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Car Of The Month :
July 2016

'Pooky Bear' by Flying Banana

After selling Redfive to Jan & Ian, I decided to get a small runabout rather than using The Flying Banana everyday. I rather fancied getting an MG3 in Mellow Yellow, well that was the plan anyway. However I did also rather like the idea of having a ZT-T in Firefrost Red but only wanted a 1.8t as I know all about the problems.

I attended a meet down in Devon last September at the Highwayman Pub in Okehampton, there were a total of 12 cars at the meet including Matt Darke with his Yellow ZT and me with Banana. Also there was Paul Collins with the oldest Rover 75 Tourer. Now Paul had also acquired what was thought to be the oldest known ZT-T in Trophy Blue, but it had a broken engine.

I knew that Paul also had a Starlight Silver V8 ZT-T with supercharger, and this is where a chance conversation started. Paul mentioned that he needed to get rid of the ZT-T but he meant the Trophy Blue one. I thought he was talking about the V8! My hopes were dashed when he told me which one.

But later on we had a chat and Paul said that if I was interested, then a deal could be done, however he insisted that I thoroughly examined the car with it up on a garage ramp. If I did not want the car then he would keep it. I had a long, long think about it.

December 11th was the day I drove down to stay with Ratty, I had arranged with Paul to look at the car the next day and Paul took Allen and I to his friend's garage where the V8 was put on the ramp. I looked at all the parts underneath, and the car was totally clean. The test drive followed which sealed the deal for me. The car had clocked up 34,780 miles, and was number 457 of the total 883 built. It was also fitted with a Kenne Bell supercharger at a cost of 4,780 back in 2007.

With the agreed price reached, the car was all mine. Paul gave me all the oils including the supercharger oil, as well as the original Technical Grey dash as Paul had replaced it with a walnut one with matching steering wheel. The car also had OEM mudflaps and Xpower exhaust boxes too. The car itself is totally poverty spec with no extra toys. It has keep fit rear windows, and no traction control - something to remember with 400bhp pushing you along!

I travelled down by train on 18th December and collected the car on the 19th, my birthday. As I drove away the off side headlight bulb blew, but a quick stop at Halfords for a change fixed that. I brought the car home on 22nd and it had completed the 270 mile trip using 24 miles per gallon of fuel and giving me loads of smiles. Paul has since reimbursed me for the cost of the light too.

Since then I have replaced all four brake discs, all the pads, and both front flexi pipes. One collapsed resulting in it jamming the brake on. So another front calliper plus pads, two new front tyres, two headlight bulbs (the other one blew as well), replacement wiper blades, and a service by MJS later, all is well. I have also had the wheels refurbished by Keith Dickens, and now have a full size spare too.

The car is now on 39,500 miles and has had lots of nice comments. All of my cars have always had a name, so I thought in honour of my late wife, I would call it 'Pooky Bear' which was her CB handle.

Will I keep the car? Who knows, but it's not bad for a wee runabout.

Cheers, Bear & Banana

Article written by member Flying Banana

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