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MG MGF Technical - Brighter Headlights

Hi all

I have really noticed over the last few weeks now the nights and weather are closing in, how crap the dipped beam headlights are on my 97VVC .. I splashed out and bought some of the supposedly 30% brighter ones from Halfords but to be honest they don''t seem much better..

Anyone have any solutions ?

Are the lights better on the TF ??

And if so are they interchangeable ?

Just a thought ?

cheers all



Hi Stu,
I heard that lights on TFs are heaps better. David Richard in NZ had F to TF conversion not long ago, and he mentioned how good the new lights were.

I just got some blue-vision from Philips, but since it didn't say it would enhance any vision... I am not expecting much. Have you also tried re-aligning the lights?

If you want to use TF lights, you will need to do a bumper conversion to TF as well.

Hanah Kim


Are the dip lens turning milky....? this is a common problem reducing efficiency, but I believe there is a cheap methof of rectifying this, means removing the bumper and dismantling the headlamps, not too sure of the web liink though. I think Andy (scarlet) will know.

I'm tinking of the philips bulbs too. A bit simpler than replacing the lens;)

tim woolcott


How do you clean the milkyness? Luckily David Richard has sent me his old damaged lights, and they both had clean ones, but I also want to know how to clean the old ones?

Or you mean just take them out?

Thanks Tim


(P.S. haven't tested blue lights yet)
Hanah Kim

Wasn't Mike working on some gas discharge replacement units for the F?

Yep - ony about 700.00 for the pair!

Ted Newman

>> <<

This is how to spray paint your inner relectors, but to do so you need to dismantle the headlamps so the instructions for removing the inner lens is part of it.

Onece removed what do you do with it? My lights are (touch wood) fine, although from day one they could have been brighter.

IMO the solution is additional driving lamps, but i have yet to find a way of fitting them that doesn't either:

a) look crap.


b) impede air flow to the radiator.

The best i have seen is the MGF rally car's bonnet mounted bank of 4 lamps, but this is a functional item and looks it. Would need refining before it would make a suitable aftermarket item.

Micro projector lamps behind the grill look OK, but although the lens tends to be fairly small, the back fittings are a bit bulky, enough to make me wonder what they do to the cooling airflow to the radiator.

Anyway, food for thought...


I remember someone here actually replacing the inner lens, there is a very obscure part number somewhere. Cleaning didn't seem to work I remember.

May be Rob Knows?....Rob...!
tim woolcott

I bought the Halfords bulbs too and found they were no brighter than ordinary bulbs. I made them refund my money by putting the old bulb back in ones side and demonstrating to them that there was no difference.

I am thinking of fitting high wattage bulbs as the battery is conveniently close by.

Just dont get those bloody blue strobe lamps, always think the police are behind me.

>Are the lights better on the TF ??

Much. You can see where you are going! :)

I did lessen the problem on my previous F by adjusting the lights up slightly - though not high enough to start dazzling other road users.
Paul Lathwell

>>I remember someone here actually replacing the inner lens, there is a very obscure part number somewhere. Cleaning didn't seem to work I remember.<<

Tim, I had a quick scan through the archives, but couldn't find it (the outer glass is there - but not much use to us :o( )

If there is a part number, I'd love to have it too - otherwise Jason @ Midland MGF is going to be recieving a call in due course...
Rob Bell

No I don't think there is a separate part no. for the inner lenses. That's what I remember from the past.

Lucky that I asked David Richard for his damaged lights. His inner lenses are clean as and I can see through them. Mine is rather yellow and opague..
Hanah Kim

I've had a trawl through the archive but can't find it either.... I'm pretty sure about there being a part number, could it be for a Rover 200 or some other model....?

Rob, I nealy bought a pair of headlight innards when I saw Jason last week D'oh :o(
tim woolcott

>>Rob, I nealy bought a pair of headlight innards when I saw Jason last week D'oh :o( <<

Double D'oh!!! (_8(I)
Rob Bell

Can you leave the innards out completely or does the glass act as a lense...

Just an idea?


The inner glass is the lens that deflects the light pattern Stu - so no, it can't be left out, sadly :o(
Rob Bell


Get back to your studies - will see you on WE of 09/11 and show you how to improve you low beam.


There is no way of improving tge eadlights on the F. The inner lenses will go milky and the light output drops off . I tried 100watt bulbs - still bad. If you replace the inner lenses - yes there is a part number and if I remember it is in the archive under milky headlights. Featured on this BBS some six months ago.

Due to a front end accident I switched to the TF bumper and headlights. The TF headlights are so far superior than the F. Best job I have done - Safety wise a MUST


David, I have searched and searched for these part numbers in the archive - and to no avail. :o(

I have found the reference to the outer glass cover to the lamps:

XBQ100710 for left hand
XBQ100700 for right hand
Cost is 46.59 + VAT = 54.74 each

... but this is not the part that goes 'milky'.

