Motor Sport-Readers’ Car Survey (Part 2)
With part two of our readers’ car survey we report on the Ford Anglia, the Austin-Healey roo and 3000, the Renault Dauphine and the Austin-Healey Sprite. Unfortunately, due to pressure on space, we have had to omit the Triumph Herald this month but it will be included in the June issue. On pages 316 and 317 we publish some remarks made by representatives of the manufacturers of the VW, the Triumph TR2 and TR3 and the B.M.C. Mini twins, together with some of the more interesting letters we have received from readers on the subject of this Survey. Also on page 343 is a table showing the growing totals of petrol and oil users. This will be added to month by month to give an authoritative guide to the brands of petrol and oil used by readers.
Is service satisfactory? 70.5% of Anglia owners reported themselves satisfied with the service offered, x6.x % were dissatisfied, and 6.5% carry out their own servicing. With Ford’s long reputation for good service and cheap spares one might have expected a larger degree of satisfaction with the service, but many people seem to feel that with the growth of trade, workshop service and skill has deteriorated and become too impersonal.
If car is modified give brief details. Quite a variety of modifications have been made to the Survey Anglias. 2.9% have fitted the tuning kit offered by the Ford Motor Co., whilst 2.6% have fitted anti-roll bars of varying types. Carburetter modifications are most popular, 2.0% fitting S.U.s, 1.8% Solex, 0.8% Webers, 0.6% Zenith, and 1.8% have fitted different jets in the standard carburetter. Modified exhaust systems have been fitted by 3.1%, 2.7% have added the Servals silencer and 1.4% the Burgess silencer. Modified camshafts have been fitted by 2.0% cylinder-head modifications carried out by 3.9%, and stronger valve springs fitted by t4%. The crankshaft from the I,340-C.C. Classic has been fitted to 0.2% and complete Classic engines to o.2%. The Shorrock supercharger has been fitted to o.6% and copper lead bearings to o.6%, although not necessarily the same o.6% I A sports coil is fitted by x %, lowered suspension by o.8%, anti-tramp bracket by 0.2%, lower axle ratio by 0.2%, rev.-counter by 0.2%, Koni dampers by 0.6%, extra instruments by 1.6%, Peco boosters by 1.6%, Norton spark intensifiers by 0.4%, and 0.4% have fitted full Group III Appendix ” J “engines tuned to Formula Junior standards. Wow! 1% have moved the driver’s seat position, whiltt of those that mention the name of a particular conversion, Mangoletsi is mentioned by % and Derrington by 0.4%. ENGINE 2x.2% reported that they had suffered no engine trouble. One of the most common complaints was of a carburetter fiat-spot, 13.9% complaining of this trouble, and a number of people remarking that the carburetter had been replaced free of charge, although this had not always offered a cure; some drivers getting three or four new carburetters. The timing-chain has also caused a good deal of trouble, 12.4% having the chain tensioner replaced, most of them with a modified type. The timing-chain itself has been replaced on 7.1%. The water pump seems to have suffered more than its fair share of troubles, 8.2% requiring replacement, whilst more serious troubles, such as main or big
end bearing failure, were suffered by 2.9 burned valves by 6.7%, tappet trouble, mostly due to soft threads, by 3.1%, broken crankshafts by o.8%, damaged camshafts by 1.6%, broken oil pumps by 3.1%, piston trouble by 2.5%, thermostat trouble by 2.9%, and broken fan belts by 2.2%. As this engine has been in service such a short time major overhauls have been rare; 0.6% have had major overhauls, o.6% have
