Our Cars : Project Tomcat Turbo

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Update: 23 May 2009

Tomcat's now tucked up in the garage awaiting some TLC
Tomcat's now tucked up in the garage awaiting some TLC

It’s been a busy few weeks at AROnline Towers. The Tomcat’s MoT has now expired, and that’s meant that we can now stop enjoying the rolling, and get on with the restoration. But in time honoured tradition, it’s now in a bit of a stack of projects thanks to the impending arrival of our Polish Rover SD1 restoration. In fact, we’ve just enjoyed a flying visit to Poland to see the car in its near-completed form, and it’s very exciting indeed.

Making a bit of space in my garage for the Rover SD1 was now something of a priority, and that meant a chat with my mate Trevor Hallworth. He’s well known within AROnline as a lover of and rescuer of Rover R8s, and as well as owning one of our nicest CoTMs, he has a penchant for Tomcats. Especially Turbos.

He’s been keeping my ex-Staples2Naples Rover 216GTI warm, having put right all of its niggles in the process, and it only seemed fair to entrust our project car to him while we focused our attention on the SD1. So, with a heavy heart I delivered the Kevin’s Tomcat to Trevor, and discussed the restoration. The drive down to Kent was wonderful, and it reminded me of just how much potential these cars have – and how a few niggles are enough to really colour your opinion of a car. The wind noise around the targa panels being a case in point – and how easy it should be to put them right. Still it was down to Trev to sort out now…

He prodded the rusty bits, looked around the engine, and made a mental list of things to do. The alternative AROnline economy mean no cash changed hands, and I took possession of my old 216GTI for transport home. I think we were both smiling.

Trevor parked the Turbo in his garage, and we plotted the next step. But you’ll have to wait to see what that is.

A flush of coolant and some investigation needed.
A flush of coolant and some investigation needed.
Some of the exhaust is going to need replacement.
Some of the exhaust is going to need replacement.
Shire-horse T-Series engine is essentially sound, aside from the usual leaks.
Shire-horse T-Series engine is essentially sound, aside from the usual leaks.
Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

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