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MG ZR ZS ZT Technical - ZT-T Tailgate wont open - HELP!

I love it to bits, but the ZT-T let me down today - the tailgate wouldnt open!

Tried the release by the pedals - no joy, tried manaully at the back - no joy, tried the window too - no joy.

Who was the idiot that designed the override release and put it behind the boot lid panel? How the hell are you supposed to get to it when the back is full of stuff? Mercifully only my dog was in the back, but nontheless a hell of a job to get to it!

Anyone any quick ideas - or is it a trip to the nearest MG Rover dealer (only 30 miles away!!)? Do they go often?


Paul Barrow

Had the same problem on one on loan from MGR while awaiting MG ZT saloon, could be a common problem as I did see some one struggle at Calais when the security guards wanted to check the boot on a 75 version!

this may seem obvious, but you did take the car out of gear and put the parking brake on before you turn the ignition off. you will be suprised how many people just put autos into park, and leave the handbrake off. infact mgr have release a technical tip to dealerships to show customers, why their tailgates won't open!

Let me get this straight:-

You have to put the car into 'park'
You have to apply the handbrake
You have to switch the ignition off

before you can open the tailgate!

The ZT-T was on my short list as my new estate car - but not if one has to go through all that just to put/get in the back.

Ted Newman

Re ZTT tailgate. I had the same problem and I guessed that the solenoid had stuck. I then opened the driver's door, started the engine and then switched off. The tail gate solenoid freed itself and the tailgate opened normally. But it was a mild panic at the time. I had parked the car at Luton airport using airport transfers tonbridge and couldn't open the tailgate to remove the bags from the back. Fortunately recycling the solenoid by starting the engine worked. The problem occured twice more and then its been fine ever since. (Over six months ago - touch wood!)

What a super car, great fun to drive.

roche bentley

Roche is absolutely correct. I moved (drove) the car and went to demonstrate the non-functioning tailgate to the dealer, and guess what - it opened! Very strange!

However, MG Rover have released a technical bulletin on this / related tailgate problems. It is a very simple fix apparently - I let them do it under warranty - so just report it to your dealer and ask him to fix it.

Cannot comment on the "handbrake" procedure, but will make a mental note of it. I do just dump it in Park andnot bother with the Parking brake too much - bad Yank habit I got into over there in the 70s. That having said if it is the right and necessary procedure I wouldn't let that put you off an otherwise UTTERLY BRILLIANT car. I never thought I'd say that after some of the junk I have driven of late from around the world!

Thanks everyone.

Paul Barrow


I think you’re right as the problem was intermittent, I found the ZT-T a bit shaper on the steering response very impressive for an estate.I currently have the saloon(190) as I thought I may load it up with all sorts and wreck the trim!

Forgot to say I only had the car a few months , while waiting for my saloon,

This thread was discussed between 08/07/2003 and 09/07/2003

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