had replacement engines, x.2% have fitted new cylinder blocks and 0.4% have had replacement cylinder heads. A number of other minor problems have arisen but do not seem to be at all general. These replacements include broken dynamo brackets by 40.4%, sticking and dropped valves by 0.8%, water hoses by 3.1%, broken con,-rods by 0.4%, broken rocker arms by 0.8%, engine mountings by 0.4%, throttle linkage by 0.8%, broken flywheel by 0.2%, distributor skew gear by 0.2%, fan-belt pulley by 1%, exhaust pipe by 0.4%, silencer by 0.2%, various gaskets„ mainly cylinder head, by 9.6%, petrol pump by x.2%, oil leaks by 3.5%, damaged oil seals by x.2%, radiator troubles by 0.4%, whilst 2.2% complained of poor starting, o.8% of roughness and 4.3% of excessive noise. CLUTCH 72.3% reported that they had suffered no major troubles with the Anglia clutch. General complaints were stiffness (0.8%), judder (3.3%), slipping (1.8%), and oil on clutch (2%), although of course some of those who remarked on clutch slip may well have oil on the plates. 2.8% have replaced clutches at mileages between 2,000 and 30,000, although the average seems to be around 14,000. Master cylinder troubles were experienced by 2.8%, slave cylinder by 0.8%, hydraulic leaks by 2.4%. The centre plate has been replaced by 1.2%, the thrust bearing by o.8% and springs by 0.4%. 5.1% remarked that the thrust bearing squeaked on engagement GEARBOX 70.4% expressed satisfaction with their gearbox. Few real troubles were reported but 8.8% felt that the box was too noisy, 6.1% remarked that gear selection is difficult or that the lever jumps out, 1.6% reported on gearbox vibration, 1.4% on stiffness and 1% on roughness. Of actual faults, 1.6% have had replacement gearboxes, 2.0% have had individual gears replaced, broken shafts were suffered by 0.4%, and various bearings by o.6%, slip rings by 0.4%, oil seals by 2.4% and other oil leaks by o.64%.3. %The synchromesh on one or more gears was replaced by
BRAKES 49.2% had no trouble with brakes. General complaints concern grab, pull and snatch, which were reported by 5.3%, the phenomenon usually occurring when the drums are cold. 7.6% remarked that the brakes are noisy, either squealing or squeaking on application, and 3.5% report that the drums let in water too easily, the rear drums apparently being the most susceptible. Brake relining has been carried out by 30.6% at mileages varying between 4,000 and 35,000, but the vast majority seem to have been changed between io,000 and 2o,000 miles. One general complaint was that frequent adjustment was required. 3.5% remarked on this, while 3.1% repotted that their brakes faded.
Brake drums were replaced by z.8%, scored drums by 2.4%, and oval drums were skimmed by 0.4%. The handbrake cable stretched on %, the cotter failed on 0.2%, and a rod broke on o.2%. STEERING 68.2% suffered no steering troubles. The most prolific complaint concerns wheels being out of balance, % mentioning that steering shimmy could only be cured by balancing. In addition, 1.6% remarked on judder, 1.8% on vibration and 2.5% on wobble-no doubt wheel balancing will effect a similar cure for these people. Noises from the steering-box were mentioned by 0.8%, leaks from box were reported by 0.6%, and new steering-boxes were fitted by o.6″,?.,. o.6°,/ remarked that the toe-in was wrongly adjusted and a further o.80/: that the wheels became
misaligned in service. Other troubles are relatively minor, including cracked steering wheels by 0.6%, steering-idler troubles by 1%, new sector shaft on 0.4%3 and steering column replaced by 0.2%.
SUSPENSION No trouble was experienced by 70.6%. Actual faults were usually rather minor, 1.8% of wheel bearings being changed, o.8% of dampers being replaced, whilst 0.6% reported damper leaks. Excessive noise was mentioned by 2.4%, tramp by 1.4%, rear axle hop by 3.1% and softness by 3,5%.
INSTRUMENTS 67% reported no trouble with instruments. As seems most usual with instruments, the speedometer proved the most unreliable, 6.3% of speedometer cables being replaced and 11.3% of speedometer heads being changed. Of the remainder 7.3% of petrol gauges failed, 3.3% of temperature gauges, % of oil-pressure warning lights, 0.6% of dynamo warning lights and r% of odometers, whilst 2.3% considered that the car possessed insufficient instruments.
