[ROVERNET - UK] 3500S specs for USA and Canada

Glen Wilson rovercar at comcast.net
Sat Mar 29 16:55:56 GMT 2008


In the USA, they had to have those under-bumper turn indicators to be 
legal. That's the only reason they were put there in the first place. 
The TC's had them too, at least in the 1969 brochure.  Down here, it 
would have been illegal to sell  them without those lights. Did Canada 
get a hodge-podge of parts because they had less specific laws than the 
United States? I can't say from down here, but we were all NADA. Was 
there a specific NADA wiring harness, or was there just one P6 harness 
with extra wires? Seems like some rewiring would be involved in deleting 
the under bumper lights.

The bumpers of a 3500S are unique to the 3500S and so are the front 
wings to match them. If a 3500S was shipped with non-standard front 
bumpers, they would have to have been 2000TC bumpers which would mean 
the car had 2000TC front wings, as well. How could the factory send out 
a car like that?

The brochure lists the tinted glass as a separate option. I suppose 
people without AC might also want tinted glass. It may or may not have 
been mandatory with AC, but the brochure doesn't say it was.

What exactly do you mean about the steering wheel stalks and finishing 
trims in the boot?  You have seen  some 3500S's with foot dimmer 
switches and others with stalk dimmer switches. The 1969 2000TC manual 
says this:  ""The directional indicators and horn are on the right side, 
the headlight flasher control on a stem to the left. The latter can be 
used to flash the high beams are either off or on low beam. The usual 
floor dimmer switch is also provided for changes of high and low beam."  
The left hand stalk could flash the high beams, but not switch them into 
an "on" mode.

Even the May 1964 2000 Operator Manual states: "Foot dipper switch 
fitted to North American Dollar Area models."  (There's the answer to 
another perennial question re NADA.) It also says that the "lift left 
lever to flash" function is only on NADA cars.

So, back to the original question. Have you definitely seen 3500S's in 
Canada that don't have the dimmer footswitch on the floor? To me, it 
seems much more likely that such a car was modified by some owner than 
that it was manufactured that way at the factory.  Even in 1964, NADA 
P6's had foot dimmers. Since ALL 3500S's in the USA and Canada were NADA 
cars, you would have to show me a 3500S without a foot dimmer or tell me 
that you are looking at one right now, for me to believe it.

Is it possible that the car you are remembering was a TC and not a 
3500S? Maybe a non-NADA LHD 2000 or 2000TC was imported into Canada by 

I'm not sure what you mean by finishing trims in the boot. All P6s had 
the cardboard "finishing" panels shown in the brochure. I know the 3500S 
had a carpeted trunk. If I picked up my 3500S at the dealership and 
there was no carpet in the trunk, they wouldn't get away with telling ME 
it was a "factory difference" or any other words to that effect! What a 
euphemism that would be for a major quality control mistake.

I think that differences such as you describe are more likely to have 
been people messing with the cars some time during the past 35 years, 
not factory differences. If I saw a car with a non-NADA spec headlight 
dimmer circuit, I would check the VIN to see if it was ever intended to 
end up in North America.


