BBC Home
Explore the BBC
BBC News
Launch consoleBBC NEWS CHANNEL
Last Updated: Thursday, 14 April, 2005, 10:11 GMT 11:11 UK
Is there any hope left for Rover?
Rover cars leaving Longbridge plant in Birmingham
The partners and children of Rover employees have paid a visit to Downing Street to protest against job losses at the Longbridge car factory.

They handed Tony Blair a letter and called for renewed efforts to rekindle a rescue deal with a Chinese car company.

A 6.5m government loan has prevented any redundancies being made this week.

Do you think MG Rover deserves help? Are you affected by the recent events? Send us your thoughts and experiences.

The following comments reflect the balance of opinion we have received so far:

This is the best thing that can happen. Rover is dead and its products have been poor for years. The good parts of the business (Mini, Land Rover) have been cherry picked. There's nothing special or sacred about manufacturing industry: what counts in business is the ability to make a profit. Close Rover now, and avoid the "De Lorean" effect. Billions of pounds of public money has already been wasted on Rover.
John , Exeter, Devon

The Midlands cannot sustain this sort of job loss
TM, Coventry, West Midlands
Yes I think the government should loan Rover the money to continue. It's easy for those out there to say no, who do not live in this area. What about the shifts being cut at Peugeot and the closure of the Jaguar plant in Coventry and the effects that has on this area, as well as all the other cuts from large employers in the area such as Marconi? The Midlands cannot sustain this sort of job loss without it having a dire effect on our local economy.
TM, Coventry, West Midlands

Answer is simply NO! The European Car industry is far too competitive and the likes of Ford, GM are already struggling to compete with BMW, Toyota and Japanese manufacturers. As customers we are now looking for reliability and good quality and not good insurance and finance deals to buy a car. By doing this longer term Ford, GM and Rover own brand image will weaken and the Toyotas of the world will dominate. Jaguar and Land Rover need to focus on quality, reliability and comfort, or they will suffer the same plight of Rover.
Simon Singh, Coventry, UK

I drive a Rover. My husband drives a Rover. They are reliable, economical, look good, and are a decent price. What is wrong with you all? You bang on about how terrible it is, the government should intervene, the management are rubbish and so on. If more people had bought a Rover then this wouldn't have happened! You are to blame! So you think about that tonight when you drive home in your Peugeot/VW/Fiat/Toyota/Seat/Mitsubishi/BMW/Ford/Renault/Mercedes/etc etc.
Sarah Miles, Redditch, Worcs

The problem we have in this country is that we seem to be ashamed to be patriotic! GB-bashing is our national hobby! Everywhere else in Europe, the most popular makes of car bought are the ones that are manufactured by a car maker from that country! Raise the taxes on car imports, and bail the company out! These people want to work - give them a chance on the same playing field as other European countries give their car manufacturers! We proudly own an MG ZS - a fantastic car! We have always bought Rovers and MGs and want to continue to!
Catherine, UK

Since when did Honda ever own Rover? Never. It was sold to BMW by British Aerospace and then stripped of all the bits BMW wanted, ie. 4X4 technology from Land Rover and the new MINI before being dumped with an ageing model line up and no development funds. It's amazing they managed to last 5 years. And to those who say MGR produce rubbish cars that nobody wants, my 75 is the best car I've ever had (I bought VW/Audi until 2001). It will be a crying shame if this company is allowed to go under, another nail in the coffin of this once great land. And why shouldn't taxpayers' money be used to help? Far better to spend it on this than other useless causes.
Mike Jones, Leighton Buzzard, UK

Like all manufacturing in the UK, it lacks a future because of little investment in the workforce
Andy, UK

Like all manufacturing in the UK, it lacks a future because of little investment in the workforce - Tube train drivers earn much more than PhD qualified engineers, and you try getting a UK company to fund training! You reap what you sow!
Andy, UK

The fall of Rover is symptomatic of the malaise that affects this country. In any other European country, the national car maker would not be allowed to go down, it would be a matter of national pride. The story of the British car industry over the last 50 years has been one of lack of investment and incompetent management. If we are to maintain any industry in this country it's time to get the bean counters out of management and replace them with engineers, who can plan more than 5 minutes ahead.
Steve Walls, Canterbury England

Let's face it. Without huge tariff barriers all cars will be made in India or China within a decade or so. In some ways we're fortunate it's a Rover sized company failing rather than a GM or Fiat sized one. If we choose to bail Rover out as some sort of manufacturing virility symbol we should be quite clear that we can't expect to make a profit at it.
Roger, UK

What a great opportunity! The factory buildings could be converted into a huge cinema and shopping complex and still have room for a massive area to build several state of the art call centres. There could even be room left to house a museum to "Engineering in the British Midlands?. Then all those unemployed, highly skilled engineers can be re-trained as shop assistants, cinema ushers, museum guides, car park attendants, security guards and call centre agents. Or the Government can do something useful with the tax they've been taking off us for the past 8 years and set up a rescue package which will ensure the future of MG and keep the high skill engineering workforce we need for the future.
Trevor, Colchester, UK