ELECTRICAL 21.4% suffered no electrical trouble at all. There have been numerous electrical troubles with the Anglia but several failures have often resulted from one particular fault, for there are no fuses on this car and a number of fires in the wiring harness have resulted from this; in fact, 5.1% reported this fault. Some of the 6.5% of battery failures and 3.5% of dynamo failures in less than 2i years may well be attributable to the fact that the automatic voltage control was set incorrectly on delivery or burnt out in service on 4.9% of the survey cars. A number of bulb failures were attributed to the fact that water seeped into the number-plate light and brake-light housing. Starter motor failures were suffered by 3.3%, distributor by 1.4%, door courtesy light switch by 8.4%, heater by 1.4%, heater fan by 1.8%, dipswitch by 6.9%, horn by 1.8%, and coil by o.8%. The windscreen-wiper motor failed on 7.9%, the winking indicators on 17.5%, and ignition switch on x.8%.
FINAL DRIVE 73.2% suffered no actual troubles with the rear axle. Of general complaints x2.5% mentioned excessive noise, 2.4% mentioned a clonk on take up, 2.9% mentioned play, and 3.9% reported whine. Oil seals were replaced on 1.4% and the crown-wheel and pinion on 2.2%. Otherwise the rear axle seems to have been extremely reliable. BODYWORK 23.2% had no faults to find with the bodywork of their cars. The most serious fault and also the most common is the breakage of a small spring in the door locks, which often allows the doors to fly open. This was reported by 26.1%, and many mentioned that the spring is worth 4d. or 6d. but that the garage charge to repair the lock runs from t2s, 6d. to over Li. The next most common complaint was the ingress of water into the interior, 22.3% reporting this defect. The water appears to find its way through in several places but the windscreen surrounds seem to be the main culprits. The poor standard of chromium plating is reported by 14.9%, and 12,9% mention poor paintwork, many of these having had partial or complete resprays carried out, whilst a further ri% specifically mentioned rusting of the body work. The window winders came in for a good deal of criticism, having trouble with these, many people remarking that the windows jam when wet. Broken boot hinges were
suffered by 3.9%, door pulls by 4.9%, rubber door seals by 2.9%, whilst 5.9% mentioned that trim panels fall off and 2% that external badges come off too easily. 8.4% reported that the doors dropped and became difficult to close, and 2.9% suffered from split seats or broken seat springs. Broken door check straps were reported by 1.5%, glove-box lids by 1%, whilst 2.8% mentioned that they considered the bodywork was too thin.
OTHER SERIOUS DEFECTS Few troubles which have not already been mentioned were brought out in this section, but 4.5% commented on the carburation flat-spot, 1.6% on the short exhaust system life, 1% on wheel bearings, and 1% on insufficient seat adjustment, while o.8% expressed their regret at the lack of a starting handle.
TYRES Fords supply several makes of tyre as standard equipment, so the range of tyres are more evenly distributed than on some makes. 31% have Goodyear tyres, 25.2% Firestone, to.6% Michelin, 7.9% India, 6.3% Dunlop, 3.5% U.S. Royal, and not buy a Ford Anglia again . WI.4o%uldANyroonn buy this car again? Yes, 71.2%. No, The following cars were named by those who said they would
Is service satisfactory? Yes, 5o%. No, 36.4%. Most British owners seemed to be well satisfied with service but a few foreign owners mentioned that factory-trained mechanics ought to be in attendance. 13.6% of owners carry out their own servicing. If car modified give brief details Of the Austin-Healey too models, which represent 59% of the total, to.6% have been fitted with the full works Lc Mans modifications. Other modifications have not been made in large quantities, presumably because most people consider that the Healey is fast enough in standard form. A shorter exhaust system terminating in front of the rear
wheels is most popular, being fitted by whilst the Rudd suspension has been fitted by 3.1%. On the engine 3.1% have fitted high-lift camshafts, 4.5% have modified the cylinder head, whilst a further 3.1% have raised the compression ratio. Larger carburetters have been fitted by 3.1%, and balanced crankshafts by 3.1%.
ENGINE Both the 4-cylinder and the 6-cylinder engines appear to have been quite reliable, the only replacement recurring in any quantity being big-end bearings on 9.1% and replacement water pumps on 7.6%. New rings have been fitted on 4.5%, and a further 4.5% have been given a rebore.
