Xsara VTS - Saved from the wrecker
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Thread: Xsara VTS - Saved from the wrecker

  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger! Bluey's Avatar
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    Default Xsara VTS - Saved from the wrecker

    I was at my local wreckers two months ago to get a part off a Xantia that I had been sourcing parts off for the past 2 years only to discover that it had been prematurely scrapped. They told me they had another Xantia in their special yard out the back and took me to have a look.

    It only took a split second to realise it was a late model Xsara and a VTS to boot. Paintwork, interior and engine bay all looked quite good. They couldnít tell me what was wrong with it and couldnít find the key to start it. We spent an hour sifting through boxes of car keys looking for the right one but to no avail.

    Last week I got a call to say they found the key under the sunvisor. They had replaced the fuel pump and it was driving but the alternator wasnít charging. I took it for a drive around the yard. The top end of the motor was noisey but straight away I could tell the suspension, steering & brakes were solid. It was too good to wreck. I made an offer.









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    Positives:
    Late 03/04 front bar with fog lights.
    90% of dents will come up paintless.
    Both window regulators work. Yippee!
    Seat bolsters in good condition and interior relatively clean.
    Gearstick in excellent condition.
    Excellent suspension, steering, brakes, clutch & gearbox.
    Original radio.
    Paintwork and interior not really showing their age.
    A/C appears to be functional.

    Negatives:
    Scratches all over the dash plastics and decals flaking.
    Broken dash vent.
    Steering wheel leather in bad condition.
    Lifting door lids.
    Front bar has scrapes and needs paint to fix.
    Dent in driverís side rear quarter will need the trim strip replacing and paint to repair.
    Faded headlights.
    Sagging bonnet lining.
    Missing battery box cover.
    Wrong battery.
    Paint on mirrors is faded in typical Xsara fashion.
    Engine has top end noise and needs investigating however starts, runs & idles cleanly.
    2 average quality tyres (BF Goodrich) and two junk tyres (Triangles).
    Issue with the charging system. It appears the car already has a replacement Valeo alternator fitted. Not promising.

    Not a hundred percent sure what Iím going to do with the car but I have a bunch of 306/Xsara performance parts lying around and it would be nice to have a customer loan car. The aim is to have it properly roadworthy and registered by mid 2019.

    Plan is to start off with interior work as itís low cost, low labour intensity and convenient. As soon as I have space in the workshop and all the parts ready waiting Iíll pull the motor for some maintenance work.

    Planned modifications so far:
    GTi6 gearbox
    Large rear anti-roll bar
    Lynx Power Engineering spherical bearing front LCA bushes
    Strut brace
    Exhaust as a minimum. Possibly a set of extractors.
    Peter T stage 1 cams
    Endurance race pads & slotted rotors
    Front splitter
    Last edited by Bluey; 31st October 2018 at 07:59 AM.

  2. #2
    1000+ Posts bowie's Avatar
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    Default

    I remember seeing my first ever,

    It was going into the Video shop at Old Bar. It was black, and it didn't look like any other coupe I had ever seen. I was immediately in love with them.

    The VTS is going to be my one day car.

    Good on ya for saving it Bluey!

    Works: 1999 Volvo S40 T4, (has Choo Choo's)
    Playing: R12, SuperPos, thinks It's a race car.
    Previous: SuperGrumpy fuel spitting 504ti(ish), SuperComfortable 505 STI, SuperDoper carried my groceries Mi16
    Wanted Ye old K4J / K4M Click!

    "More and more of less and less" - Marina Abramović

  3. #3
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    Looks good.

    Watch the sills. On mine the suddenly opened up due to rust. Most of the front end were transplanted into a Berlingo Multispace. Doesent handle just as good but have suprised quite a few.

  4. #4
    UFO
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    Quote Originally Posted by ReidarUF View Post
    Looks good.