It's sickening to see people trying to turn this into an electoral issue. None of the other parties have said they would have done anything more. The Government did everything they could within the law but neither they nor any other party could or would have signed a blank cheque for Rover.
Graham, UK

Who is going to employ them if industry and manufacturing is allowed to wither
Tony Osgerby, Barton On Humber, England
Yes - What is the difference between spending taxpayers money on Rover and spending millions to create thousands of public sector jobs that will never add to the national wealth? We are told that we need to produce more engineers and scientists, yet who is going to employ them if industry and manufacturing is allowed to wither - not the beloved service sector.
Tony Osgerby, Barton On Humber, England

If it were a company that produced coal or some products other than cars would the government do anything? I don't think so.
Georges Philips, London

Wouldn't it have been logical five years ago when all this started brewing, after BMWs sale of Rover, for the government to lean on police forces and other government agencies to purchase Rover cars? I'm sure there might well be EU competition laws against it but the French government manage to constantly be strong supports of Peugeot, Renault and Citroen.
Mark Nielsen, Bristol

Tony Blair says he's going to "roll up his sleeves" and find a buyer for Rover, who's going to believe him? If he's serious perhaps he'll tell us how many Rover cars have been bought by government departments? Why doesn't he drive one himself? How many have been bought by the Labour Party for its own use? I think we already know the answers to those questions!
David Scott, Walton-on-Thames UK

Rover failed because it could not be economic or innovative
Ben, UK
It is sad to see another legacy go, but inevitably, no firm can escape the economics of the situation. Let's be clear on the issue - Rover failed because it could not be economic or innovative. A lesson for all manufacturing companies competing on a global stage.
Ben, UK

The UK is not becoming a 'service economy'. All our resources are currently diverted into, ever expanding, civil service empires. That's OK because we can pretend that it has something to do with 'public services'. If both manufacturing and services go to the wall who cares until the tax revenue runs out.
B Essada, London, UK

It's a scandal to see these 6000 jobs go and it will have a huge impact on the local economy. I guess it's no surprise to see our (tax payers) money used for fly-by-night foreign investors (BMW, Siemens) but when it comes to maintaining jobs and supporting UK companies and workers, money is sadly lacking. I would rather we supported Rover and maintained 6000 jobs and the input to the economy they have than the alternative. My support goes to the workers and Rover and to those who work supporting Rover.
Caroline, Wolverhampton

Everything possible must be done to save Rover, British manufacturing is on its knees and to lose the last major British motor producer will be the death knell for manufacturing in the UK.
Richard, Stockport

To quote Monty Python: "Look, matey, I know a dead parrot when I see one, and I'm looking at one right now."
Colin, San Jose, Costa Rica

The collapse of Rover can also be attributed to Joe Public
DW, Chicago USA (UK Expat)
The collapse of Rover can also be attributed to Joe Public. Instead of blaming politicians and management, if you had been bothered about maintaining British manufacturing you would have all bought British, instead of buying cheaper foreign imports!
DW, Chicago USA (UK Expat)

Rover has been producing uncompetitive ageing products, and the (British) car buying public will not buy on patriotic grounds alone.
R Wilcock, London

Instead of being first in the queue to announce Rover's demise (which seems to have been premature) Patricia Hewitt and the rest of her sorry government should do something about the red tape and additional taxation that cripples British industries. The so-called "greatest chancellor" should look in the mirror to see what part his meddling and tax raising has had in this affair.
John, UK

I own a BMW, but recently rented a Rover for a business trip. Sorry guys - there is no comparison - the BM beat it in every department. The government propping up Rover will only encourage them to continue to build a shoddy product, as will the silly suggestions of imposing import taxes on foreign cars. Make what people want and you'll have jobs for life.
Mike, Ipswich

The media are flat wrong about the nation not caring about this motor manufacturer
Colin Heesom, RoyalTunbridge Wells
MG Rover is as much a British institution as the BBC. The media are flat wrong about the nation not caring about this motor manufacturer. Many who don't even own MGs or Rovers care about its place in British industry and culture. Over 100 MG and Rover owners converged on Longbridge today, and I was among them.
Colin Heesom, Royal Tunbridge Wells

I can see Rover from my house. How long will it be before there's an Ikea, Tesco and Sainsburys on the land? The workers will find jobs for sure, but they'll only be on half of what they're on now. They broke their backs under many different owners, now they're all done for.
Liam, Birmingham

For the fourth largest economy in the world to find itself without a volume car manufacturer is beyond belief.
Justin Ellis-Yorke, Leicester

I think that we should give as much help as we can to help save the last of the great British car industry. You look at it now: 6,000 jobs could go - but what about the small firms who supplied MG Rover with parts? I think the government should help out Rover. They make great cars and they just need some help to show the rest of the motor industry what they're really capable of.
Marc Briston, Lytham, St Annes