CLUTCH On the Austin-Healey too models the clutchoperating rod has failed on 25.6%, mainly due to its proximity to the ground. The later 3000 models having hydraulic actuation do not suffer this problem. Clutch overhauls have been carried out on 16.6% at varying mileages.
GEARBOX The gearbox is not the best feature either of the loo or the 3000 model. The earlier BN1 and BN2 too models have a 3-speed gearbox which is available with overdrive, and hard driving usually causes fairly rapid wear in this box. However, the 4-speed box does not seem to be a great improvement. Of the total 30.4% have required replacement or overhauled gearboxes, failures in mainshafts, layshafts and the pinions being fairly evenly distributed.
BRAKES Very little actual trouble seems to have been discovered on either model. Those with drum brakes all round hanker after the front discs of the 3000 model as the stopping power is not up to too-m.p.h. motoring. Those with discs seem to have had some bothers with rapid pad wear and disc scoring, but most of these people have fitted the dust shields which are now being offered. Pad and lining life now seems to average better than 2o,000 miles.
STEERING Most people appeared to be quite happy with the steering, only the normal replacements due to wear being necessary. The steering side rod was replaced on 6.1% but king-pin and swivel-pin replacements occurred mostly at high enough mileages to be considered as normal wear and tear.
SUSPENSION The rear leaf-springs, seem to weaken and break after longish mileages for 19.7% of the survey cars suffered from this problem in one or more of the rear springs. Some people took the opportunity to modify the suspension when the breakages occurred by fitting the Rudd conversion or a different make of shock-absorber, usually the Koni. Shock-absorbers have been changed because of failure on 6.1 % of the Survey cars.
INSTRUMENTS The petrol gauge has proved to be the most inefficient of the Austin-Healey instruments, 27.3% requiring replacement on all models. The speedometer required replacement on 12.1%, the temperature gauge on 3.1%, and the oilpressure gauge on 3.1%. Several people remarked on the lack of an ammeter, which they consider essential for a car of this class.
ELECTRICAL The fuel pump, which failed on 18.2% of the survey cars, was the most troublesome of the electrical accessories. The overdrive solenoid switch, which seems to fail on whatever type of car to which it is fitted, was replaced by 7.6%. The battery on the large Healey model seems to have a satisfactory life.
REAR AXLE The rear axle seems to have been most reliable, the only complaint recurring in any quantity being of excessive noise at some speeds, but of actual failures there have been very few indeed, only isolated cases of half-shaft and panhard rod failure being notified. BODYWORK Some complaints were made of water leaks, mainly into the floor area around the driver’s and passenger’s feet. This was mentioned by 7.6%, whilst rusting of various parts, mainly the areas below doors, was mentioned by 9.1%. Poor chromework was reported by 4.5% and poor paintwork also by 4.5%•
OTHER SERIOUS DEFECTS The exhaust system came in for a good deal of criticism here, but this is mainly due to the poor ground clearance of this model which causes the silencer to hit the ground sometimes. The poor ground clearance was also criticised separately by s2.x%, some of these suffering cracked sumps because of this fault. The only other fault mentioned in any quantity was the looseness of spokes in the wire wheels which occurred after prolonged periods of hard driving. This was reported by 7.6%.
TYRES Dunlop tyres are fitted to 57.6% of Healeys, Michelin to 27.3%, Avon to 3.1%, Goodyear to 3.1%, Firestone to I.5%» Davies to i.%, and Trelleborg to I.5%.• Tyre life of Healey owners varies considerably due to the make fitted and the type of driving, varying from 8,000 to over 50,000 miles per set. Would you buy this car again? Yes, 72.8%. No, 27.3%. Of those who would not buy the large Healey model again the following cars were named as the successor : Jaguar (XK and E-type) 9.3% M.G. (M.G.-A) I.7% VW (1,192 c.c.) • • 4.8% Rochdale (Olympic) .. 1.7% Triumph (TR3 & TR4) 3.2% Alfa Romeo (Giulietta) 1.7% Volvo (x22S and Paoo) 3.2% Not certain .. • 1.7%
Is service satisfactory? 73% expressed satisfaction with
Renault service, 2 1.3% expressed dissatisfaction and 5.7% carry out their own servicing.
