there not that unreliable actually, its more they had a run of bad parts with a run of sheer incompatance in relation to cooling system.
The reason why we have so many K series, is easy, go back to 1990 and you find me a stock 1.4 engine that gives you 110+bhp. Even look for an all alloy engine? its not going to happen the only one around is the k series. For all of you who dont understand or dont like efi then jump ship now. But if i have a little sports car like a elise for example and i want to take it to the shops ocationally i dont want peaky high revs with mid range torque loss. If im going to a track day then its another matter. So you take your laptop along to the track day and plug it in, takes 5 mins to load the new map and your sorted. when youwant to drive home same process in reverse. just like want to do a hill climb then you can chnge it again.
well lets look at what these thing mainlyover heat in, bearing in mind all engines if stood still long enough will. well we have the freelander, how oftern do you see them stuck in traffic and when was the last time you 1 off road.
then we have the mg, same old problems, mid engined cooling systems are the bane of many a engineers life.
Now the rover range, it has problem, and im not just talking about the engines in this case. how do you get the power and the cooling? well its expensive and not just that its difficult to do for typical M6 or M25 driving, stop start stationary. second gear is the holy grail. Who needs a gym when you got a Z28 with a manual box in traffic, this is the point where i wish i hadnt removed the power steering its like driving a 1950's dumper truck with a 10" steering wheel.
tale for another day.
I personally like the K series, it isnt the top of the tree now, but it served us in motorsport well for 10 years. now there are other engines around, the duratec for example looks like a intersting propsition, especially as it will mate to a MT75/ type 9 gearbox.
there is also the toyota and honda engines which are promising but rear wheel drive looks challenging to achive with out stripping one sports car to create another.
If in 1998 you can find me an engine that i can cheeply mate to a cheap RWD Gearbox, and get 100bhp/ litre with less than £1000, and offers all this at under 45kg/ 100 horses then please do. But K series anyday of the week.
Zetec i here you cry well you try geting a 1.8 or 2litre Zetec to thosepower levels and you will be in the 4-6k mark.
BTW, if you fit a race spec gasket it will be 3 times the price but last the life of the car, and when you are talking £250 labour then whats £80.
Originally Posted by Cliffy
Yes, that's very true. Here's a prime example, Rover's K-Series engine, all of them, from 1.4litre - 2.0litre were probably the most unreliable engine ever. The really strange thing is, that these engines were one of the most comonly used units, I mean, they were used in all Rover branded cars from the early '90's through to the present day. They were used in the Rover 200 - 800 series and all new models for exampl, the Rover 25 - 75, Land Rover Freelander, Lotus Elise (Euro spec only), Lotus or Caterham7's and some Aerial Atom's..oh, and Westfields too. There were probably loads more, I just cant think right now. Anyway, my point is, that these engines are sooo unreliable, It has been known to suffer head gasket problems from as early on as 10,000 miles and over heating is also a big issue (often the reason, but not always, for head gasket failer). So, that's Rovers for ya (and also why I hate them lol). TVR are also very unreliable cars