Rover isn't worth saving. They have been making poor quality cars for decades and haven't really moved on from the dark old days of British Leyland. The old dinosaur should be allowed to die in peace.
J H, London, UK

The local economy would be devastated if the plant were to close
Russell, Birmingham
Living only a couple of miles from the Longbridge plant, the local economy would be devastated if the plant were to close.
Russell, Birmingham

It seems a little strange that the crisis surrounding 6,000 jobs at Rover is attracting government assistance and a huge amount of media interest. Tens of thousands of jobs from the financial/service sector have been shipped off to other countries with cheap labour - and with no reaction at all. Double standards anyone?
Chris, Norfolk, UK

I wonder if MG Rover were situated in London people would still be so happy to see it, and all the jobs, go?
Stephen Wilkes, Birmingham

The British people should be ashamed for their lack of support for Rover. Nobody wants to see the end of the British car industry but no one wants to put their money where their mouths are. It stuns me when I see the BMW drivers with their St Georges flags! Selective patriotism? For once why don't we get behind our own like they do in the rest of Europe and show a bit of support?
Anne, Warwick

'Stop pumping money into a sinking ship' cry the arrogant unattached of the North & South. But who will pick up the tax bill for MG Rover's lost export earnings and employee tax contributions?
James, Birmingham

In the 1970s, the government was propping up British Leyland to the tune of 1m every day. We should remember that people spend money and that if the unions had not demanded higher wages in their "glory years", this country's manufacturing base would not be in its present state.
Dave Owens, Chesterfield

The Longbridge workers are lucky to be surrounded by Labour marginal seats. If they were safe Conservative seats, the government wouldn't care.
Mike, Brighton

Why should the government be expected to bail out Rover?
Adam, Redditch
Why should the government be expected to bail out Rover? If my company found itself in difficulties and rang Gordon Brown for cash, I'm sure we would be laughed at - why is this different?
Adam, Redditch

I work in the pottery industry. We are suffering but no one is helping this industry as it dies!!
Janet, Staffordshire

British taxpayers' money well spent. This company is well known worldwide and with some management tweaking it can become a power house in the world.
Dwayne Chastain, West Jefferson, Ohio

Britain is under pressure from the US to oppose lifting the EU arms embargo against China. This is the real reason why the deal between MG Rover with SAIC has failed. The friendship with the US is an expensive one and likely to cost us more jobs in the future when China takes its business elsewhere.
Wah, UK

People are missing the point that this is a loan in order to complete a deal with SAIC, and not a subsidy. With the emerging Chinese market, SAIC would be in a position to ensure high sales and, more importantly, develop new models. I have no doubt that if the SAIC deal went ahead, then within ten years, Rover would be a financially sound, mass manufacturing car company.
Geraint Williams, Chester

The only time and money the UK government should provide is for re-training the workforce
Simon Woodley, UK
The only time and money the UK government should provide is for re-training the workforce. The adults are old enough to look after themselves and get another job. The workers must have seen the writing on the wall, it has been there for years.
Simon Woodley, UK

One interesting angle that probably not many have thought about is that is it not possible that the Chinese are using the MG Rover deal as a means to get the UK to change its opposition to lifting the EU Arms Embargo on China? France and Germany are in favour of selling arms, whilst the UK is opposed (for the moment at least). China can exploit the current talks over Rover in a fairly effective way in the middle of the UK election. Remember that Chinese companies are all run under the watchful gaze of the CCP in Beijing.
Malcolm Davis, Baulking, United Kingdom

If Rover is saved to continue to produce cars that few people want to buy, is the government going to give the cars away that are subsequently produced or insist that the National Lottery pays for them?
Colin, Kidderminster

All UK industries are under massive pressure to reduce operating costs, and increase efficiency of doing business. My personal opinion is that Rover just did not react as rapidly as they should have, plan ahead far enough and these things won't come as such a shock. Excuses that this is a result of the UK being an expensive place to do business hold no merit with me. Everyone needs to be efficient in this highly competitive world.
Paul Lewis, Newbury, Berkshire

This business has been in the death throes for 30 years
David Parker, Leyland
In its various guises, British Motor Corporation, British Leyland, Austin Rover and Rover MG, this business has been in the death throes for 30 years. In a globalised market it cannot compete and the UK market is too small to sustain it. The demise is long expected, yet still tragic.
David Parker, Leyland, UK

The current crisis at MG/Rover just typifies the fate of engineering in this country. How can France, Germany and Spain have active car manufacturers, and yet the last remaining mass market car maker in Britain is left to wither on the vine? Perhaps British car making will go the same way as British shipbuilding - another nail in the coffin of this country's pride.
Phil, Manchester

We are all responsible for the demise of Rover. In France most people buy French cars, but how many of us have bought British cars over the years?
Nick James, Nottingham

The number one consideration in this issue is who will buy Rover cars? If you cannot convince enough people to buy them instead of imported cars then you may as well throw the money down the drain now.
Mark Shannon, London