If car is modified give brief details. The most popular modification to the Dauphine is the fitting of a modified exhaust system. The exhaust was modified on 15.8% of the Survey cars, the Abarth system being most popular. A different silencer has been fitted by 5.7%. Carburetter modifications have been carried out by a number of people, 1.7% having fitted single S.U.s, and 5.7% fitting twin-carburetter layouts, S.U.s being the most popular. Cylinder-head modifications have been carried out by a further 2.8% having the compression ratio raised. The suspension has been lowered on 4.5%, Ken Rudd being responsible for most of these. A modified camshaft has been fitted to 2.3%, valve springs to 2.3% and modified shock-absorbers to x.1%. ENGINE 52.5% of Renault Dauphine owners have had no engine trouble. The Dauphine engine appears to have suffered a number of minor troubles rather than a few serious ones. However, 7.9% of engines required replacement pistons at fairly low mileages, the highest mileage mentioned being 37,000. Several other readers remarked on piston slap. In view of the fact that the automatic choke was given as a cause of trouble by 5.1% this may well tie in with the piston replacements, as excess petrol may have been washing down the cylinder walls. Cylinder-head gasket replacements were fairly frequent at 7.9% and the water pump gasket was replaced on so% of the Survey cars. The fibre Liming pinion failed on 8.5%, the water pump was changed on
the crankshaft broke on 2.8%, the big-ends were changed on 1.7%, fan belts on 3.4%, exhaust valves on 3.4% and inlet valves on 1.7%. CLUTCH 76.9% of Dauphine owners suffered no clutch trouble. With this high percentage of satisfied owners it is obvious that few troubles have been encountered. Breakage of the cable has been encountered by 6.2% which is a better percentage than the cable-operated VW clutch. One or two drivers have converted to hydraulic operation. Those with the Ferlec automatic clutch seem to be quite satisfied, although minor electrical faults which appear to be expensive to repair have marred some owners enjoyment. One or two comment that the automatic choke causes the Ferlec clutch to creep on initial starting. Clutch slip has been experienced by 3.9%, 2.8% have replaced the thrust race, and
have required complete overhaul.
GEARBOX 75.2% have had no gearbox trouble. Although not a fault, I 1.3% have commented that the gearbox is too noisy while 4.5% remark on the rather poor change and 3.9% criticise poor synchromesh. However, of actual troubles, only 2.8% have required replacement of one or more gears and 5.7% have required new bearings. BRAKES No trouble was experienced by 55.4% of Dauphine owners. The most criticised aspect of the Dauphine brakes was
the subject of grabbing. This seems to be most apparent when the drums are cold but 20.9% felt strongly enough about brake grab to mention it. Some owners have had the linings replaced by a different type under guarantee so presumably Renault are well aware of this fault. Brake lining life appears to be fairly low, an average mileage being around the 25,000 mile mark. Comments on brake fade were made by 5.1% and on too frequent adjustment by 2.8%.
STEERING 93.8% of Renault owners had no steering troubles. Apart from king-pin replacements 1.7% and bushes 1.7%, there has been little trouble with the Dauphine steering. However, there were one or two comments on the low geared steering and several readers mentioned that they had fitted the Rudd higher geared steering box. SUSPENSION No suspension trouble has been experienced by 66.1%. The most frequent replacement has been to the shock-absorbers, 15.3% of which have required renewal at mileages varying from 5,000 to 40,000. Various suspension bush replacements have been required by 7.9% and wheel bearings by 2.4%•
INSTRUMENTS No instrument trouble was experienced by 72.3%. As is usual the speedometer cable was the main cause of complaint, 9% requiring renewal. The speedometer head was replaced on 3.4% and 5.7% remarked that the speedometer was becoming noisy, indicative of an impending failure. The fuel contents gauge failed on 7.9%, the rev-counter cable on 1.7%, and the water temperature gauge on 1.7%.