Anyone actually got the part number???
Rob Bell

I've fitted Osram H1 Silverstar (50% brighter) bulbs to my Trophy and it's certainly made a difference.
Blue Pocket Rocket

Ohh... no parts damn! (if Rob can't find it...)
if anyone is buying a set of headlights for the inner lenses, let me know as some parts that you won't need in the assembly that I might be able to use it well...
and of course I will share the cost.. (I need passenger's side inner plastic part that holds the bulbs, the reflective part, not the part you paint)

David -> hello! :-D thanks for the inner lenses. how is your rear bumper going? (and cross member)

Dennis -> I know.. sad.. I am off to my 3 hour cardio exam in 30 minutes. I think i am ready... just about. Will be glad to see you on Saturday! I am working till 3:40pm. But from then on freeeee/ also I am free between 12 and 2pm. Dennis you sound like you have a lock of tricks up your sleeve... so much to show me on the day!

Best Regards,

Hanah Kim

One question (yay i've just done my cardio exam.. was ok!)

The inner lenses, does the grooved side face outwards? or inwards? Outwards meaning towards the direction of light projection / inwards meaning towards the bulb.

Thanks, I was not sure last time I re-fitted my inner ones.
Hanah Kim

> a lock of tricks = a lot of tricks
Hanah Kim

When is someone going to produce new headlights similar to the TF (projector lights)but will fit the F without having to replace the bumper.

Surely there must be a market out there as how many F owners are forever complaining about the crap headlights which get worst with age.

Tom Randell

Tom that would be nice huh... ;-(
But gas discharge one if it's going to cost 700 pounds, no one is going to bother.
Hanah Kim

Does anyone know how much TF headlights cost?
Tom Randell

210 pounds + VAT for both.
I think..
Hanah Kim

>>When is someone going to produce new headlights similar to the TF (projector lights)but will fit the F without having to replace the bumper.<<

The answer to that is probably 'no one' Tom. :o(

Basically, to tool up for a new lamp unit costs 100,000 sterling - a big investment for what would be a small market; who ever put money into such a project may not even cover their investment, let alone get any return from it...

>>The inner lenses, does the grooved side face outwards? or inwards? Outwards meaning towards the direction of light projection / inwards meaning towards the bulb.<<

Hanah, the grooved side is, I think, on the inside. Best check with Andy, Kingsley and Will.
Rob Bell

How about someone working on converting the TF lights to fit the F. It looks the same shape as the old ones just a little extended to fit the new bumper (and indicator). Providing you can fit the projector lamps into a housing the same size and shape as the F light housing and make sure they can be aligned surely it is possible. Not sure if it is a cost effective method but having to change the bumper to a style I'm still not happy with seems a little extreme to get decent lights.


Rob that's what I thought and how my lights are setup at the moment.. Grooved side towards the car. Hmm, yes I better double check before I replace my inner lenses.

T.E.D. (tony the escort driver, I keep getting confused with Ted), hmm good idea, as long as it fits! But then are we going to have 4 indicators on the front? ;-) Because wiring loom has to be adapted as well... that's gonna cause some pain in the ass.
Hanah Kim

I have looked at TF headlights which have been fitted in cars and what I have seen basically it is the same shape at the back (plastic moulding) but due to the indicator being incorporated it has to be a different shape. With a bit of mucking around could a TF head light be merged with a F headlight.

Maybe I need to get hold of a TF headlight and a F headlight and get a hacksaw out and give it a go.

I am not sure how the wiring is done though.

Tom Randell

Tom, go for it mate - I think that there will be a number of takers if you can figure out a mod that works and looks good. And basically you are right: the TF and MGF lights have identical profiles to the wing and bonnet, the only area of difference being, as you have said, the incorporation of the indicator units.

Don't be too anxious about the wiring - David in NewZealand has managed to get around the compatibility problem - it is a surmountable problem :o)
Rob Bell

IIRC the lense will only fit into the housing one way round. The TF lamps in a F housing idea sounds great, but i bet would be very expensive

>IIRC the lense will only fit into the housing one way round.
Yep*, the embossed bits poking inwards I think

*but if you have two lights 1 is RHS, 1 is LHS, I don't know if you can swap them over by accident
Will Munns

Kingsley and Will thanks for the confirmation.

But when you have 2 inner lenses sitting around, I am sure they can be fitted either way around. :-)

That's right.. Will!
Hanah Kim

A lot of people last year found the Philips Vision Plus were quite good. Another opton is one of the rally bulbs (for off-road use only, of course!).

Quite fancy getting the silver vision indicators for the front, only problem would be removing the front indicators without breaking them!

L Reid

Headlamp glass is replaceable and I even see a kit for the polycarbonate TF as well (although no price - meaning not available)

The headlamp body is NOT available as a separate part in F or TF and they are all listed at the same sort of price which is 101 /102 pounds plus vat. MGF before vin 4351 has a different part number headlamp that is 'only' 89 pounds plus. All assemblies are shown as coming with glass and bulbs.

Roger Parker

This thread was discussed between 27/10/2002 and 02/11/2002

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