This is a sad day for the people of the West Midlands and blows the cover off the so-called New Labour economic miracle. Real jobs are being lost whilst Tony and Gordon pretend otherwise.
Craig, Bromsgrove

What will all those people do who have been rushing to buy foreign cars when their jobs also disappear in the name of economics, profits and overseas outsourcing?
Driven to distraction

The marque is steeped in heritage and history
Lucy Butter, Barrowford, Lancs
I feel the demise of MG Rover is due to a serious lack of dynamic PR and marketing. Take the MG - great street cred and many, many more of them should have been sold, but what has been done to make people 'want that car'? The marque is steeped in heritage and history and has a long association with being 'sporty' but little has been done to promote the brand in this way. And the other Rover marques? Where are they? Why should we buy them? Also Rover showrooms - far from exciting and some are starting to look a little tatty round the edges. Just look at the way BMW promoted the Mini for example - their sales figures have grown well beyond predictions. If the company is to be saved by government money then it needs a proper and dedicated marketing package, but is it now too little too late?
Lucy Butter, Barrowford, Lancs, UK

Nationalise it, then invest in new alternative fuel or hybrid models as a showcase. Then sell it. Lots of benefits, and challenges. But cut out the fat cat salaries!
Simon Mallett, Maidstone

Rover have been in trouble ever since 2000 when they were bought for 10. I think it's about time it was over. I don't think the Government should be throwing money at the problem.
Gavan Sewell, Hull

I'm just wondering what we'll all be doing in this country in, say, 25 years' time. We seem to be in a "post" economy. Post industrial, certainly, but also post-service (call-centres outsourced to India), post-manufacturing (China), post-knowledge-based (Eastern Europe). There's surely a limit on the number of management consultants and supermarket employees which one country can sustain, and in a global economy, it's questionable how exportable such commodities are. I just worry that in a few short years we will be in the precarious position of having lost not only the ability to produce anything tangible, but also the knowledge of where to begin.
Bob, Stirling, UK

It is such a shame that one of the world's oldest and prestigious car manufacturer is struggling for survival
Saqib M Khan, London
As an accountant, I know the fact that a company, big or small, is viable as long it can control its cash flow and stop unnecessary expenditure. The car firm would appear to have been in the hands of incapable managers who failed to see its doom because they were wearing blindfolds. It is such a shame that one of the world's oldest and prestigious car manufacturer is struggling for survival when Rover is still a very popular car around the world. I was a very proud owner of my Rover in the 60s'.
Saqib M Khan, London, UK

It will be very sad to see them go. However, they have been a failing business for many years. There is only so much bailing out that the government can do.
Julie Legge, Wantage, England

Where is the management in this fiasco? Surely they should be leading. We continue to hear about the government and unions but what about the directors. Who actually owns this company? Public funds available - just like that!! What is waiting to be uncovered?
Alan, North Lincs

It's really horrible. A lot of business people just seem to see it as "6,000 people will lose their jobs". Like it is just a small amount? They don't seem to understand that each person comes with a house a life, and probably a family. Each individual will be dearly affected.
Bekah Atkins, Birmingham, UK

Is there anybody in this government with the guts to really show some faith in our OWN workforce?
Mark Collins, Reigate, Surrey
Of course Rover should be saved! We were once the workshop of the world, now we've become a glorified call centre nation, happy to screw together other countries' products! Let's face it, employment decisions are mostly made for the UK in the boardrooms of the US or Japan. Let's stand up for ourselves and save our last car maker. Is there anybody in this government with the guts to really show some faith in our OWN workforce and help them?
Mark Collins, Reigate, Surrey, UK

The 40 million support package for MG Rover suppliers is noted, but has there been any support package for the dealer network who have pledged their future with MG Rover and are now left with stock that nobody is interested in, besides all monies outstanding from MG Rover.
Maurice Nicol, Peterhead, Scotland

Been a Rover driver for years. Fantastic cars, must be saved. Come on people get behind them.
Robina Brown, Ayr, Scotland

It is extremely sad that Rover should go into receivership, but governments cannot prop up every company that goes to the wall. We should learn the lessons of the 1970s that only by becoming competitive can British businesses survive in the long run - they cannot subsist on government handouts.
Alex, UK

It's sad to see companies fold like this especially when so many people are involved in a single area but can we try and get this into perspective? I've just been made redundant along with 80 of my colleagues, yet there is not even a flicker in the local press never mind national news. People are made redundant every day all over the country, they go and find other jobs.
Kevin, Liverpool, UK

What is disturbing is that the majority of people are quite happy to see yet another British institution go down the pan
GOH, West Midlands
What is disturbing is that the majority of people are quite happy to see yet another British institution go down the pan, and with it the livelihoods of thousands of hard working taxpayers. This demonstrates in miniature the problem with the country at large; a general lack of confidence and patriotism. Deeply worrying for the future.
GOH, Droitwich Spa, West Midlands