ELECTRICAL 52.5% had no electrical failures. The poor headlamps were criticised by some and 6.8% have fitted new headlamps to give better illumination. Other failures include windscreen wiper motor 6.8%, dynamo 5.7%, horn 3.9%, starter 2.8%, contact breaker points 2.8%, indicators 4.5%, heater 2.3%, and faulty wiring 2.3%.
FINAL DRIVE No failures were reported by 8z% of Dauphine owners. Excessive noise was mentioned by 10.7% but actual failures were limited to 2.8% of oil seals, and 1.7% of drive shafts, needle roller bearings and universal joints. Otherwise the gearbox/ final drive appears to be extremely reliable.
BODYWORK 42.4% of Dauphine owners had no trouble with the bodywork. The bodywork of the Dauphine is probably the most criticised part of the car, for many people remarked on the thin gauge of metal used and the ease with which panels could be dented. Premature rusting was mentioned by 22% whilst 22.6% reported on poor chromium plating. Water leaks into the interior were mentioned by 8.5″,/,,’ and 5.1’% suffered from defective door locks. OTHER SERIOUS DEFECTS Although a number of items were mentioned under this heading they were mainly repeats of failures in components which had already been dealt with. Unbalanced wheels were mentioned by 2.8%, poor upholstery by 2.3% whilst 1.7% mentioned that the steering and roadholdingwas poor 1
TYRES The Michelin ” X ” tyre is most popular wear on the Dauphine, no less than 87.6% using this make. Mileages in excess of 20,000 miles seem quite common with these tyres. Dunlop tyres are used by 3.4%, Englebert by 1.7%, Firestone by t.t% and Kleber Colombes by 0.6%. Would you buy this car again? Yes, 58.8% No, 41.2% This is the first model we have dealt with where, under certain circumstances, more owners said they would not buy the car again than those who said they would. The above percentages under the” Yes” answer include 9.1% who would buy only the Gordini version in the future. If these are transferred to the ” No ” section then 50.3% would not buy the Dauphine again and 49.7% would. Of those who said they would not buy a Dauphine again the following makes were mentioned :
Is service satisfactory? 65.2% of Sprite owners expressed satisfaction with service, 17.4% were dissatisfied, and 9.2% carry out their own servicing.
If car is modified give brief details Replacement of the standard exhaust system is the most popular modification for the Sprite, 18.4% fitting a modified type, whilst 4.3% have attached a new silencer to the standard exhaust system. On the engine, 5.9% have modified the cylinder head, 5.3% have raised the compression-ratio, 5.3% have fitted stronger valve springs, 6.3% have fitted high-lift camshafts, 2% have changed pistons for a high-compression type, 3.6% have fitted different models of S.U. carburetters, and 0.7% have lightened the flywheel. The full Sebring engine has been fitted by 1.3% and a supercharger by a further i.3%.
On the chassis side, 9.2% have added an anti-roll bar, 0.7% have modified the suspension, x.3% have fitted different types of shock-absorber, 2.3% have added disc brakes, 1% have changed to wire wheels, and 1.3% have fitted harder brake linings.
ENGINE 53% of Sprite owners suffered no engine trouble. Like the Austin Seven and Mini Minor the Sprite engine seems to suffer a number of small troubles rather than serious defects. Oil leaks were reported by 50.9%, the main point of oil leakage being from the mounting of the external oil filter; broken oil pipes were suffered by OA. Water leaks on the engine were mentioned by 2.6%„, radiator leaks by r%, burst radiator hoses by z%, and water pumps were changed by 2.4%. Valves were replaced by 4.9%, valve guides by 1.3%, and valve springs by 2.4%. Big-end hearings were changed by 4.9%, pistons were re-ringed by 2.6%, new pistons fitted by x %. Fuel pumps were changed by 2%, carburetters by 3%, exhaust systems by 2.6%, oil pumps by 0.7%, camshafts by 1%, timing chains by 1.3%1 extd crankshafts by x%.
curren No clutch trouble has been experienced by 65.9% of Sprite owners. Replaced or fully overhauled clutches have been fitted by 16.2%, usually at relatively low mileages, 7.9% being changed below 18,0o0 miles. The thrust bearing has been changed on 4.6% and the master cylinder on r%. Complaints of a general nature arc levelled against the squeaking which this clutch often emits on taking up the drive; this was mentioned by 3.9%, and slipping Clutches were reported by 2,3%.
