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1977 Vauxhall Cavalier MK1 1.9GL - Slammed, fat-tyred "patina" special!


Rick-Manta
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Howdy partners! I'm looking to sell my MK1 Cav saloon as I potentially have another Manta (number 14) and it's going to need the garage space. I bought this off Carl (MrCarlos) a few years back and it has been a brilliant car that I even used as my daily driver for about 8 months and did the London-Brighton run about 5 months ago. Being tax and MOT exempt, it only cost me classic car insurance and fuel to run, so is surprisingly cost effective to have on the road.

Even though it's a 4-door saloon, it does turn heads; sometimes people confuse it for an Ascona, but in most cases they're looking at its "rat" or patina look, as most upper facing panels have a light but all over coating of rust due to how it was stored for many years. Carl supplied the car to me with an MOT and there are no structural issues and only bits of patchwork welding on the underside, rear of the sills and front valance, with new brakes and a rather low spring and shock set. I upgraded the rostyles with a set of Ascona and Manta SR ATS Classic 13" alloys and have new Nangkang 205mm wide tyres, although most of the work I've done was on the engine, that already had a new camshaft and subsequent head skim and gasket to fit. I replaced the points, distributor cap, rotor, coil and plugs with Bosch parts and have the KV85 red Magnecor HT leads. I have fitted a brand new Weber DGV carb, new water pump, fuel pump, upgraded the radiator with a alloy one and found some new red silicone hoses to compliment it. I have an early B SR steering wheel too, that I currently don't have a horn centre for, but will endeavour to find one prior to sale.

There's also a fair bit of history with it, albeit not complete, with a couple of 70s invoices and early service stamps. However it does have all its tax discs and MOTs, as well as all the recent years servicing and invoices, original manual and books. It's had an oil change each year I had it and obviously new coolant with the new rad and pump. A previous owner has put a bit of pipe in the head as an oil level raiser to protect the new camshaft. I have a chrome GTE rocker cover with a pipe to vent to atmosphere, as if you connect it to the inlet, it'll smoke on start up--this isn't valves or piston rings, it's the higher oil level being drawn through the breather system. I did plan to fit a catch tank, so you may want to consider one.

Work to do wise, obviously the car looks inherently tatty and would not really be worth the cost of the extensive prep work required prior to a respray. You could possibly do this yourself, but I'd rather not raise expectations. The car is reliable and drives, but a couple of times the fuses have gotten hot and melted a small part of the box, so there are improvements to be made to the wiring. I think it's related to the heater fan, as it works intermittently, so I keep the battery disconnected when in storage and have a removed a few of the non-essential fuses. The starter, alternator and distributor electrics all function fine. By the end of the Brighton run, the clutch did start to make a whirr noise when it was engaged, that I thought might be the thrust/release bearing, however it seems to have gone away now and might have just been the stop-start nature at certain points at the event. 

The car is located in Witney, Oxfordshire. I live just outside Witney, but can liase with a transporter guy if you're too far to collect. I've advertised it elsewhere for £4k, but to club and forum members I'd be willing to take a lot less than that, knowing it's not going to some yob or "drift" enthusiast.

You can see videos of the car being driven and worked on, on Youtube: @boilerhousegarage and there's a few pictures on my Facebook advert below. Thanks..

https://www.facebook.com/commerce/listing/469258588408080/?media_id=0&ref=share_attachment

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