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Go Back   Madabout Kitcars Forum > Mad Build Area > Marlin Sportster, Cabrio, Berlinetta and Roadster builds

Marlin Sportster, Cabrio, Berlinetta and Roadster builds Enthused or Confused about your vintage Marlin build? Ask away here or show off your build.

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  #21  
Old 1st June 2015, 17:47
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Had an email through today saying my application has been successfully processed and they'll be in touch with a date so I've passed the form filling in test anyway.

One thing I wanted to check, how do they actually assess the speedo calibration? is it with a radar gun over a section of the yard or do they do it on the rolling road. The MOT station rolling road brake tester only went up to 10mph so not much use.
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  #22  
Old 1st June 2015, 19:04
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Quote:
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Had an email through today saying my application has been successfully processed and they'll be in touch with a date so I've passed the form filling in test anyway.

One thing I wanted to check, how do they actually assess the speedo calibration? is it with a radar gun over a section of the yard or do they do it on the rolling road. The MOT station rolling road brake tester only went up to 10mph so not much use.
Hi Morris. You're nearly there!! Speed was tested on a rolling road @ Bristol Test centre. He checked speedo against various known roller speeds (in 10s IIRC) up to and just above 70mph, because that's obviously only as fast as you will go in a BMW powered kit car.....
Have you got proof of the date of birth of your engine, so they test the emissions using that year's criteria? If not, I somehow managed to email BMW with chassis and engine numbers from the donor and got a 'Birth Certificate', all for free, great service, I thought! There was also a brake balance test he got me to do, which was accelerate as hard as possible, then slam the brakes on, to make sure the fronts lock before the rears. Also you need access to the engine and chassis number relatively easily. Take lots of cable ties, nut covers, and anything else you can take with you!!

Good luck, it's a terrifying and simultaneously exhilarating experience (when you pass!), well was for me anyway!!

Rob
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  #23  
Old 1st June 2015, 19:05
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My speedo was tested on a roller at the SVA
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  #24  
Old 1st June 2015, 21:34
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BMW were not so helpful with me unfortunately. We went back and to for quite a few weeks with them trying to find out my engine age, and then just when it was looking promising, they just said they couldn't help. I had it tested as a 93 engine as per the V5C and the emissions were very good so no worries there. I've also already been through and made sure that all the bracket-age I'd put in front of the engine number is now moved so there's fairly easy access (though the bonnet side panel does need unscrewing).

If they do the speedo on the roller that works in my favour as you can manually correct up or down while driving. If it was a test with a radar that would be a pain as I'd have to recalculate a pulse per mile figure on the spot, which would probably not go well.
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  #25  
Old 1st June 2015, 22:03
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BMW were not so helpful with me unfortunately. We went back and to for quite a few weeks with them trying to find out my engine age, and then just when it was looking promising, they just said they couldn't help. I had it tested as a 93 engine as per the V5C and the emissions were very good so no worries there. I've also already been through and made sure that all the bracket-age I'd put in front of the engine number is now moved so there's fairly easy access (though the bonnet side panel does need unscrewing).

If they do the speedo on the roller that works in my favour as you can manually correct up or down while driving. If it was a test with a radar that would be a pain as I'd have to recalculate a pulse per mile figure on the spot, which would probably not go well.
Hi Morris.
You may have tried this avenue already, but I managed to get lucky by using this email address: Customer.Information@bmwfin.com
A very helpful girl called Stacey confirmed the date of manufacture of the engine. I think it took a few weeks, and a couple of reminders to them, but the end result worked ok. I don't mean to put a downer on your test, but it was one of the only bits of paperwork the tester wanted to see. He wasn't really interested in much else paperwork wise, but every test is different due to the 'human element', so that may just have been my guy. Again if you have a decent guy doing the test, hopefully if the speedo reads off a bit, he'll nip off for a 'cup of tea' to allow some fettling to be done, to pass the speedo test. Our guy was a sound chap, and really seemed to want to pass the car, so he accommodated any on the job adjustments, including repositioning the front headlights to pass the distance from wheel arch edge measurement!
I get the feeling, that a lot of these guys make their minds up early on, as to how deep they're going to delve. If they see a good level of workmanship and attention to detail, I think they are more likely to give you the chance to correct any minor 'infringements' that may be found, and be more lenient with the 'Spheres of Doom' etc...
I drove to my test from Lechlade to Bristol with no screen or reg plate and a bike helmet on, I think I must have been photographed by passing passengers more than any other car that day in that area!

