Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 5
A production sports coupe from Rover? This was the rumoured fate for the stylish, low, design study by the Italian Zagato company. Unfortunately, however, it never made it to production. The 4 ft. 2 in. high, two plus two seater, lightweight grand touring car was displayed at the 1967
Earls Court Motor Show and it was hoped that Rover would include it as a "special order only" model in the company's range for the following year.
David Bache and Gianni Zagato
Styled on a slightly modified Rover 2000 TC
base unit, the TCZ was the result of co-operation between David Bache, head of Rover styling, and Gianni Zagato, the concept being that of Ercole Spada. The design was decided on by a joint agreement between the two companies, combining Rover 2000 styling with an unmistakable Zagato flair and 380 lb. of weight-saving in its alloy body.
Christened the Rover TCZ, the car had a much more sporty driving position, an attractive revised instrument binacle, different shock absorber setting and a claimed 120 mph maximum speed. Rear seats were of the Porsche 911
type, having a split backrest and being individually foldable for increased luggage space.
Look closely and you will see that the standard Rover P6
radiator grille and headlights were used. David Bache had also been working on a coupe version of the P6 during the mid-Sixties (codename "Gladys"), with the intention of launching the car as an Alvis - thereby instigating an upmarket form of badge-engineering.
An unusual feature of the TCZ was the electrically operated rear "luggage" window, which could be raised two inches from the drivers seat to increase ventilation. Price of the car was vague when shown at Earls Court, with Rover telling potential customers to "Ask Zagato", and Zagato guessing "about £2000", although whether this was with or without tax was not made clear. It is most likely that if it had of ever made it to Australian shores, buyers would have been lucky to see any change out of $6000.