This is a definitive thread for those who are new to modifying Rovers and MG's.
I will put down all that I have learned from these forums, and urge others to do the same.
Wheels - Bubble 200/25/ZR
Anything up to 17" will fit fine without lowering.
With lowering 17's may rub at the rear under full load (1 driver + 3 passengers)
18's and 19's will also fit, but will almost certainly require arch work
The widest recommended width for wheels is 7.5"
The correct size PCD for 200/25/ZR wheels is 4 x 100. With an offset of ET38-45.
Induction Kits - K-series
K&N 57i and Pipercross open filters are great for noise, but lousy for performance.
If you require performance, a closed kit is advised (Pipercross Viper, Taipan II etc). Alternatively you can use an old Rover 820 airbox and surround your K&N 57i providing all the benefits of an enclosed system.
For a cheaper option, a panel filter will provide nearly as good a gain as an enclosed kit, but with less than quarter of the cost.
Suspension - Bubble 200/25/ZR
If you want to lower 30-35mm there is a wide variety of springs available to provide the desired drop. I personally recommend AVO lowering springs for the MGZR.
It is recommended that you do not go lower than 35mm on OE dampers, they just wont last like that.
If you want to drop lower than 35-40mm, then coilovers is the only real option available. Again there is a good choice of kits available.
A cheaper, but very good option is ZR dampers and springs. These can be had on Ebay for very reasonable money. The full setup should lower your car by 15-20mm. The handling will be greatly improved also.
Tuning - K-series
In short, there is no point tuning the 1.1 or 1.4 variants, for the money involved, you might aswell get a bigger engine (1.6, 1.8, 1.8vvc or 2.0turbo T-series)
Due to the K-series being popular in kit cars and motorsport there are a lot of tuning companies around (eg www.dvapower.co.uk
It may take a while but I'm sure you'll find one within driving distance of you.
If you want BIG power (200+bhp) an engine conversion is the best way to go, the T-series is a reputable engine with up to 700bhp possible (The mental guys at ANR have proven that!).
Again many companies can do this...
TURBOING A 1.4 IS POINTLESS!! JUST GET A FASTER CAR!
This isn't technically true. While its a very expensive way of getting a little extra power, it is possible to see 130+bhp from turboing your 1.4. But once you take into account extra insurance costs, you may find buying a faster car the better option.
Exhaust - All models
In my personnal opinion the best way to go with exhausts is custom.
They don't cost as much as you think, at least inquire. you may be surprised
Otherwise there are many off the shelf parts available (eg Janspeed, Scorpion, Rage etc)
Tailpipe designs are ENTIRELY up to you, it's your car no one elses do it to your style.
If your on a tight budget a backbox will do just fine.
If you want to splash out a little a cat-back system is overall the better option.
Persoanally, I would stay away from "universal" backboxes. What you save in price, you make up for in bad looks and costs of fitting.
The cost of your exhaust all depends on what you want.
Looks and sound, a £180 backbox will do great.
Performance, looks and sound. You'll really need a £300+ cat back system.
Extreme preformance, looks and sound. You'll need Manifold, sport cat, and cat back system. £800+
Spoilers - All Rovers and MGs
MG spoilers are an attractive way of adding style to your Rover. They go on Ebay VERY frequently, if there is none on there just check back the next week.
You can fit spoilers like this...
Zr spoiler onto a Rover 200/25. 3 or 5dr, they share the same bootlid.
ZS spoiler onto a Rover 400/45 The saloon and hatch ones are not easily interchangable. It would be possible to make them fit, but it would be difficult.
ZT spoiler onto a Rover 75
By all means feel free to cross breed spoilers and cars. People on here have put ZS spoilers on 600s and it looks great. Don't be limited by normality
200 to 25/ZR conversion
It's a lot of work.
you will need:
New bumper, new front wings, new bonnet, new headlights, new bonnet slam panel, new washer bottle filler neck. there is also some electrics to do.