An estimated 1 million jobs in manufacturing have been lost since the inception of New Labour in 1997. In the past three decades nearly all of our manufacturing base has been decimated. In the meantime, we are swiftly becoming a nation of call centre operatives and even these jobs are relocating East. People should be disgusted by the way this whole episode has been handled by the government and media alike. With the potential loss of 6,000 jobs at Rover and a further 18,000 in related industries, this government should feel ashamed. It is a sad, sad day for Britain.
Mark Harvey, London

Why are so many contributors apathetic towards the plight of the real victims in this? The Rover workforce. Are we all really so brainwashed by Labour spin that we don't think this could still happen to any one of us. Most of us exist on a working capital that would see us homeless in six months, were it not for government intervention without which the impoverished would be far more visible. Or should we just stop 'wasting' government money on welfare too?
Robb, Thame, UK

I'm a long-time MG enthusiast and to see MG's future uncertain again is a worry. They need to kill the Rover brand as it's dragging MG down with it and sell MG to a company who'll bring out the best in it. I've heard rumours that Porsche are interested. That would be fantastic.
Richard Ferguson, Chesterfield, Derbyshire

I'm considered an anglophile and I strongly feel that the British government and people should not give up MG Rover
Terence Lim, Singapore
I'm considered an anglophile and I strongly feel that the British government and people should not give up MG Rover. I've been in the automotive industry for eight years and all started because my dad had a Rover 820i. Let the MG Rover mark be the new commanding heights of the British economy. The government's investment in the revival of this English brand shall unite the whole kingdom. Why give up when others such as the Asians are trying to create their own?
Terence Lim, Singapore

Last year, 6,000 workers at MG Rover produced just 16.3 cars per year for each of the firm's employees. At the Japanese-owned Nissan factory in Sunderland, 1,000 workers produced 320 cars per employee each year.
Nick, Guildford

I don't see the directors of MG Rover rushing to put up their own money to save the business, so why should the government bale them out? I suspect that the directors will come out of this far richer than when they started.
Mark J, Stafford, UK

France has propped up its car industry for years - as a result Citroen, Peugeot and Renault are doing very well now. An important factor is that all government vehicles are French. If we had done the same Rover would not be in this position now.
Bob, UK

With competitive tenders for vehicles to supply emergency services being adopted in this country and across Europe how come the UK is the only country that has a national manufacturer that does not supply its own emergency services? Have you ever seen anything other than a French car being used by French police? The same for Germany , Spain and Italy. Too little support for too many years has taken its toll. All I would have liked to see is a level playing field.
John Warner, Chelmsford, Essex

There is no point letting a productive and healthy company die just because it is in a difficult situation, especially when so many jobs are on the line. The government should help MG Rover seal the deal with the Chinese, but in return they should demand some stake in how the company is run to prevent similar problems in the future.
Dave S, Strasbourg, France

It is fitting that UK owned volume car production should eventually fail under a Labour government. It was a series of Labour governments that permitted, even encouraged, non competitive work practices and pay rates. Further, from the time of Harold Wilson, Labour persisted, at the tax payers' expense, in refusing to accept the non viability of Rover and its predecessor companies.
Lindsay Allen, Dulwich, UK

They are failing because they made bad cars, not having produced a good model since the Morris Minor
Bill, Lanarkshire
They are failing because they made bad cars, not having produced a good model since the Morris Minor. To survive you have to produce a good product which the customers want. Rover do not.
Bill, Lanarkshire, Scotland

It's not surprising that Rover are in trouble if they need 6.5 million pounds to pay the weekly wage for 6000 workers!
JK, Prenton Wirral

Maybe if we were as patriotic as most other countries in the world Rover would not be the LAST British car maker going to the wall.
Kevin, Wigan

Your cars are classy. If you marketed them in the US you would do wonders. Please, check out this market share.
D Erickson, San Antonio, Texas

If, we as a nation can help 250,000 asylum seekers with financial assistance, why can't the government help Rover?
Mark, Dudley

I intended to buy a Rover 75 this summer, and I still will buy one if I get the chance. We should support British industry. I have heard a number of people talking about British goods in the last few days, and passing comments about the poor quality of those goods, but the truth is British-made cars are every bit as good as the foreign models. It is part of the British mentality to drag the country down. It is time to stand up and support our country, otherwise we have no future.
John Booth, London

I feel sorry for the workers who will be encouraged by a little money and the right noises from the government until after the election when they will be dropped like a hot brick.
Ron Milligan, Gosport, England

What MG Rover needs is someone who can bring alive pride in Britain and make us proud of what we manufacture again
John Jones, England
What MG Rover needs is someone who can bring alive pride in Britain and make us proud of what we manufacture again. The manufacturing base is vital to the economy of the country and Rover contributes a huge amount to the finances of the country. Where is Richard Branson when you need him?
John Jones, England

I am very sorry for all those who work there but sadly Rover hasn't really made a decent car since the 1970s. Add to that the fact that firms like Nissan make a higher percentage of their vehicle in the UK than Rover does and one wonders if Rover really is a UK car maker?
Jenny Day, Saltash, UK

