Spunagain's MG ZT260 Pages

Spunagain's ZT260 pages are under construction.

This page is made up of my own experiences and cullings from the Xpower forums

Buyers Guide

Do everything you would do if buying a second hand car, but here are a few extra pointers for the 260 to avoid some of the common pitfalls.

Before you get in:
Check the paintwork, particularly at the front, as there have been some iffy batches with badly adhering paint jobs. Check the bodywork carefully even if it is a "new" car. These cars are likely to have been stored for a year maybe even 2 and some have not been treated very well - mine has a couple of dings which I didn't notice until after I picked up the car. Check all the tyres for uneven wear; they should wear evenly if the suspension is set up properly. Check the rear tyres for wear on the tyre wall from a potential intruding bolt. The 260 will eat tyres so try and blag a new set if you are buying from a dealer.

Under the bonnet
Pop the bonnet. Look at the alternator belt; just under the alternator look out for black witness marks on the engine block - see photo. This is a sign that the alternator belt may be jumping and the car may be a belt eater like mine. It is too early to say whether this is a real problem but you could use it to blag a spare belt off a dealer. Start the engine (yes it does sound good, but don't lose your head and write the cheque yet!) get the owner to switch the aircon on and off and ensure the belt doesn't jump and that there are no whines (or smoke!) coming from the aircon compressor. Check that the screen wash bottle isn't cracked - fill it to the brim and look for leaks under the car. It is an expensive job to replace as the bumper and headlight has to come out. Check the heater pipe is not on the way out. If the car has sat-nav ensure the CD is the 2005 version latest or haggle! Look out for performance Mods - an Accufab throttle body is worth £300 (shiny and no pony on it) but it will make insurance harder to find and more expensive so get a quote before you buy the car. The car may have a performance filter but you can't really check for this as you have to remove the bumper to get at it! The X-power exhaust is impossible to ignore!

Test drive
Climb in and before you do anything else make sure the climate control works (and not just at full blast). Make sure you can still get the warm air as well as cold air. Also check that when you set a temperature that the car actually gets near the set temperature and you can control the actual temperature up or down. If the climate control doesn't work haggle very, very hard or walk away! (Personally I would walk away an not even part with a deposit until the problem is resolved)

Check for damp carpets - this can be due to block drain pipes or leaky seals and causes consensation and smell in later life (of the car).

Check for a noisy diff a few cars have had to have them replaced early in life under warranty and there are still some new or low mileage cars out there potentially with dodgy diffs. If it is noisy don't accept it! Take the car over some rough roads and tight corners and listen out for any clonks or bangs as the back, the problems are fixable but should be sorted before you accept a car.

Check for rattles particularly from the parcel shelf and door trims. The car should be as solid as a rock.

Listen for clunks when pulling away. There may be a little driveline shunt, but mine doesn't so they don't all do that sir! Clunks could be down to suspension problems or exhaust heat shields, which is an easy fix. Ensure the car pulls away strongly and cleanly even from very low revs.

If everything else checks out haggle and get yourself the performance bargain of the decade! Good luck!

There are many variants of spec out there. Basically there is the SE - all the toys and non-SE which does not have: computer, sat-nav, Posh stereo, electric seats, heated seats, rear electric windows, auto wipers, self dimming mirror, full leather. But there are a few Non SE's that have been built with many of these bits anyway so decide what you really want and look for the car which suits you. The ZTT is rarer than the ZT. Note the SE adds nearly 100kg to the kerb weight and will be slower!

There are one or 2 specials out there; notably the ZTT285 at SMC Slough, which is the only line-built supercharged car. But there may be a handful of MGR development cars with "aftermarket" performance mod factory fitted as experimental cars such as the ZT300 at SMC. Fun but a bugger to insure!

ZT260 page

This web page is designed and maintained entirely by Spunagain.  Please let me know if you have new information or anything here is demonstrably incorrect!

Spunagain <questions@spunagain.co.uk>