Car of the Month December 2008

  Submitted by Steve Snape



I first bought an X1/9 1300cc back in 1979. I was young, impressionable but needed a car that looked cool and affordable (Although I remember paying a kings ransom for her). Unfortunately for me, from day one my little pride and joy gave me nothing but trouble, even driving her home from the garage the day I bought her, I remember breaking down within 200 yards of the garage forecourt! Eventually after 12 months of suffering continual garage visits, I decided she had to go. But undeterred by all the trouble I promised myself I would eventually own another X1/9.


Then in May 2005, I met through work Mr Andy Kerr, who at the time was the Owners' Club secretary. Anyway we started discussing our mutual passion for X1/9s and I happened to mention I once owned a 1300cc X1/9 and would love to own another to rekindle part of my youth. Andy offered to sell me a 1500cc X1/9 "that he had spare outside his garage taking up valuable drive space".

Having bought the car from Andy, he kindly offered me much support and many spare parts for my newly purchased X1/9 (he also introduced me to the X1/9 owners club). Whilst the car was drivable, and looked pretty good for her age, she was in need of some TLC. So I started off by fixing the mechanical faults such as alternator, battery, spare wheel, refurbished carburettor, re-conditioned radiator, extra manually operated cooling fan, carb cooling fan relay and hose, head lamp light switch, new window switches and finally a much needed full service. Then it was time to start work on making her look pretty again, so I replaced the boot, bonnet (Which Andy kindly arranged for me FOC), rear wheel arch, new tan leather seats, tan colour door cards, matching brown carpet and finally a full professional body re-spray. In total I estimate I spent circa £1,800 on her.

Now I can ride around in my pretty looking X1/9 with pride as she looks good, starts first time, runs smoothly and turns heads from the roar of her exhaust.