The MG Rover marque was a symbol of engineering excellence - and it still could be. The worst mistake Rover made was to ditch the agreement with Honda and allow Land Rover to go to Ford. They should make every effort to try to re-kindle the relationship with Honda - or any other quality marque. The current cars are well made and good value. If the British (including the government) had a more chauvinistic approach to home grown industry, the car industry would still be one of the best in the world. As has already been pointed out, the French would not allow such a thing to happen - and I doubt if the Germans would either.
Leslie Ayre, Seremban, Malaysia

If you sell rubbish products you will eventually go under. It is just a fact of life. Some of the first cars I owned were the Rover 3-litre, the Rover 2000, 2000TC and the Rover V8. However for the last 10-20 years I have not wanted a Rover and have not owned one. There are much better cars that have been produced in Britain; more reliable, more long lasting yet cheaper to buy and maintain. So is there any hope for Rover? I am afraid not, even if we pour many more millions into this bottomless hole the end will be the same. What a terrible shame and waste for such an inevitable sad end!
Stewart Stevenson, Luton UK

The entire British auto trade needs a major shake up
Andrew Milner, Yokohama, Japan
It's hardly surprising MG-Rover are going to the wall when the entire British auto trade needs a major shake up. The cost of using a car in the UK is far too expensive. The main dealer segment conspires to blackmail drivers over warranty and service history. Dealers do their best to evade warranty responsibility, and charge like a wounded rhino for servicing and repair. Ask yourselves how grey imports from Japan can undercut the main dealer offered vehicle with a better spec., better condition product, after paying a UK import tax of 30%. No brainer: Cars in UK are over priced.
Andrew Milner, Yokohama, Japan

Coming from Birmingham I have had friends work for Rover over the years and it would be sad to see the negative effect on the community. But the fact remains that in this International market there are foreign cars which are of far better quality with more efficient engines. If the Govt bails Rover again it will be political (most probably due to the election). Rover will inevitably be in this situation again. Sadly it's time to call it quits and move on.
Pete, Birmingham

I think that Rover is trying to use the general election to gain negative publicity for the government if they fail to help. This stance should be unacceptable and the general public should remember that rover is a company like any other and its mismanagement has nothing to do with the government. I do not see why this should be an election issue in the local area, the people should realise that the bosses of the company are the sole cause of the company's problems and that many people up and down the country lose their jobs because of such poor management.
Allan Marshall, East Kilbride, Scotland

It's a lame dog. It angers me that the directors have made over 40m in benefits, whilst workers will be laid off. Another sad day.
Steve Watson, Edinburgh, UK

To everyone that says UK govt should not help Rover and move to a service economy. None of the other five industrialised economies would let this happen, they all have a healthy manufacturing industry. If you follow this premise then the inefficient farming industry should of had all their subsidies stripped from them years ago.
Matt, Sydney, Australia (formerly from Birmingham)

Rover's failure can be put down to, not unions, but the usual scourge of British bad management. Yes, those same managers who try to justify their salaries (often double that of equivalent firms in Europe like BMW) by consistently claiming to be top calibre people. What a joke!
Simon Watkins, Cardiff, Wales, UK

As an American, I have seen the British car industry experience the indignity of foreign ownership of her iconic brands over the past years, but that should not take away from the achievements that have been made. Jaguar and Land Rover/Range Rover do have their difficult currency issues and extremely tough competition to overcome when importing into the United States. Ten years ago no one in the US even knew what a Range Rover was. But today, few people could deny the incredible reputation of the Range Rover as the ultimate SUV (here in the land of SUVs).

Twenty years ago Jaguar was a joke in the US. Today, the Jaguar brand is one of the definitive performance luxury vehicles available in the US or anywhere. The Mini was a brand not seen in the US in over 30 years and now has been an overnight success with its new incarnation. In the States, it is a car loved by the automotive critics and car buying public both. The point is, that with proper management the UK car industry can be a world player.
Matthew, Los Angeles, California

I have been a loyal supporter of MG Rover for years. My new MG TF is great fun but flawed. The quality is awful and it should have been replaced years ago! The MG badge deserves better. Let's hope that the MG name will be bought out and the name will live on. MG should become similar to Lotus or TVR, making great British sports cars, but in higher volumes.
Mark Kidd, Salfords, Surrey

Rover's present predicament can be traced back to its decision to terminate its joint venture with Honda in favour of BMW some years ago. Under Honda, Rover was recovering somewhat and sales of Rover cars were doing fairly well in Singapore. Rover had traded a partner who had a long term commitment (Honda) with one who did not (BMW).
James Leong, Singapore

This hole in the economy will go on year after year
JK, London
If MG Rover didn't exist a year ago, the 119,000+ people who bought MG/Rovers would have had to buy French, German, Italian, American, Japanese cars - on my calculations depriving the UK economy of around 600 million. This hole in the economy will go on year after year as long as people buy cars! That's before you calculate the cost of paying out benefits. For goodness sake if there is any way to keep them going we should do so.
JK, London