GEARBOX Although 59.6% reported no actual mechanical failures with their Sprite, there was general dissatisfaction with this gearbox, both on the Mk. 1 and Mk. II models. Poor synchromesh was mentioned by 5.6%, stiffness by 11.8% and noise by 19.1%. Many people remarked that the box becomes noisy within a few thousand miles, especially when on the overrun in 3rd gear, whilst comments that 1st gear is difficult to engage were made by many people. Replacement gearboxes have been fitted by 5.3°/;„ and broken teeth have been suffered by 1.3%, usually on 1st gear.
BRAKES No trouble has been experienced by 56.9%. A failing which Seems common to many cars is the short brake lining life, 34.9% of the Sprites requiring relining and having relined brakes below 20,000 miles. A general comment was that adjustment is required too frequently. Master cylinder replacement has been Carried out On 4.9%,neW drams on %, and hydraulic piping replacement on 0.3%.
STEERING The rack-and-pinion steering has been almost entirely trouble-free, 94.4% having no trouble at all. Only x% have had the column replaced and 1.3% have remarked on poor alignment. Of the r °,/,, who have found that the car puns to one side most will probably find that attention to wheel balancing will cure the trouble.
SUSPENSION Trouble-free suspension has been encountered by 65.2% but 12.2% felt that the suspension is too noisy, 2.6% felt that it is tot) hard, and 3% mentioned that the Suspension bottoms too easily. Of actual failures, 4.9% had to replace a rear spring, 9.2% changed shock-absorbers, 1%. changed U-bolts, and 0.7% replaced wishbone pins.
INSTRUMENTS 39.2% had no instrument trouble. The most failures were recorded on the speedometer and rev.-counter heads, 20.7% of each being exchanged, whilst r4.3% of speedometer cables and 5.6% of rev.-counter cables required renewal, the drive gearbox of the rev.-counter cable being susceptible to Seizing. The fuel gauge has been replaced on 9.2%, the watertemperature gauge on 7.5%, the oil-pressure gauge on 3.3%, and the dynamo warning light on 2.6%.
ELECTRICAL No electrical trouble was experienced by 49.7%. The battery has been changed on 15.2% of Sprites at Varying mileages, although it should be remembered that the Sprite has been in production only since mid-1958. Horn failure was experienced on 8.9%, the ignition/lights switch failed on 6.9%, dynamo trouble was found on 4.3%, coil trouble OR 3.9%, the wiper motor on 2.3%, distributor on 1.6%, and (Erection indicators on 1,6%.
REAR AXLE No rear axle trouble has been experienced by 70%. The most common complaint concerned excessive whine and backlash in the rear axle, many people mentioning a ” clonk ” as the drive is taken up. Oil seal failures were reported by 3.3%, broken half-shafts. by 1.6%, broken crown-wheels and pinions by 1.6%, and exchanged rear axles by 2.3%.
BODYWORK No bodywork troubles have been experienced by 38.2%. The most serious complaint was against water leaks in various places. Body rust was complained of by 19.7%, the most vulnerable points being the sealing between wings and bonnet and the foot pans below driver’s and passenger’s feet. Poor chromium plating was mentioned by ir.2%, ill-fitting sidescreens by 6.9%, body rattles by 4.6%, discoloration of the rear window by 1.6%, ill-fitting bonnet by 2.3%, poor door catches by 2.3%, and poor floor covering by 2.3%.
OTHER SERIOUS DEFECTS The water leaks into the interior were reiterated by 8.2% whilst 3% mentioned rusting. Leaking hoods were complained of by 2,3% and a leaking hardtop by 2%.
TYRES As Dunlop tyreS are supplied as Standard equipment they are fitted to 68.2% of the Survey cars, Michelin to 2r.4%. Avon to 3.0%, Goodyear to 2%, and Firestone to 2%. Would you buy this car again? Yes, 70.7%. No, 29.3%. The following cars were named by those who said they would not buy the Sprite again :