Good luck, hopefully I haven't added to the stress ball that is Marlin building!

Rob
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  #26  
Old 1st June 2015, 22:11
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BMW were not so helpful with me unfortunately. We went back and to for quite a few weeks with them trying to find out my engine age, and then just when it was looking promising, they just said they couldn't help.
If you go and see your local BMW spares department and ask them to run a report off their computer for the donor car's VIN number. It should give you the date of manufacture and the original engine number. It's not a birth certificate but should be enough proof of the age of the engine. I've usually found the spares guys very helpful.

Secondly, I recommend a pre-IVA MOT test. A second pair of eyes does no harm to check your car before the IVA. I believe it is legal to drive to an MOT as long as you have an appointment. It gives you a chance to bed in the brakes, test the steering self centering and check the speedo.
You can have it officially MOT'd on the Sportster's VIN number but the disadvantage is that you then have to get your car MOT'd every year after your registration (rather than 3 years from the date of registration). Again, not such a bad idea
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  #27  
Old 1st June 2015, 22:18
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........... hopefully if the speedo reads off a bit, he'll nip off for a 'cup of tea' to allow some fettling to be done, to pass the speedo test. Our guy was a sound chap, and really seemed to want to pass the car, ......
I had exactly the same experience. He ran the rollers while I adjusted my speedo until it was OK.

I just remembered, they tested my speedo on the rollers up to 70mph. Sitting in a stationary car do 70mph was quite exciting
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  #28  
Old 1st June 2015, 22:57
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yeah, it was that same customer services email I tried. They did come back and ask for follow up info which I provided but in the end said they couldn't help. I may try my local (25 miles away) dealer as Peter suggests as I need to pick up one or two parts anyway.

I suppose the V5 only proves what engine the car had at the point I bought it, not what it was originally fitted with. Having said that, it passed the Basic Emissions test with flying colours anyway so I'm not too worried about having to argue the standard down on age.
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  #29  
Old 1st June 2015, 23:21
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The text (copied and pasted from Autobionics.co.uk website)below sums the whole experience up pretty well, and lists what you should be able to provide evidence wise and some fairly obvious advice about 'being nice' �� Hope it's not too patronising!

The first 5 minutes might well set the tone for the rest of the test. Your examiner does this day in day out as a job, so it is unlikely he will be in the same state of mental stimulation that you are! Be polite, listen to what he asks you to do and be prepared to do as he asks. Remember to bring a bag or box of basic tools with you so that you can comply with any requests to remove a wheel nut or piece of trim, if you have to run 300m to fetch them when he asks to see something 5 minutes into the test, is only going to add 5 minutes to the time before his 1st tea break, so be prepared!

Do not babble on at the examiner like an expectant father either. Keep close to him, unless asked to move but do not get under his feet, he will likely ask you how things work and might want to know some background to the car. Be honest, don’t waffle, but try and engage the examiner in some of the detail or the history of the marquee, if you get a reaction then continue the rapport, if you get one word answers then give the bloke his space and see if he opens up. Remember, most are car or bike fans so if you can engage it makes the whole thing less tense. We have quite a good rapport with our local test centre now and a little good natured banter certainly lightens the atmosphere.

Different test centres run things in a different order, but things you can expect to happen over the next 2-3 hours are:

Engine and chassis number check, including proof of age of engine.

General check of the interior including seat belt mountings and position, seat fixings, switch operation, warning light operation, lights check, brake balance bar (if fitted) locking mechanism, interior fittings edge and radii conformity, door operation - it must have 2 clicks, latched and shut, etc.

Exterior check including radii conformity, lights position, wiper/washer function, lights function, wheel fixing and security (you might be asked to remove a wheel nut here), bonnet/boot/ clamshell latching and security, number plate position and lighting, etc. If your body has a recess for the number plate, then a new IVA requirement is that a VOSA sized number plate, which is about 10mm larger all round than a standard UK number plate, must fit in this recess. If your recess is tight for a standard plate size then check with your local test centre for exact dimensions.

The emissions test will depend on the age of your engine, so this might only take a few minutes or up to 15 minutes if it has to be plugged into the emission monitoring equipment. Make sure you know what your engine will be tested against and make sure it is set up so it will pass, as mentioned above!

Your car is up on the ramps for a full under body check, which is very similar to an MOT test. You will more than likely be required to sit in the car and operate brakes and steering, etc. If brake lines leak, or snag on tyres at full lock, this is where it will be spotted. Remember what we said about getting oil in the examiners hair? Make sure the motor and transmission are oil tight so it helps give the examiner the feeling that the car has been assembled correctly.

