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mg_zt
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I have spent a lot of time browsing this forum and have made very few postings but the one thing missing from all the analyses of the current predicament is that the Rover "brand" has little or no value in the UK against VW, B*W, or Ford for that matter. The fact that half of the cars on UK roads are built in the Czeck republic, Spain or China, is irrelevant. Its the brand and the brand essence that counts. VW made a big push to brand itself as a reliable, quality brand. Having owned a 1998 Golf TDi I would seriously disagree. However the general public bought the idea. If you consider the "quality" of VW's current offering and the insane models like the Phoeton and the huge pointless SUV, you can see where I am coming from. What they got absolutely right was that they did their homework on UK buying habits and created adverts to get us to believe the hype.

What MG Rover did wrong was NOT to have a brand essence for Rover. The business should have encapsulated what it wanted Rover to stand for and marketed the message, not the fact that the car was manufactured in Britain (although this is obviously still very important to us all). People like to think that a car is a representation of their personality but the Rover brand does nothing to identify with one. Contrast that with MG however which is marketed as a fun, brash sporty brand and hey presto, sales go up. The sale is of course for the same fundamental piece of kit.

We all chose to buy MG Rovers for different reasons but the Rover brand means nothing other than having "heritage" pretentions. This was the biggest crime in the last 5 years. If the models are good enough to sell in the 10's of thousands as they are today, there is a market out there and someone should carry the can for not identifying with it and selling more cars.
 

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What MG Rover did wrong was NOT to have a brand essence for Rover. The business should have encapsulated what it wanted Rover to stand for and marketed the message, not the fact that the car was manufactured in Britain (although this is obviously still very important to us all). People like to think that a car is a representation of their personality but the Rover brand does nothing to identify with one. Contrast that with MG however which is marketed as a fun, brash sporty brand and hey presto, sales go up. The sale is of course for the same fundamental piece of kit.
Spot On! I have just bought a ZT 190+ and it is without doubt one of the finest cars I have ever driven. The British public just seem to feed off the media at the moment and perhaps thats where MG-R failed, a bit of clever advertising and who knows what might have happened? Skoda's marketing campaign was a stroke of genius and has paid off for them.
 

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other_manufacturer
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there's a lot of truth in that. Look how sheddy brands like Sloda, and Seat have been turned around in the publics perception, despite a lack of corresponding increase in customer satisfation. A bit of clever glossy advertising, dripped away slowly over a period of time like chinese water torture can have wondrous effects on image. i mean, look at the clever ads that VAG were churning out for the 'Beautifully Crafted Passat', when in actual fact it languises in the bottom 20% of most surveys. There are lies, damned lies and VW advertising, but people overlook a whole host of shorcomings to get their wallets out when theres a sexy glossy ad in the offing.


DD
 

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rover_75
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You are totally right. Unfortunately.

Rover to me though does stand for sound engineering and 'a cut above' - the 89 200/400 and the 600 series both hit the mark as did the 60s P6. Rover owners were polite successful people, not agressive [email protected] like those who drive BMWs today.

Unlike Joe Public I don't buy the advertising - I remember when Audi was a smelly 2-stroke model from DKW, not a brand. When NSU was Germany's "vorsprung durch technik" but VW bought the remains and used its models in development to create the K70, Audi Coupe and of course the Golf - all fine VWs are they NOT.
 

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Quite right. I owned a Passat before my ZT. It was a few months old when I bought it. In the twelve months I owned it, it was the most unreliable piece of cack I've ever owned, the dealers were totally useless and arrogant. In over two years of ZT ownership, I've had nothing but pleasure.
 

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Of course you are right in what you are saying! There are a lot of people out there that are buying a image of what they want to be!

Examples:

BMW sells you "pure driving pleasure" with each car
Volvo gives you a "castle" on wheels
a Porsche makes a "made man" of you
a Volkswagen "runs and runs and runs and runs and ..."

But what image transports Rover in our days? The sales between MG and Rover cars show this clearly I think!

Even in Germany people say Rover is bankrupt ... they don't say MG Rover ... no it's "just Rover" in the eyes of German press.

So here is the chance (in my opinion): Drop the Rover name ... it has been damaged (at least for the next years). I doubt that such a thing could be repaired after such an impact.

I would keep the MG name ... sell all cars as MGs. Even so you have a better chance to "escape" the low budget corner that the Cityrover has brought Rover in.

Just my 2 Cent!
 

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You're probably right Diewaldo. Even in the UK it wouldn't be iconic enough.

As someone from Germany, what names (other than MG) are you familiar with in the British motor industry's history? Do any of them have positive associations? It is interesting to know.

Some of the names that MGR owns trademarks for are:

Marques: MG, BMC, Austin, Austin-Healey, Morris, Wolseley, Vanden Plas, Princess, Sterling, MG XPower

Models: Magnette, Magna, Montego, Montaine, Vitesse, Sprite, Midget, Minor, Streetwise, Kensington, Connoisseur, Wasp (has expired, but no-one else has claimed it)

And some others: MGR, MG-R, ST (as in Special Tuning), BMC Special Tuning Abingdon, VVC, Stepspeed
To me, Vitesse still stands out, along with Austin-Healey, but then I'm an enthusiast.
 

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Well, as a car enthusiast I am very familiar with the once glorious British car industry.

But I think that apart from names like Rolls Royce, Jaguar, Aston Martin, Bentley, Rover, Lotus, Landrover and MG the people are not very familiar with the British brands anymore.

The first 2 ones are know out of films (James Bond) or because famous people drive them.

Rolls Royce, Bentley, Rover, Landrover and MG are known because a German car maker (once) bought them.

I think it would cost loads of money to establish a "new" brand in the rest of Europe ... even if it had a certain name in the UK (such as Austin Healy etc.)

Fact is that most people don't remember these cars anymore.

Let me give you an example (from Germany):

There is a successor of C. W. Borgward that wants to built a new Borgward again. Fact is that such a thing is extremely dangerous. There is no link anymore between the old Borgward image (it has been around 30 years or more since the brand was put on a car). The younger people can't connect the name anymore to a car.

Same thing happened when Mercedes put the Maybach name on a car again. It did cost them a fortune to advertise and relaunch the brand (and might be a reason for Mercedes that they are not making money at the moment).
 

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rover_75
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Diewaldo said:
Of course you are right in what you are saying! There are a lot of people out there that are buying a image of what they want to be!

Examples:

BMW sells you "pure driving pleasure" with each car
Volvo gives you a "castle" on wheels
a Porsche makes a "made man" of you
a Volkswagen "runs and runs and runs and runs and ..."

But what image transports Rover in our days?
I think of my new 75 as an English stately home - not something I could buy as property!!

My old R8 200 was a nice English country cottage.

:hyper:
 

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Lord Minty said:
I think of my new 75 as an English stately home - not something I could buy as property!!

My old R8 200 was a nice English country cottage.

:hyper:
I guess you are the kind of car owner that has persian rugs in his car, or am I mistaken?
 
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