You will also need to find a bodyshop willing to do it
Insurance companies do not like this, as it involves cutting and welding back on structural strong points of the car. If you wish to do this PLEASE CHECK YOUR INSURER FIRST!
20+bhp chip on Ebay
They don't work, and they will also kill your engine. Nuff said.
Not entirely true. Whilst they do work, they will kill your engine.
They trick the ECU into thinking its cold all the time, and the ECU pumps more fuel in to warm the engine (or something like that!). This is bad. Your engine will sieze.
If you really want one, all they are are cheap resistors that can be found at any hardware store.
The variable ones you see, these are just variable resistors.
The "Race mode" ones you see. These are just resistors with an on/off switch.
Brakes - Bubble 200/25/ZR and 400/45/ZS
The most common (and from what I can tell easiest) up grade for the spongy brakes that come on all smaller engines (1.1, 1.4, 1.6 and I think 1.8) is the 262mm upgrade from larger engined Rovers/MGs. It is a straight swap and you can find these parts in the "For Sale" Section or on Ebay.
For more powerful brakes, the 282mm upgrade from ZR160s and ZS180s is an easy one to do.
I know, I know. We all hate it, but it is a legal requirement.
When it comes to insuring a modified car, you should state ALL the mods. Any you have not stated, will be likely to invalidate you cover. If this happens, you will not recieve any money from your insurer to repair/replace your car. Nor will any person you hit.
Third party Fire and theft is only advisable if your car is worth £0-£300. Depending on how much you are willing to lose should the car become a right off.
I know how silly it can be if the car is only worth £50, and you're paying £1000 a year to insure it. Believe me, I've been there.
By paying for the crappy car to be 100% legal, you are building up a NCB (No claims bonus). The more NCB you have the lower your insurance quote is likely to be.
If you hit someone with TPFT cover, you will recieve no money to repair/replace your car, but the person you hit will recieve money to repair/replace theirs.
With TPFT, you will also recieve money if your car is stolen. I think you also recive money if it is damaged without anyone being at fault. But I don't know this.
Fully comp is advised if your car is worth more than you can afford to replace. This is generally more expensive than TPFT cover, but should you hit someone, you will recieve money to repair/replace your car.
In both TPFT and FC, if someone hits you, their insurance will pay for it.
If they are not insured, then you will have a long and painful process getting repair money. This is why you should insure your car. Other people should not have to pay for your ignorance! Of course, I'm not saying anyone on here would do that, but we all know that people do.
Insurance and tuning.
You have two options if you want more power but don't want to pay much. You can tune your car to be fast, or buy a faster car. More often than not, buying the faster car is cheaper in the long run.
Although it seems at first glance that tuning your existing car will be cheaper, chances are its not.
For example, You have a 1.6 Rover 200 Mk3. You want give or take 140bhp. Tuning the 1.6 to this high an output will cost around £2,000. Now, I can't possibly tell you what it will cost you in insurance. Only your insurance company can tell you that. What I can tell you, is insurers HATE tuned cars. Say you were paying £800 a year for the standard 1.6, aftertuning it you could be paying £1,500+
Now, the total cost of that is around £2,700. Thats a lot.
If you were to sell you 1.6 and buy a 200vi (which sell for about £1k I think), you'll have 140bhp straight off the bat. You'll also have better suspension, gearbox and brakes to cope with the power.
Then you'll have to insure it. There is a good chance the insurance will be high. I would say if it was £800 for the 1.6, you're looking at about £1-1.2k for the Vi.
that makes for a total cost of £1,400, minus whatever you sold the 1.6 for.
I know what makes sense to me!
Please feel free to add your bit and correct me on anything I have missed or stated incorrectly. Please post constructive posts only. Thank you
PS-I know I have stuck mostly to 200's 25/ZR's but they're all I know about!
(Just an idea but possibly a "Sticky" thread?)