    Watch the sills. On mine the suddenly opened up due to rust. Most of the front end were transplanted into a Berlingo Multispace. Doesent handle just as good but have suprised quite a few.
    ReidarUF, the salting/gritting of European roads causes all your local cars to rust to death. It is extremely rare that salt/grit is used on Australian roads, which is why so many Euro cars last so long here.
    Craig K
    2009 C5 HDi Exclusive

  5. #5
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    306 go fast bits, please tell me more????
    87 S1 205 GTI / GTI6 powered a project underway
    306 convertible (gti6 candidate)
    307 HDi wagon
    407 HDi wagon

  6. #6
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    You are absolutely right about the salt Craig and among the European countries the west coast of Norway is the worst.

    I wouldnt change the VTS gearbox. It is a stronger unit than that on the GTI6 and suit the engine well. Check out the 306 lower balljoints for some more positive camber.

  7. #7
    Fellow Frogger! Bluey's Avatar
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    Made some time to work on the Xsara today. Pulled out the fuel pump to check its condition and installation. Happy to say itís in excellent condition. The old pump is locked solid and covered in corrosion. Iím wondering if thatís from ethanol.



    The fuel smells old and there are small bits of debris all through the tank. Going to rig up an external pump to suck the tank dry then wipe it out.


    Hoodlining has decomposed and doesn't have enough rigidity to stay located on the bonnet so it's in the bin.


    Started removing parts from the engine bay in anticipation of removing the engine including the grill, coil pack cover and timing cover. Timing belt is ridiculously under tensioned, every oil seal on the side of the motor is leaking as well as the water pump and the clutch cable is rubbing on the driveshaft boot. At least the balancer hasn't slipped, (according to the marks).


    Curiosity got the better of me and I removed the cam covers to be greeted by oil gunk and two damaged camshafts. Both are the result of lack of oil changes. I wouldnít be surprised if the oil spray bars are blocked. At least I have an explanation for the top end noise. Itís bad enough not to warrant starting the engine again so the car is parked in the shop awaiting engine removal.

  8. #8
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    At least it its in good hands!

    When I opened mine after maggot had it, fuel pump was in bits, filter gauze rusted away, tank / fuel stank had varnish like yours and the sender was missing, so you are better off than me too!

    Give it a rinse with acetone, it likes varnish! Don't inhale the fumes though.
    87 S1 205 GTI / GTI6 powered a project underway
    306 convertible (gti6 candidate)
    307 HDi wagon
    407 HDi wagon

  9. #9
    Fellow Frogger! Bluey's Avatar
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    The engine situation has gone from bad to worse.


    Those are coolant crystals that have formed around a hole in the centre muffler.

    Motor is out.


    It takes talent to fit a bolt like this.


    One of the Welch plugs has been replaced with a brass plug. Don't people know anything about electrolysis? The swamp water I drained out of the engine was no different in colour to the mud splattered over the back of the block.


    Needless to say, the motor needs a full rebuild. Tossing up between fitting the motor out of the written off 306 I have or rebuilding this. I have a full set of bearings, rings & seals on the shelf and a spare set of low kilometre lifters. The stage 1 camshafts I thought I had have already gone into a customer's motor but these are a perfect candidate for a regrind. I've worked out the difference in price between the swap and the rebuild is a head gasket and cylinderhead service. Will make a decision after I get over the dissappointment.

  10. #10
    1000+ Posts cam85's Avatar
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    Dang!

    Why these cars are so neglected sometimes is beyone me.

    Youll have it together by Wednesday right?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ReidarUF View Post
    You are absolutely right about the salt Craig and among the European countries the west coast of Norway is the worst.

    I wouldnt change the VTS gearbox. It is a stronger unit than that on the GTI6 and suit the engine well. Check out the 306 lower balljoints for some more positive camber.
    Yes, the 5 speed is an advantage over the GTi6.

  12. #12
    Fellow Frogger! Bluey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    Yes, the 5 speed is an advantage over the GTi6.
    Why??

  13. #13
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    Turning circle and the 6 speed is a pain for normal driving you just skip every second gear.
    dmccurtayne and UFO like this.

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