AROnline Project : MGF

Keith Adams

A nice easy project
A nice easy project

It’s all change at AROnline. Mike’s picked up a new HHR project (what is he thinking?) and I’ve cashed in my NSU Ro80 (no time, no space, best to avoid disappointment) to get my hands on Richard Kilpatrick’s ‘barn find’ MGF VVC. Regular readers will know all about this one – it was rescued from the indignity of dying a mildewy death under a tree by serial car buyer, Richard, and restored to (near) perfect working order in the process.

That’s where I came in. I made Richard an offer; he accepted and now I have my first ever MGF. I won’t pretend I’ve not been excited by the prospect – and, although I’ll no doubt be fielding questions about my sexuality and profession, I like these cars and this is the perfect season to own one.

What have I let myself in for? Well, so far, very little indeed. Richard has already done the work for me – at a fundamental level –  so I’m left with a few bits and pieces of tidying up. First impressions are good. The engine is smooth, quiet and revs freely, delivering plenty of power in the process. The steering is very light – I’m already considering installing an on/off switch for the EPAS – and the suspension set-up is hyper-sensitive… I love it!

Jobs to do – fit a nice stereo (sorry, Richard!), investigate a couple of odd interior rattles, sort out the dropping driver’s door, maybe look into fitting a glass rear screen and a wind deflector, invest in a coolant level warning (although I will check the level myself every other day) and then… enjoy!

I reckon this will be an easier one. Mind you, I’ve said that before!

Keith Adams


  1. I hope you enjoy this one Keith. We do, at least, now both have something (reasonably) economical for attending Gaydon.

    By the way, can I have your interior mirror? 🙂

  2. I meant to mention one of the rattles – the only one which isn’t obviously down to chittery trim/roof seals or the slightly dropped door. I think it’s the washer hose – it seems very long and just rests above the driver’s footwell. I’m pretty sure that’s the source of the odd tap-tap noise but I couldn’t find any pictures/references for the correct routing – probably needs cable-ties somewhere.

    I greased and tightened the passenger door window – you’ll find the door trims really easy to remove and work on while the inevitable couple of snapped pins should be available from Rimmers easily enough. I hadn’t done anything with the driver’s side as I figured anything being done with that may as well be sorted when fitting new hinge bushes.

    I’m very pleased she’s behaving for you and looking forward to some pictures of her in a new environment. 😀

  3. Welcome to the world of the MGF, Keith! You know it makes sense…

    I have to be honest and say that owning one of these cars is certainly an experience … 🙂 However, I’m sure you already knew what you were potentially letting yourself in for when you purchased the car.

    My F has driven me mad at times this year with really minor, but very annoying problems. These include the odd rainwater leak, minor rattles, a replacement fan heater, a replacement brake light switch and a replacement clock. etc, etc. Most of the problems have been easy to sort out though and at very low cost.

    I’ve taken a certain pride in fixing the faults myself too – and I’m certainly no mechanic! I don’t think I would have put up with these faults on any other car to be honest. It’s because I love driving the F – it put’s a smile on my face every time I drive it. 🙂

    Anyway, Keith, get the roof down and get out there! 🙂

  4. We know who to ask for a shampoo and set on AROnline now…LOL. However, at least you sold the NSU before it bankrupted you. You are a car whore though, Keith.

  5. I’ve now done some bits and pieces and fitted a nice new stereo. I should actually enjoy this car the next time I drive it – assuming it ever stops bloody raining…


  6. What is this ‘rain’ you speak of Keith? Suffolk is like a dustbowl… and has twisty roads to blast along.

  7. 2 BRG MGF in my garage and I love both. Strangely, those VVC models are rare in France and really appreciated by english cars “lovers”. Enjoying french/italian B roads driving a MGF is a true pleasure! Thierry

  8. I feel like commenting here to bring things up to date on the NSU, because that bit has a happy ending.

    I started work slowly on the NSU, but had an accident that really messed life up considerably – and ended up just unable to face the work needed. I felt it required a new front valance and some minor repairs, and I sold it to someone via a car forum, with a lot of regret. I also ended up parting with my Rover 114 Cabriolet for the same cause, though it needed very little doing.

    Over a few months after the sale, the NSU was stunningly restored. It was way beyond anything I could have done, needing repairs to three-layer sections of the floor and still, and Ant completed a sympathetic and thorough restoration. So it’s out there, and hopefully looking great!

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