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MG ZR ZS ZT Technical - Short Lived Joy

At last on Friday after three weeks of driving horrible Vectra hire car, I go the phone call I had been waiting for. The ZS was fixed after the incident with the Nissan Premira and a lady who "didn't see" just 6 hours after I had taken delivery

Perfect timing as I had a climbing trip planned to Snowdonia this weekend and could really put it through its paces. Picked up the car all shiny and and looking like new and drove the 200 odd miles to Snowdonia fully loaded with 3 passangers. Noted comments from my fellow mountaineers on the way like " nice seats, very comfortable", " Loads of Room in the back", " Nice Colour"....etc. etc. Made it in record time!

It wasn't till I turned the stereo down that at around about 30-40 mph I could hear a strange whistling noise. On further examination in the daylight on Saturday morning several people pointed out that the bonnet did not appear to be the same height on both sides. In examining round the rest of the car more closely, I also noticed that the Rear nearside door was not flush with the rest of the car. In addition the steering wheel appears to be slightly off centre and the demister for the front screen pumps out virtually no air even when the fan is on full. Not the best of starts so back it goes to my dealer on Wednesday.

Anyone else had problems with panel or door alignment. The door area was nowhere near the accident spot and apparently the bonnet was not removed to fix the car?

Having said all that its was a stunning weekend in Wales, perfect MG weather and Sunday afternoon I abandoned the rock for the tarmac and clocked up100 miles up and down the passes, trying desperatly to push the car to the limit, but it really does stick to the road. Big grin! Waved cheerly to a Anthracite ZR, but just a blank look in return. Waved to an MGB no reponse. Come on guys it was a beautiful day! Whats happening to the mark of friendship?


>>Waved to an MGB no reponse.

What do you expect?

He was driving a classic sports car and you were driving a grandad Rover 45 with some different badges on the front. Get a life.

Enthusiast of Basingstoke, you say you're an enthusiast, but what of? Obviously not MGs.

Climber, I don't usually plug my own site too much, but we have someone on the forum who might be able to help you, goto and click into the Ask Dr Dave forum. Copy and paste most of your post above into a post on there and he should be able to help.


Steve Childs.
Steve Childs

Thank Steve

Enthusiast of Basingstoke, I know a certain Liverpuddlian you would get on very well with, perhaps you and he could put your minds together and come up with something constructive to say.



There has been lots of posts recently on what is a "Sports Car". Personally, the MGB has never fallen into that category. Sorry, for disappointing you all - Triumphs were the sportscars during that era of BL.

Anyhow back onto topic and Climbers woes, looks like a major brow beat with the dealer! And of course the ZS180 IS a sports car - 177bhp is a valid reason - ENJOY!

Also, I acknowledge the later stuff, as I said, I really cannot abide the B in any form, so I wouldn't flash it out of principle! It should have died in 1976 and what was that abboration built in the 90's called?
Jerry Flint

Enthusiast, Basingstoke

Do you not know your MG history. The first MG's were modified (as in go faster) standard Morris products. The same as what MG Z cars are today, albeit modified Rover products.
So what is the problem?

Oi !! Jerry !!! yes you !!! Wotch it - leave the RV8 alone !
For all-round practicality, performance, style, fun and rarity my favourite MG owned to date is the BGTV8 and the RV8 goes one better surely....


the FIRST MG's? I'd say that MOST MG's were modified 'other' vehicles. The badge-engineered MG is one of the most consistent themes in MG's history. The badge-engineered MG outlived Abingdon.

OTOH, post-war, there was the Magnette, 1100/1300, midget, the MMM's, and now the Z-cars.

The 'unique' postwar cars being the TF/MGA, the B-derived cars, and the F. That's 3 'MG only' chassies (sp?) versus 8 'other' derived chassies.

Of course I've conveniently ignored most of the pre-war cars. Biased eh.

I'm sorry Dave, it is me but I cannot stand "B"s nothing personal.

Even ones with the great Buick V8 - was far better in the TR8.

Really started when I bought Triumphs and my mate bought MGB's - but I think they stink, no performance - rust and look sh*te.

Sorry, but we all cannot like all the same vehicles, even though I'm VERY pro British - which today means MGR!

Jerry Flint


you poor deluded soul..there is help out there for people like you!
ian holiday

"what was that abboration built in the 90's called?"
I guess you have never had the opportunity to travel in an RV8 or you would not make such a stupid, offensive comment -
oh by the way the original engine from my MG Maestro now powers a Triumph!! -


Why do people get personal? I just don't like MGB's or their derivatives's (not you whoever you are), it's an opinion, they are allowed you know!

Just because I support MGR, doesn't meant I have to like all their products.

Oh! the reason - handling!

