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Discussion Starter #1
Hello, newbie SW owner here. Mine is in fairly decent shape and running daily, but the fob doesn't open the boot. I am curious as to whether there is a hidden keyhole or other exterior way to access? Have searched my manual to no avail. Your advice/help appreciated.
 

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2006 MG ZR +120 (HQM) 2004 MG ZR 105 (IAB)
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No other way to gain access from outside, but there is an emergency access to the tailgate catch from inside.

You need to pry up the button on the top of the drivers side rear seat backrest to release the catch and allow you to lower the backrest and gain access to the loadspace area. Then look at the plastic surround for the upper part of the tailgate catch (the bit mounted to the tailgate) - you should see a small rounded slot cut out from the top of it. You simply push a suitable screwdriver into this hole to trip the catch to release it.

Once open, I would very carefully check the wiring loom where it passes through the rubber boot at top right of the tailgate aperture - the loom frequently chafes here and I would suspect a chafed and broken wire may well be the reason for non-operation from the tailgate release button on the fob.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
No other way to gain access from outside, but there is an emergency access to the tailgate catch from inside.

You need to pry up the button on the top of the drivers side rear seat backrest to release the catch and allow you to lower the backrest and gain access to the loadspace area. Then look at the plastic surround for the upper part of the tailgate catch (the bit mounted to the tailgate) - you should see a small rounded slot cut out from the top of it. You simply push a suitable screwdriver into this hole to trip the catch to release it.

Once open, I would very carefully check the wiring loom where it passes through the rubber boot at top right of the tailgate aperture - the loom frequently chafes here and I would suspect a chafed and broken wire may well be the reason for non-operation from the tailgate release button on the fob.
Again, thanks very much. I wonder which Dunderhead at Rover decided not to fit an outside keyhole...
 

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2006 MG ZR +120 (HQM) 2004 MG ZR 105 (IAB)
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Not a 'dunderhead' at all - the tailgate button was deleted for two main reasons:

Firstly, it was a further step in giving the facelift 25/ZR a Thatcham Cat 1 security rating (they were previously only cat 2)..

..and secondly, it saved a significant amount of money over the longer term, which was very important for a company that was was already teetering on the edge of bankruptcy when the facelift cars were launched.

Of course, even an external release button is of little consequence if the cable/actuator rod has become detached, the actuator has failed, the catch itself has jammed or seized, the linkage on the external button has rusted and seized or the lock barrel itself is seized through lack of usage - all of which are problems that have been known to occur with tailgate release systems (and not just on Rovers either!). At least the facelift cars had provision made for an emergency release; the earlier cars had not cut out in the plastic around the catch to allow access to trip the catch, so are more difficult to release when the external tailgate button fails to operate the catch.

Technozen did discover that there is a pin-out on the Pektron SCU fitted to the facelift cars which was for operating a dash mounted tailgate release button, but MG Rover never utilised this - probably because of the extra cost of a switch and wiring to operate it (even though there would have been a space in the dash console switch panel for such a switch, unless the car had front fogs, air conditioning and the very rarely specified Trafficmaster SmartNav, the communication switch for which was mounted in the sole remaining space in the console). However, even with a dash mounted release, it wouldn't help if the tailgate loom is damaged, the relay in the SCU failed, the actuator failed or the catch seized.
 
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