Brooks wrote:
> Glen...
> I know this Rover was sitting for quite a while on the holding area in 
> PQ I believe (Dad can confirm if I ask) and it was not a car that was 
> handled by any "Rover" dealers...it was sold only through british 
> leyland dealers at that time in Atlantic Canada....dealers would not 
> be apt to be changing steering wheel stalks or bumpers without turn 
> signals mounted beneath them...nor would they be removing finishing 
> trims in the boot to suit a customers needs...not something I can 
> believe.
> The radio was indeed an option...and so was the air...I did forget 
> about that...however the windshield would probally be part of the air 
> conditioning package.
> I know anything is possible...but let's face it...It is highly 
> unlikely that dealers would be interested in changing such 
> items...cosmetics perhaps...but steering stalks for turn signals and 
> removing foot dimmers...I don't think it's even a possibility. These 
> cars came over with factory differences and I see no proof to say 
> otherwise.
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Glen Wilson" <rovercar at comcast.net>
> To: <rovernet at lyris.ccdata.com>
> Sent: Saturday, March 29, 2008 11:55 AM
> Subject: [ROVERNET - UK] 3500S specs for USA and Canada
>> Brooks wrote:
>>> To my knowledge there were "NO" options available for the 3500S back 
>>> in 70-71 in Canada....My Father bought his "brand New" and that's 
>>> one thing I recall him telling people...this car came just like you 
>>> see it....the only choice he was able to make when he ordered the 
>>> car was the color.
>>> I have had several 3500s Rovers and not one was exactly the same as 
>>> the other....There were factory differences ....and I suspect that 
>>> the pillars were indeed original and not an option....however how 
>>> many were released that way from the factory would be almost 
>>> impossible to know.
>> I think there may easily have been DEALER differences, but I think 
>> that genuine "factory differences" were exceedingly rare, if they 
>> existed at all. I just don't think they put TC body panels on a 3500S 
>> and sent it on its way.
>> The vinyl-covered sail panels were not standard or optional on the 
>> 3500S. They aren't in the brochure, dealer price lists, or 
>> replacement parts manual. According to James Taylor, the Federal 
>> 2000TC MkII and 3500S were in production concurrently for a few 
>> months at the end, so presumably the vinyl covered sail panels could 
>> have been ordered by the dealer and installed on a new 3500S, but you 
>> would have gone home with a couple of Tobacco Leak sail panels in 
>> your boot. Maybe the dealer ate the cost of the sail panels to sell 
>> the car.
>> This question of what was standard and what was optional on the 3500S 
>> shouldn't be something that's open to question since it is clearly 
>> documented.
>> I've never seen ANY documentation showing that the US and Canada 
>> 3500S's were anything but identical in specification and options. It 
>> might be hard to buy a car with air conditioning off the lot in 
>> Yellowknife, but that's not because the options or specifications 
>> differed between the two countries. Maybe there's some sort of dealer 
>> memorandum that came out of Burlington that says otherwise, but no 
>> one seems able to produce a copy of it.
>> If Dennis' father's dealer only sold the car in one configuration, 
>> that was the dealers policy, not Rover Company policy. The glossy 
>> color brochures listed the optional and standard equipment. Maybe the 
>> dealer was keen on selling cars he already had in stock and reluctant 
>> to order cars he might get stuck with if the buyer changed his mind. 
>> Still, if anyone wanted a car with the optional extra-cost air 
>> conditioning, it would be sort of crazy for the dealer to refuse to 
>> sell it to him. Sounds more like the dealer was "optioning up" all of 
>> the cars he brought in. If this dealer was the only Rover dealer in 
>> New Brunswick, he could probably get away with whatever he wanted.
>> There definitely were optional items listed in the brochures 
>> distributed in the United States and Canada. My brochure lists 
>> British Leyland offices in Leonia, New Jersey and Burlington, 
>> Ontario. So, there was one brochure and one specification for both 
>> countries.
>> The options were:
>> 1. Air Conditioning
>> 2. Sundym Tinted Glass (separate option)
>> 3. Electrically Heated Rear Window
>> 4. Radio AM/FM
>> 5. Roof Rack
>> That's it.
>> The boot-mounted spare was standard. No optional wheels are mentioned 
>> in the brochure as had been the case with the 2000TC, just pressed 
>> steel wheels with stainless steel wheel covers. All of the brochures, 
>> magazine ads and road tests show the standard wheel covers. Two 
>> exterior mirrors were standard. There was NO leather interior option. 
>> The steering wheel was leather-covered in all cars. Power windows, 
>> steering and brakes were standard.
>> If anyone thinks that the above is not accurate, it would be 
>> fantastic to get documented proof that the factory documents I have 
>> are incomplete and were superseded by other documents that followed. 
>> I'd be happy to post them on the web so that people could see them.
>> Glen
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