Headlight alignment check. If you have not set the lights up prior to the IVA then explain this to the examiner up front and have the required tools for adjustment in your pocket. We have not yet met an examiner yet who won’t allow you to set this up during the test, so do not waste time trying to do this at home!

Brake efficiency and balance check. This takes a good 20 minutes and tests the efficiency of all the brakes on the car a-la MOT, but the examiner has a pressure sensing pad fastened to his foot to measure peddle effort. He also weighs each end of the car and this allows the examiner to establish if the brake balance is appropriate for the weight distribution. The handbrake will get a good workout here to make sure it works properly and can lock the wheels in less than four clicks. If you want to know what your car weighs then this is the point to ask.

Speedometer accuracy. For this test your car is put on a rolling road and ‘driven’ at up to 70 mph, it’s OK for your speedometer to slightly over read but not under read. It will be checked for accuracy every 10 mph and your examiner might well ask for guidance on what gear to use, etc. to get to this speed. If your speedometer is programmable then explain this to the examiner and have your laptop with you, he will be more than happy to let you tweak the calibration if it doesn’t take forever. Make sure you know what you are doing so you do not spend 30 minutes reading the manual.

Noise check. This will be done outside and involves the engine being held at 2/3rds of the speed at which the engine develops maximum power, whist it’s exhaust noise is measured, so be careful what you put on the IVA form! Your manufacturer might be able to help you here but as a guide, you will get away with saying that a 6-ltr Chevy makes it max power at 4000rpm but putting a V-Tec Honda motor down as 3000rpm is not likely to wash. Remember the examiner is likely to be a car enthusiast too! This test has got stricter for IVA, with noise limits now being reduced to 99dBA.

Mirrors check. Likely to be done outside and will involve the examiner sitting in the car and making sure he can see various fixed points behind him in the mirrors. Electrically adjustable mirrors make this part of the test a breeze!

There may be variations to this depending on the test centre you are using, but remember all centres are ensuring your car complies with the same regulations, so make sure it is built to comply with them and you will be OK.

If you have established a rapport with the examiner then it is worth checking with him after every stage how your car is doing. This way you can mentally work out what you need to do to correct it and assuming its fixable then you can ask the examiner if it is OK to fix it when he goes for a cup of tea. This might sound a bit presumptuous but it is worth it and usually works! Try and keep a can-do attitude towards any running fixes, if you put your mind to it and have the above mentioned spanner handy mate with you you’ll be surprised what you can sort out in 20 minutes. Sharp edges only need covering with foam tape or similar and even a brake line can be temporarily re-routed and re-bled in that time.

Assuming you have managed to sort out any minor glitches and made it through the above then the chances are you will have passed! If not, then try and remain philosophical, if it’s a relatively easy fix see if you can negotiate a quick re-test later in the day and do the repairs at the centre. If not then admit defeat gracefully, there is no point falling out with the examiner or other station staff, as the chances are you will be meeting again in a few weeks. Always remember that if your car has failed, then it’s your fault and not theirs, they are only measuring what you present against a pre defined set of rules, so don’t blame them!
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  #30  
Old 2nd June 2015, 12:45
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Just a couple of points. MOT testers have a handbook that from the vehicles age and specification gives the range of engine numbers and emission level. Knowing the donor vehicle you can demonstrate the age of the engine by showing it falls in the range listed in the book.

When IVAing my Cabrio I took photos of all the failure items so I could demonstrate on re-test that I had fixed them.
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  #31  
Old 9th June 2015, 17:51
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I've been given a date of the 2nd July so a little over 3 weeks of nail biting and wondering what I've forgotten. Cardiff only do appointments at 8 in the morning rather than afternoon which is a pain as at that time of day, a 45 minute journey becomes over 2 hours. I guess I'll have to just be prepared to leave a silly o'clock
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  #32  
Old 9th June 2015, 19:48
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I've been given a date of the 2nd July so a little over 3 weeks of nail biting and wondering what I've forgotten. Cardiff only do appointments at 8 in the morning rather than afternoon which is a pain as at that time of day, a 45 minute journey becomes over 2 hours. I guess I'll have to just be prepared to leave a silly o'clock
Not long to wait, very exciting!!
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  #33  
Old 2nd July 2015, 17:00
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Went for IVA today and failed On a positive note the tester did say it was a very good build standard compared with most of the cars presented. The list of fail points looks long but there's not too much really taxing. Just need to pick it all off and it shouldn't take too long. It was a very strict test and I know that for some of the items, others have not had a problem with, but when they came up, I just queried the solution rather than arguing about it.