It's really a question of "survival of the fittest" and "moulding yourself with changing times". Detroit in US awaits the same fate (as of Rovers) as it could never adopt itself to building compact, more economical cars instead of the traditional American huge, gas guzzling monsters. Its hard to believe that you can sell the same product or idea for decades unless you tune in to changing world around.
Rakesh, London, UK

As a truck driver, I waited 2 hours to get unloaded at Longbridge. Nobody wanted to know. They wonder why they're losing their jobs!
Adrian Brackley, Cheshire

To all those suggesting we should "let Rover go" because we're "becoming a services economy", I have this to tell you: the UK servicing jobs are rapidly moving to India and China (call centres, IT etc), soon we'll all be shelf stackers.
SP, Reading

Can you believe this has happened under a socialist government?
Philip, London, England
Can you believe this has happened under a socialist government? Blair and his colleagues should be ashamed. Wouldn't surprise me if it lost them the election.
Philip, London, England

I thinks its over for MG Rover, their cars were good, they did all they could, but just can't compete with the other makes.
Brendan Street, Bridlington

Rover are in the position they are in because they make rubbish cars and always have done. They have themselves to blame, whilst other companies like VW etc have been developing new models, Rover seems to have chucked all their left over spare parts together to make theirs. A shoddy company with a shoddy attitude towards business and failing deservedly.
Mike, St Ives, Cornwall

Why does the government want to prop up a private industry that has failed to be competitive in a global market? There are dozens of other worthy causes for monetary benefits that haven't been blighted by years of union blight?
Peter, Manchester

It's cheaper to keep 6,000 jobs and other jobs in supply industries than us paying them out-of-work benefits
Mark Grimes, Sunderland, UK
It would be a shame to see MG Rover cease to exist! It's a British company and our government should do whatever it can to keep it open - it's cheaper to keep 6,000 jobs and other jobs in supply industries than us paying them out-of-work benefits! French government continues to bail out engineering firm Alstom just to keep it running, so why can't we? If Alstom was a UK company it would have been closed years ago!
Mark Grimes, Sunderland, UK

MG-Rover could have a very bright future but it need investment to bring models up to date, it has one of the most loyal customer bases around and if there was a more modern line up you watch more customers flood in, if the MG side can increase sales with models that are no newer than their Rover counterparts then it shows that the Rover line up just need sexed up a bit!
Gary Maxtone, Fort William, Scotland

We must be able to save something even if its only the MG badge, sales are up and one of a few manufactures that is up on sales from last year
Tom Heard, Enfield England

Call me a cynic, I really don't mind, but I'm just waiting for "Super Tony" to pull the rabbit out of the hat at the eleventh hour and save the West Midlands - but I still won't vote for him.
Dave Hamilton, Kinghorn, Fife

I feel sympathy for the British people but cannot understand why it accepts everything from the market or the government. Show that you are a people, fight for your rights, this is your right not to accept everything and don't let anyone to convince you of the opposite.
Olivier Sauveur, Paris, France

There is hope for the Rover as long as the politicians and unions keep out of it
Chandru Narayan, USA
Kill the union and fish out Rover from its deathbed. Build a Rover based on a successful Japanese engine and get the gas mileage, dependability up in the highest numbers. There is hope for the Rover as long as the politicians and unions keep out of it.
Chandru Narayan, USA

Peugeot, Ford, Nissan to name but a few produce cars quite happily in this country. Why can't Rover? Maybe they are just building the wrong cars. Should shut down Longbridge, buy that Daewoo Factory for sale in Poland and just build MGs. Bet that would be profitable.
Ben Shepherd, Farnham, Surrey

I work in the motor trade and have experience of Rover, and MG. They are poorly built, drive exceptionally badly and do nothing to excite. This is the reason that people are not buying British. How can anyone justify spending hard earned money on a product that simply does not live up to any standards and does not in any way represent 'value.' Shut Rover down, don't give my tax money to a what appears to a bunch of jokers.
Josh, Shropshire UK

I am (was) an MG Rover employee and feel the government has let us down, not financially, but by not "waving the flag" and using Rover 75s, which are excellent cars, for ministerial duties. They should also have encouraged police authorities to do the same with the 25 and 45 models. There is no "feel good factor" in this area of the world.
Alan Coley, Longbridge, Birmingham

I am proud to drive a British car and I hope MG Rover survives this turmoil
George, London
I bought my MG TF two and a half years ago and I still love it. It may not be the highest quality build - but then it wasn't exactly a high price for that type of car. I am proud to drive a British car and I hope MG Rover survives this turmoil and continues to be a part of British motoring history.
George, London

When I bought an MG TF six months ago I thought I was doing a good thing buying British, but since owning the car I realise why I never bought one in the past - great looks, but the build quality is poor. It's no wonder MG Rover is in administration. Give me another German car any day.
David, Wales

The UK is moving away from hardcore engineering and becoming a service industry. This is just the natural progress of economic development and the sooner Rover realises this and stops producing out-dated 20th century cars the better! Time to move on - get over it!
James O'Brian, Glasgow, UK

