Sounds like you are half convinced that you need to re-started and even looking forward to the re-start.
I have just completed the IVA on my 5Exi and its all pretty straight forward, I did an SVA on a different car and the fundamentals are the same and more to the point the 5Exi will pass without issue. One change for instance was that the seats need fitted headrests, where as the SVA did not.
If your not fitting the window screen for the IVA you still need a rear view mirror by the way.
Dave Gallop will complete any work you want on the car you are prepared to pay for and the latest suspension design that he completed on 'JC-Coops' car (another one for sale here) is the latest incarnation with less changes to the chassis and further improved trig.
I will be controversial
now and recommend that you complete the car to the original kit design as planned. Completing the car with all the original design issues appears ill advised but is the quickest and cheapest course to the completion of the car and seeing real progress for you and the observers! Changing the gear change is beneficial but its time consuming and will cause other issues that will need to be solved as you go along. There is a long detailed thread on the mods for this.
The car will still pass the IVA without modification, its the drivability that needs the modifications to be completed.
Once you are IVA'd you have better leverage to spend more and a desire to improve.
The mods that are important are the rear frame welding in and all corner suspension upgrade.
The mods that are nice to have are the improved rear disk upgrade, clutch upgrade, the gear change upgrade and improved engine mounts. I have also fitted the fat rear arches giving me the capability to fit 17” wheels on the rear.
So you now need to make a decision !! Pay Dave to complete the car and pre IVA it for you.
Or have the mechanical changes completed by Dave and complete the car yourself before IVA.
..Cash vs Time..
One other thing that may cause you to speed up is that the local DVLA offices are closing so any document presentation to your local office will turn into posting to Swansea.
I have used my local office a number of time and got it wrong and sorted it quickly where as posting to Swansea is more problematic. For example I took all my documents to register the car and presented the Cover Note from the insurance company (cover note because it was VIN based layup cover) wrong; I needed the certificate to get it registered, a cover note is not acceptable, cost me a return trip but saves a potential postal loss and a return/return postal delay to Swansea.
Keep us up to date we are all interested in the progress.