BL Technology ECV3
This clever little car was the brainchild of ex-Rover and BL technical genius Spen King. It was meant to be a showcase for the new BL Technology division, set up in the late 1970s, and conceived to help deliver new and exciting cars and drivetrains to its embattled maker. The aluminium-bodied ECV3 was certainly promising, and in many ways, was 20 years ahead of its time. So, this Maestro-sized car weighed less than 800kg, was powered by a 1.1-litre three-cylinder engine (which ended up becoming the K-series) and was claimed to deliver 100mpg at low speeds. A few motoring journalists drove it at the time at the Gaydon test track, and said it was a little rough and ready, but was certainly an interesting proposition.
WHY WASN’T IT MADE?
It was never anything more than a testbed for the engineers to play with, but there’s something quite engaging about the ECV3. Look at cars like the Audi A2, and you’ll see just how far this was ahead of its time. Its engine did make it into production – in a way – as the lightweight K-series.