Think there's confusion over the 'rover' badging, as I think BMW still own the name. I can't remember but it's strange (which is why the Chinese can't brand the cars as 'Rover' even though they bought the company - they're called 'Roewe' now!!).
Nope... NAC wanted to buy the brand as part of the MG Rover deal, but due to a contractual agreement made when BMW sold Land Rover to Ford, it meant Ford had first refusal on the brand should the Rover brand ever go bust to protect the Land Rover brand.
Ford took up this option and paid £6million for the Rover brand via their PAG division, which meant that it was part of the Land Rover brand, albeit defunct, and Ford never had any plan's to use it again.
Due to the Sale
of PAG to Tata, it mean's they now take control of the Rover brand alongside Land Rover and Jaguar. And for the past 6 months or so, the News
in India has been that Tata are planning to relaunch the brand in the UK and Europe sometime in 2009 or 2010 as an alternative to using the Tata brand, to help them gain market share.
The new Rover brand will sit nicely below Land Rover and Jaguar as a more mainstream brand.