Jerry Flint

mm.. seems I have opened a can of worms. As ex B owner, member of MG Car Club and Owners Club and regular at race meets and track days, I feel my new ZS is very worthy of the badge and is certainly in keeping with the MG tradition. It may not be top of its class, but its certainly value for money and a great drive. Just wish that MGR could get the customer service bit right, In particular PDI. After all If I tell all my friends how many times I have had to take my ZS back to the dealer, they are likely to think twice about buying one. By the way my dealer has refused to adjust the onestop window so that it goes down all the way as they have had "no official communciation from MGR regarding the issue, all the cars are the same and it might burn out the relay".

Jerry if you like the Buick V8 you can't be all bad ;-)
The TR8 eh ? now there's a car that I've liked the look and sound of, ever since I saw how well they go up Wiscombe hillclimb. Mind you, I thought the TR7 shell rusted far worse than the MGB - indeed is that not the reason they are now so rare ? ANyone know the production figures ?

TR8 ??

Any pics?

BTW I too liked TRs but could not afford one so I had to have *B*s instead - the Spitfire was terrible, I couldn't see out of it without contorting myself into a horrible shape - even more horrible than is natural:-) Mind you it was perfect for little girls, my then girlfriend was just five foot and she loved her Spitfire - a spitfire driving a Spitfire!

Ted Newman

TR7/8 production was about 115 thousand. There were only about 18 genuine UK TR8's and are worth much more than std 2.0 litre TR7's. About 2500 TR8's were exported to the USA. Quite a few are back here but the TR7 re-engined with Rover V8 lumps in various guises is very popular and fast....

I have a near concours 1980 TR7 convertible and an 2001 MGF; which do I prefer? Well, its like that TV advert 'Daddy or Chips?' - I can't decide!!!


Ian Walker

The same level of build in each than matey?

Nothing wrong with the build of my TR7 it was built in Canley, Coventry not Speke in Liverpool. It's still going strong 21 yrs later. Shame the Unions in Liverpool saw fit to nearly crucify the TR7 and seriously damage UK car industry at the same time. I hope Jaguar at Halewood fare better.

One of the many reasons I bought the MGF was to support UK industry I have no regrets, the car, engineering and the build quality is excellent.

A few of my family work in the car industry so I can have a 20%ish discount on Fords/Jaguars but decided not to buy one. I thought the MX-5 overrated, the componentry under the bonnet looks really cheap and nasty, the trim flimsy and the dealer was disinterested in selling....A BMW Z3 is under powered unless you pay silly money. Anyway I did not, and will never, buy or drive, a BMW after what those incompetent morons did to MGR and Land Rover. The MGF was and remains the best choice for the thinking buyer. For the price it can't be beaten.

Ian Walker

Tell it as it is Ian. Good man.

look Mega another happy MGF owner.

Ian Walker, Lancashire wrote some admirable stuff. Now that's what I call a "True Brit". Good for you!
John McFeely

The TR7 i owned was from Coventry and i had loads of problems, most of which went with that sh*t engine, replaced by a Rover V8!

Yes Pro another happy MGF owner, one of a handful!

Listen John, i am sorry about the other week.

>>>Even ones with the great Buick V8 - was far better in the TR8.<<<

Trouble is Jerry that they should have been much better than they were, after all it was then a NEW design from the ground up.

My first drive of a TR7 was a development 1850cc version that was LHD. This was sometime before the public availability but after the disguising that accompanied all the previous road testing. It was great from the inside, a very similar feeling to that which you have with the MGF with hard top.

I had very little contact with the cars then until production shifted to Canley and then only with the convertible. Even then it was only small and with the convertible which I think was a vast improvement.

My only other contact was with the Tony Pond Lombard RAC car of 1978 (4th overall) and the three times Cox and Buckles Championship winning TR7 V8 of Mick Richards in the early '90's. I had quite an involvemnet with the latter, and I can say it was fantastic driving a TR7 which really handled properly and had a top speed restricted by the engine rev limiter - 165mph true, as measured at Bruntingthorpe.

The only down side of that car was the perspex windscreen which used to fold inwards onto a steel support frame once you went through 135mph. Folds with a bit of a bang, which does make you twitch even though you expect it!!

On the subject of the slant 4 orignial 4 cyl ohc engine, who here has had the misfortune to have to remove the head to replace a head gasket or two?? Remember those head studs at 45 degrees which if siezed (not unusual)meant you couldn't easily remove the head???

Roger Parker

I Hated the oil filteron mine, it was a type that you place the filter inside a fitting on the engine.

I didn't wait for a HGF Rog, the engine went bang during close combat with a RS 2000! Replaced with a Rover V8 plus uprated brakes suspension and axle.
Mine also had a 6 barrel "Holley" carb set up, easy 200+ BHP.

The FORD camp got killed off very quickly!

This thread was discussed between 10/12/2001 and 23/12/2001

MG ZR ZS ZT Technical index

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