The UK's Financial Times is reporting that BMW has agreed to sell the Rover name to an eager Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. (SAIC), new owner of the design rights to many of the vehicles owned by MG Rover before the company dissolved due to huge debts. FT reports that the German luxury automaker will complete a deal wtih SAIC in September in which BMW will hand over the rights to the Rover name for about $1.9 million, citing sources close to the deal. BMW, however, responded to the report to
The collapse of MG Rover was an expensive affair for the British government and its people. A report published by the country's Public Accounts Committee says that the decline of MG Rover between 2000 and 2004 cost tax payers around £270 million. A £500 million pension deficit will also likely be met by the country's Pension Protection Fund, and the defunct company still owes £109 million to creditors, which they likely won't be getting.
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