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MG MGF Technical - Advice for new TF135 owner


New the the forum and I've just bought a TF135, 2003 model. Tried to register, but the company firewall won't let me.

Iíd like to give it a service so I know where Iím starting at. I like to ask the forum a few questions;-

Firstly, Is there a FRAM filter for the TF135? I like FRAM filters, as Iíve used them for many years on other cars. I plan to put in Castrol Edge 0W-30, any issues?

Secondly, Brakes, any opinions on the HI-SPEC up rated disks and callipers? The rotor is 285x22mm with a ĎPrincessí billet 4 pot calliper. The standard brakes seem only just up to the job. The 285mm would fit easily in my standard 15Ē wheels, but does the calliper foul? I donít want the extra expense of 16Ē wheels and tyres.

Lastly, for now! Iíve also seen the GAZ spring/damper kit. Iíve had GAZ dampers before and they are excellent, but the spring/dampers do have to Ďmatchí the car. So someone who has had this kit may be able to tell me if is is suitable or not.

Thanks in advance, Iím already enjoying the TF, itís a bit of a dream car for me and after two days a canít stop smiling!!
Denis B

Congratulation on buying the car

I donít know what a FRAM filter is but the oil should be 10w/40.

Before you rush out and go mad with the brakes it maybe worth servicing them to make sure that they are working properly, the rears have a habit of the pads sticking off. Also consider upgrading the pads.

I looked at the HI-SPEC disks and came to the conclusion that they were slightly too big however produces a 280mm disk that uses the OEM callipers and these are said by many to be as good as the big AP brakes of the 160/SP2.
C Tideswell

Hi Denis,

Welcome to the BBS! :o)

I've not come across FRAM filters in MGs either (some more info on them here:

But there are other alternatives from Green (and possibly K&N too - they list a panel filter for the ZR160, which has the same airbox as the TF135). If you want to go the whole hog, enclosed cone filter induction kits are available, typified by the ITG Maxogen. Cost a few pennies though.

285mm HiSpec rotors and calipers do fit under VVC 15" 5-spoke alloys - although I don't know about the 15" 8- square spoke wheels fitted to the TF135. Should fit - but I don't think that anyone has done this - most people are going down the AP Racing route, and with brake kits (calipers and rotors) going for 300, you can hardly blame them, although new wheels also need to be costed for).

If going for HiSpec, I'd probably buy from one of the third-party suppliers - dealing with HiSpec direct can be a little fraut going by what has been posted on the net over the years...

No experience with GAZ on TF - is this the MGF Centre kit? The adjustable spring pans look useful for tuning ride height :o)

Leda also do a kit for the TF, as does Mike Satur.

MGOC have started selling Bilstein dampers designed by the MG Rover engineers originally responsible for the TF - and now outside the mass-manufacture cost constraints have specified the dampers they would most liked to have seen for the car. Again, I haven't tried this, but it should be excellent (I've heard good things!)
Rob Bell

Thank you for the reply all.

Rob, the FRAM filter is for the oil not air, my mistake in not specifying, sorry! Iíve ordered a K&N from my local parts bloke in the village, but itís not arrived yet. I donít believe K&N are the best at removing small dust, but they do have less resistance.

I defiantly donít want to go down the route of 16Ē wheels, due to the initial cost and the higher cost of 16Ē consumable tyres. Iíve looked at the AP site and it looks like the AP kit is only suitable for 16Ē, so I guess my only option is the HI SPEC or Mike Satur kit.

The GAZ kit is off the GAZ web site, I too like the adjustable spring platforms, a must if you put the car on scales, you can move the weight centre and balance the car spot-on. The GAZ dampers are adjustable and have to be Ďmatchedí to the car as Iím sure you know, I donít have a lot of confidence in the retailers who just want to sell stuff. Matching dampers to vehicles is a science all of its own, not just a parts bin trolley dash! I just donít want to be doing someone elseís development work if they are selling me an item that is supposedly fit for purpose. Recommendation is often a very good ďstarter for tenĒ.

Again, thanks for the reply, Iíve been reading the whole of the BBSÖ. Without exception this is by far the best BBS forum on the net! The Ford and TVR groups that Iíve previously posted to could and should take a look at how this forum works!!
Denis B


Check the K&N thoroughly for fit and function because, as far as I am aware, K&N haven't made a filter available for the MG TF airbox.

I believe it has been discussed on this forum before so someone else might be able to confirm my understanding.

David AP

K&N doesn't make a replacement panel filter for the TF (except the 1.6 maybe).
But Green, Pipercross and ITG, at least, do.

This thread was discussed between 04/07/2006 and 12/07/2006

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