I suppose Friday was "a good day to bury Rover"
Phil, Oxford

The only justifiable reason for injecting cash into Rover is to safeguard the jobs of the workers, who will in all likelihood have nowhere to take their skills and experience should Rover close. My heart goes out to them and their families.
Nick Payne, Alcester

It is also a great concern for people like me who have recently purchased a car from an MG Rover Phoenix Garage. What's going to happen to our warranty and servicing sold with our vehicles? Our car still has work to be serviced but the garage can't do it as they've had their accounts frozen!
K McCombie, Redditch

It's very easy for people from outside the Birmingham area to say the government should let Rover die. If this was happening on your doorstep you'd want the whole country out supporting you and trying to make it work! I'm glad that Labour is finally returning to their socialist roots and actually getting stuck into some dealings with industry. It was the markets that destroyed this company, why on earth would they be the best people to save it?
Thomas, Birmingham

Taxpayers' money shouldn't be spent on trying to help out a company that hasn't moved with the times
Michael, Dublin
I don't believe that the government should be bailing this company out to the tune of 6.5million! I sympathise with the employees, but taxpayers' money shouldn't be spent on trying to help out a company that hasn't moved with the times.
Michael, Dublin

Let Rover go! It really is the 'dog' of the UK industry, and needs to be put down! Sorry to all the workers at Longbridge, but the site would serve a better purpose as landfill or low cost housing. I, for one would rather employ a few more police or nurses than aid an ailing plant which makes cars at a loss, and won't ever make a profit.
Ian, London

As Maggie Thatcher once said "You can't buck the market". Global competition means that manufacturing anything in this country is becoming less and less economically viable - long term we will be become a purely service economy. What I think is disgraceful is that the board of this failed company have lined their own pockets whilst the taxpayer will pick up the tab for the workforce's pensions.
Matt Munro, Bristol

I wonder if the 40m aid package would be available if there wasn't a general election in less than a month? I feel for the workers as I was made redundant at the end of January. I've seen my income fall from over 50 to job seekers' allowance. Where is my aid package from the Government?
MH, Wiltshire

France wouldn't let this happen or Germany. Where has our heritage gone?
Justin, West Sussex
The government should have a buy British policy for the public sector or provide a loan in the form of a sizable order to show the public that they have faith in this company. SUVs have provided a major part in the car marketplace and BMW restricted MG-Rover from building one! People are afraid to buy Rovers because of the uncertainty of the company and the effect on second hand values. We never back our own and the media just stirs for a good story! France wouldn't let this happen or Germany. Where has our heritage gone?
Justin, West Sussex

Every attempt should be made to save our remaining car industry
Lorretta Jones, Herefordshire
As the proud and very satisfied owner of a Rover 25 I am tired of hearing criticism about the best range of cars MG Rover has manufactured for years, but this isn't about whether or not I like my car, it is about the impact on the economy of losing another aspect of British industry. We are not just talking about MG Rover itself, we are talking about all the companies, all over the UK who supply them and all the dealerships and their staff, this can only add to impact of losing MG Rover. Losing MG Rover could impact on a lot of us, every attempt should be made to save our remaining car industry. It is not only Birmingham which is likely to be affected by the closure.
Lorretta Jones, Leominster, Herefordshire

Whatever happens to MG Rover it is clear that one group will benefit either way. The management, namely the Directors have to be held more accountable for the present situation. The deficit in the pension fund needs to be thoroughly investigated.
Riz Mirza, London

The workforce at Longbridge have agreed to everything asked of them by successive managements. They are dedicated to making cars and I still remember grown men asking me in tears during the last episode five years ago, what more can they do? The cars they are now making are equal to the best quality in the business even though they are working in antiquated conditions. I cannot imagine the French or Italian governments letting Renault or Fiat go to the wall, whatever the EU rules say. I say those people deserve better and they certainly deserve the chance to show us what they can do without the handicap of poor management and under funding which they have suffered for the past thirty years or more.
Vincent Hammersley, Coventry England

Whilst all this is a shame, the problem would not exist if the market wanted/liked Rover cars. The range is poor with little or no changes over recent years. Frankly, I thought that the re-brand to MG on the Rover 25, 45 and 65 was embarrassing. A Championship outfit struggling to compete in the Premiership!
Jim Roberts, Birmingham, UK

I worked for Rover for 22 years until 1991. The workers of this once great company were always very hardworking, loyal and true. They have all for many years been atrociously badly let down by intransigent unions in the 1970s and early 1980s, greedy and self serving management from the 70s through until now and the actions of big companies seemingly only intent on asset stripping (BAE & BMW are just 2 that come to mind). Why now not let the workers decide their own future without the interference of the greedy and amazingly self serving directors, whose salaries and pensions are a major scandal?
Bob Cope, Minehead, UK


News Front Page | World | UK | England | Northern Ireland | Scotland | Wales | Politics
Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health | Education
Have Your Say | Magazine | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific