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1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2 Up For Sale

Submitted by on January 25, 2018

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

Images via Girardo & Co

This tough as nails 1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2 has an extensive history racing in South Africa, has been recently restored and is up for sale at Girardo & Co.

The car, chassis RRAWK7AA145248, was originally ordered by Mike O’Sullivan and his business partner. Setting up a racing team in South Africa and in need of a car, the pair travelled to the United Kingdom, visiting the Leyland motorsport division in Abington and ordering a 3.5-litre Rover SD1. Dave Price Racing built the car up to Group 2 specification, with the 3.5-litre engine built by Hesketh capable of 400 bhp. Two months later it was given a shakedown at Brands Hatch in the hands of Jeff Allam and shipped to South Africa.

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

The Rover was quick off the bat, competing in sports car races in between headline events like the Kyalami 9-hours endurance race, in which it competed in 1981 and 1982 and the Kyalami 1000 Kilometers, which it contested in ’83 and ’84.

Dick Sorensen would take on the car next, running it in a red and yellow livery and eventually passing it on to Dave le Roux. From le Roux, the car actually returned to the O’Sullivans, who restored it to its original green and white livery in 2003.

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

2014 saw it purchased by its current owner, who entrusted it to BGM Sport for a restoration that saw every panel and fitting stripped, assessed and rebuilt to an immaculate presentation.

Fully restored, it returned to the track at Vallelunga in April of 2015, picking up a pole position in the Heritage Touring Cup. It continued to run in the Heritage Touring Car Cup through 2015, competing at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Dijon-Prenois, Monza and Circuit Paul Ricard.

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

In Europe, the car is eligible for both the Heritage Touring Cup and HSCC Super Touring Car Trophy, making it a great option for those looking to get into the well-loved historic touring car racing scene.

Fully restored and presented in awe inspiring race ready condition with a full-to-bursting history file, this tough tin top is ready to continue its racing career. It’s up for sale at Girardo & Co, and you can find the full details on their website here.

Images via Girardo & Co

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

1981 Rover 3500 SD1 Group 2

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