1. Ball joints catching on wheels on full lock
2. NS mirror angle of view
3. Front brake hoses slightly touching suspension parts on lock
4. Rear brake performance @55% - needs to be 60%
5. Secondary brake performance
6. Interior projections - switches & protectors on dash
7. Interior projections - dash radius under right side
8. Exterior projections - front and rear bumper radius on back edges
9. Exterior projections - Rear trailing arm radius under front of rear arches
10. Exterior projections - Bonnet catches
11. Exterior projections - A panel louvres
12. Exterior projections - top flat part of front wing braces
13. Too many side repeaters - should only be single pair
14. Side repeaters position must be within 2600mm of front of vehicle (rear set)
15. clutch pedal fouling slightly on steering column base mount
16. Cap needed on starter motor positive terminal

I also technically failed the check for rear wheel arch coverage at the back (150mm above the hub). It passed on one side but not the other. We checked and double checked measurements and couldn't work it out as there was about 10mm difference on the one side. He wasn't too convinced by the little reflector plates (which only just scrapped though on viewing angles). The rear seat belt mounts were also a sticking point as he was a bit worried about the lack of triangulation to the main chassis. Luckily I had my laptop to hand with some clearer photos of the bare chassis so he was able to take a copy of it to check this and the rear arch issue with his boss (via email). They talked it over for quite bit and decided both were ok so I scraped through there.

The effective upper seat belt mount using the rollover bar cross brace nearly caused an issue (though I'd checked and thought it was well within the limits). The special measuring tool with the bits of string was showing the height off the seat base to be marginal but he was having trouble getting it to sit still. Seeing my opportunity I offered to hold it steady, which of course requires a certain degree of downward pressure and it passed by millimetre or two.

The speedo, which I was worried about through lack of testing was bang on. It read 30 at 30 and 67 at 70 so I don't think I could have got much closer just on a calculated pulses per mile.

In terms of fixing stuff

1. The main issue with my ball joints would be solved most simply by sticking some 17" wheels on though it would only be a temp solution as I have no intention of wasting the money spent on refurb-ing and tyre-ing my donor wheels. I can also go for markIII steering limiters and grind back some unnecessary material on the rod ends themselves.

2. Mirror angle can be sorted with a packing piece

3. Front brake hoses. I had done the piece of fuel hose and a cable tie trick but the tester reckoned you can put a twist in the cable tie the will make the hose move away from the suspension when turning. I'll give it a try.

4. Of the list of failures, the one I was surprised about are the rear brakes but this is because they passed the MOT test @ 40%. I hadn't realised IVA had a 60% higher standard but I still think this is just a case of bedding them in.

5. secondary brake performance. 3 series handbrakes are crap. not much to say there. I'll get some cables made up that allow a higher degree of tweaking compared with my current setup.

6. The dash switches is an odd on. The tester said I was the first person he'd had who'd bothered to use the little loops and they did the trick apart from the end ones which then were becoming an issue themselves. Some sort of thick covered buttresses either side should sort this out rather than a radical redesign of the dash

7. I'd covered but not radiused the dash underside in the area near the ignition key as I though it was in the exempt zone behind the wheel. Turns out that's for projections and the dash bottom still has to meet the general requirement

8. I though this was a bit fussy but apparently it's become something their focusing on now. The forward face of the bumpers were fine but the rear face at the top and bottom wasn't. He said to just slap some edging on to get through.

9. The E36 rear trailing arm is a bit of a rough casting and protrudes down in front of the rear arches. When checked with the cone to test the body line it can be touched and there falls foul of the radius test. I should be able to make some simple cover to go in front of it.

10. bonnet catches will either be heat shrinked or replaced with more friendly items

11. A panel louvres though blunted still failed. He just said to stick some rubber over them. Personally I'd rather just remake them in plain ali as they don't do much in the way of venting.

12. This is the part of the wing brace where it transitions from a rod to flat bar. It may be the way I mounted my wings leaving it more exposed but I've not heard anyone else have a problem with this. A file or some rubber will sort it out

13&14. The side repeater thing is a bit annoying as the rules are ambiguous to begin with. He's suggested I place them on the front wing as although it's right next to the main front indicator, it will meet the requirement. I may also look at moving my little LED ones to a point on the tub within the distance from the front required but also within the viewing angles

15. Clutch pedal occasional fouling. knew about that but thought that as it was the clutch and not the brake it wouldn't be a big deal

16. Positive terminal uncovered on starter. BMW made it that way! It will take all of 2 seconds to fix though.

Last edited by morris; 2nd July 2015 at 17:02..
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  #34  
Old 2nd July 2015, 18:02
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Well done - very close and nothing too serious.

