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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I am new to this forum and also new to considering buying an MG. My basic car history is owning Lancia Delta's and Alfa Romeo's 155/156s, so I do have a basic knowledge of mechanics and the right end of a spanner!

I am considering buying an MG ZS 180, 2003 registered, although I could do with a little bit of advice from you experts prior to purchasing if you don't mind! I can give you all the Alfa Romeo advice you want in the world, but I am a little bit in the dark when it comes to MG Rover !!!

The car I am looking at is a very nice example, although there are some things that are concerning me. Firstly, there is a nasty rattle that is coming from the top end of the engine. I have done a bit of research, and from what I can understand, the Rover KV6 engine has issues with the inlet manifold and the VIS motors??? I contacted my local MG Rover specialist (Executive Motoring Services in Kent) and from what I can remember they quoted me £600+vat for a new inlet manifold and something like £90 for the VIS motors, but please don't quote me on that! Is it possible to get the inlet manifolds reconditioned, and if so, where? Also where am I able to buy a set of VIS motors (how many are there?!?) too?

Something that is also bewildering me is the cambelts' change interval. 6 years or 90,000 miles?!? How do they work that one out?! Are the cambelts prone to premature failure on these engines (like the Alfa V6s!)?! According to the service book that comes with the car that I am looking at, this has been done, although I did ask the owner and he said that it hadn't been done!

I have also read about problems with the clutches on these cars, and something to do with the hydraulics - is this correct? I couldn't quite get my head around what the common problems are, although it did mention something about the bleed nipples on the clutch circuit?

Any other information/advice would be greatly appreciated. Fuel consumption isn't a major issue, although what are the average figures you guys are getting? And also are the headgasket failures less common than in the K-series?!?!?

Thanks in advance,
Anthony.
 

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R.I.P [The Red Zed] MG ZS 180
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Hi and welcome to XPF.

Andy and Ralph fron EMS are probablyh your best bet on this.

They may even know the history of your car
 

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YELLOW PERIL
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Hi and :welcome:

EMS have been maintaining and servicing MG's for years, always helpfull.

You can get bargain 180's at the moment so I would have a look around, try a few to get the feel of what a good one sounds and goes like. Get a well sorted one with the belts done, or knock a few hundred off the asking price.

Best of luck with the search.

:wave:
 

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If you think the VIS motors may be shot at any stage, i really do recommend that you have a go at fixing them yourself, its ridiculously easy. So easy infact that even I managed it.
And when they are working, you'll find yourself trying to get that extra kick at ~3k rpm everytime, but that doesnt exactly do wonders for your fuel consumption...

Coming from Lancias and Alfas, a ZS is probably the most reliable thing youve ever owned :-D
 

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Discussion Starter #6
OK thanks for the advice guys.

Have these EMS boys got a website then? Obviously MGs are all new to me, so haven't got any info or contacts as of yet!

Actually you say that about Alfa's and Lancia's, I have owned three Delta's and three Alfa's. All have been totally reliable. Yes the 156 does have a comical front suspension set up, although it does work and they really do drive spot on. Believe it or not, the worst car I ever actually owned was a Rover 214 cabriolet, and also the most unreliable! But then again, I was an idiot for buying it in the first place!

I currently own a 3.0 Alfa 156 V6, so I noticed the difference in torque and power straight away between the Alfa and MG, although the chasis does feel much better on the MG, and I would say that the MG also gives a much more entertaining drive, but something in my head is forcing me to avoid them, not sure what - maybe it's the fact that my best insurance quote for an MG ZS 180 on a 53 plate is over £550! That's with 7 years no claims, a clean license that I have held for 8 years and 26 years old. The tax is also around £50 a year more expensive!
 

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R.I.P [The Red Zed] MG ZS 180
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Something that is also bewildering me is the cambelts' change interval. 6 years or 90,000 miles?!? How do they work that one out?! Are the cambelts prone to premature failure on these engines (like the Alfa V6s!)?! According to the service book that comes with the car that I am looking at, this has been done, although I did ask the owner and he said that it hadn't been done!


Anthony.
What? 90k or 6 years is 50% more than some cars it hardly what I would call premature!

I would always change the belts on any car I buy, even if the stamp is in the book it might not have had the thermostat and water pump changed and the water pump is a fairly stressed member on the KV6, the stat has a life span of 4 years according to some.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
No sorry what I meant was I thought 6 years or 90,000 miles was a pretty strange calculation!

Where would be the best place to purchase these parts then, like the water pump and thermostat and cambelt kit etc? I know Alfa have a few specialist places to buy these bits, but obvioulsy not sure for MG Rover!?
 

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Well mine is 6 years old in November and has covered 93k so its worked out about right for my car, its 15k a year average which is bang on what my company car does.

Buy the belt kit from any motor factors, I used an INI belt kit and an FIA pump, I got the thermostat from a bloke in SA who makes a metal replacement, the plastic standard item is rated to last 4 years if used in temperatures above 85C.

If the stamp in the book is a reputable place like Lates or EMS then your good to go but if its a dodgy back street or even a non Rover specialist then get it done again as corners will have been cut, my mate works for Nissan and swears blind he only ever changed 1 belt when he did a KV6.
 

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It's a big fan
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No sorry what I meant was I thought 6 years or 90,000 miles was a pretty strange calculation!

Where would be the best place to purchase these parts then, like the water pump and thermostat and cambelt kit etc? I know Alfa have a few specialist places to buy these bits, but obvioulsy not sure for MG Rover!?
6 years is how long it takes the chemicals in oil to destroy the strength of the belt, 90,000 miles is how far the belt can travel around the pulleys before loosing its strength, the two numbers are not really related. Expected life is around 50% more.

You can always get the parts from a dealer such as www.rimmerbros.co.uk
 
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