With my front brake pipe I made a discreet bracket fixed to the top of the main chassis that was angled downwards and to which the flexi was clipped. I didnt attach them to the wisbones at all.

I am suprised about the brakes. Mine were fine even with the crappy metro servo. Handbrake is good also. But mine is e30 based. Perhaps the arrangement is different...

Cheers, Robin
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  #35  
Old 2nd July 2015, 21:25
NigelB NigelB is offline
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Ian,

That sound like an extremely thorough and detailed examination.

On the upside though, if it was that thorough and that's all they came up with, you can be confident that it's a pretty solid car.

Congratulations. Nothing serious. all the issues are down amongst the worms and the only real 'pain' is the extra 90 quid.

You should still be on the road before summer's out!!

Great news!!

Nigel
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  #36  
Old 2nd July 2015, 21:35
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Good effort, not too far off!
Sounds like the examiner was very detailed but obviously impressed with the build quality overall. Sometimes they get very fixated on particular regulations in my experience.
Best of luck with the retest.
Tim
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  #37  
Old 2nd July 2015, 22:17
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Well done for getting all the major parts passed. Some of the more difficult things like self-centering, noise, emissions, speedo, etc you've passed so just the snags to clear up.
I think you've come across a very fussy examiner as I've never heard of anyone having an issue with the louvres on the 'A' panels?


Good luck with the retest!!

Last edited by peterux; 2nd July 2015 at 22:19.. Reason: deleted irrelevant comment
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  #38  
Old 3rd July 2015, 08:23
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Yeah, the louvres were a surprise to me too. he said it was because they protruded by more than 5mm. I'd looked at them as a panel gap and applied the 10mm rule so thought I was OK. he didn't have a problem with the gap between the door and the A panel right next to it that has the same radius filed on it. I wasn't going to argue as there were other things against which the test had already failed that were not fixable on the spot like that would have been. As I only have louvres on the A panels and deliberately didn't have them done on the rest of the bonnet (for this very reason) it's an easy fix.

The other issue I forgot to mention was the heads of the bolts on the front lower arm of the front suspension as they were touching the steering gaiter. He was not personally that worried but said others are fussy about anything rubbing on the gaiter so although he didn't mark it on the form, recommended I sort some thing out like a thinner gaiter for my retest in case I get someone else who then picks up on it. I've just ordered some 10.9 M10 button head bolts so that will solve that problem. Unfortunately there's not enough room for a plastic cap or I'd just do that.

Hopefully I can get things sorted and a retest done in the next month or so. Trouble is with the registration I may still miss the best of the summer anyway.

cheers
Ian
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Old 6th July 2015, 21:39
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As if failing my IVA wasn't annoying enough, a kind lorry driver backed over my tow car this evening when he missed his turning and obviously didn't believe there could possibly be anything behind him before slapping it in reverse and launching himself backwards.



It looks bad but I reckon I can buy it back from the insurance company (they've already said it's too old to bother fixing) and get it going again for the price of a second hand bonnet of no fixed colour and some brackets. Could do with putting my car fixing effort in other places at the moment though
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Old 17th July 2015, 00:13
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Hi Ian
Sorry to see this.( I'm on hols in Canada)
If it's any consolation I bought a 330Ci CAT D insurance write off just like yours and bought a bonnet and slam panel (definitely advise you get one too) for 75 off eBay in the right colour and now have it back on the road.
The bonnets for the Touring and Saloon are the same but Coupe and Cabrio are not. Definitely hang on to it.
As a guide to insurance valuation to buy back They make between 700 - 1000 at auction
Have a look at Copart.co.uk

Good luck with your IVA retest - you seem to be making good progress with the annoying mods requested .

Mike



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As if failing my IVA wasn't annoying enough, a kind lorry driver backed over my tow car this evening when he missed his turning and obviously didn't believe there could possibly be anything behind him before slapping it in reverse and launching himself backwards.



It looks bad but I reckon I can buy it back from the insurance company (they've already said it's too old to bother fixing) and get it going again for the price of a second hand bonnet of no fixed colour and some brackets. Could do with putting my car fixing effort in other places at the moment though
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