C1OC - CityBugClub - Citroen C1, Peugeot 107, 108 & Toyota Aygo Owners Club. (Discount code for CityBugStore: C1OC)

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 Post subject: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 9:28 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:51 pm 
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Nice. I take it you're happy with it?

The small/square(ish) rear plate is a clue to it being an import (I know that the ebay seller already confirmed that it is) but I'm intrigued about the rear fog lamps. Often imports have a bolt-on fog lamp to comply with UK specs (not needed in Japan I believe). However, I don't see one on your car. Are they/it just part of the rear light cluster?

I had an older Mk3 MR2 that died so I cannibalised bits. My current one is an import (the model is actually called an MR-S as per Japanese Domestic Market spec). The MR-S import had a bolt-on fog lamp but I changed out the rear light clusters for UK spec ones incorporating the rear fog lamps from my dead MR2. The switch on the inside is still an after market job but the lamps are standard UK from the outside. I also swapped the rear plate surround so that I could fit a standard UK plate just for the hell of it really.

The import compliant fog lamps are commonly bolted on to a stupid place - my MX5 (actually a Eunos Roadster, JDM model name/brand) had one right in the middle of the rear bumper in the place most likely to be hit by... well, anything really. I mean... look at it. :lol:
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Other common weirdness things with imports (you probably know most of this stuff):

The indicator stalks are usually the right way around. i.e. the Japanese tend to put the indicators on the right-hand stalk. This is, of course, the best way because it means you can dip headlamps (etc) even if your hand is on the gear stick. Both my MX5 (Eunos) and MR-S were/are like this. Amusingly, Japanese manufacturers these days "cripple" cars for the UK market by putting indicators on the left side. Apparently they do this because we are used to buying cars with the stalks that way around. Other manufacturers who usually make LHD cars just put their switches into our RHD cars unaltered and so UK drivers have gotten used to things that way. Many early Japanese cars intended for the UK market weren't like that but UK customers apparently kept complaining about going around corners with a quick flash of the windscreen wipers instead of the indicators. :lol:

Weirdness in the instrument cluster: JDM spec is km/h, not mph. However, UK spec means that mph must be shown so the speedo has to be converted. The conversion is usually done in one of two ways.

The easy/cheap way is simply to put a sticker or new dash dial cover on to the old instrument. My MX5 was done in the cheapest way possible: a new dial sticker was placed on top of the old dial and at night time the two didn't match up so half the numbers didn't light up properly (I fixed it with a new dial because there are loads of after-market parts available for MX5s). If it's done well, it isn't a problem but it might mean that the numbers don't go through the usual range that a UK spec dial might. The dial face on my MR-S was replaced by the importer so my speedo goes up to 110 instead of 140 (I think those are the numbers involved, can't check atm).

The other common way (if it's suitable) is to change the electronics of the dash so that it will point to the correct numbers without physically altering the dial. This is often done with a simple plug-on or solder-on adapter of some sort. Lots of mk3 MR2s have that but mine is just the replacement dial version as I mentioned.

Similarly, the odometer can still be in km instead of miles, depending on how the conversion was done. My speedo was changed by putting a new face onto the dial (like I said) so the electronics weren't changed. As a result, my odometer reads in km (so the numbers look much higher than the actual distance covered by the car). It is legal for the odo to read in km but the speedo must be altered to have mph on it. I actually have a UK-spec dash in my garage but I haven't got around to trying it out yet. I read that attaching a UK spec dash to an otherwise JDM spec car can give false readings. I'll give it a try some day to see what happens.

My car also doesn't have dimmable dashboard lighting for some reason. Not sure if that is peculiar to the JDM spec or not.

Immobilisers: often imported cars don't have immobilisers (are the Japanese more honest than us?) and import cars will usually have an after market one fitted (not sure if it's a legal requirement but it's required by many UK insurance companies).

More... Japanese seat belts are often weird. They sometimes have a strange feature that sort of semi-locks the retractable seat belt once the engine is running. I think that it is meant to reduce the tightness of the belt across your chest. The belt still works properly (obviously) but it just feels a bit looser when driving. The feature is usually easily disabled (without affecting the otherwise normal operation of the belt) by uncoupling a connector (often under the seat).

What the car is registered as may also be weird. The DVLA just put down whatever the import agent tells them about the car model and this is often inaccurate. My Eunos Roadster was registered as a 40 tonne Euclid quarry lorry when I first got it :lol: My MR-S is registered as something like a "Toyota MR-S MR2" but with all the details on the manufacturer's line of the V5. I tried to change it but the DVLA told me that Toyota hadn't released a suitable code for the MR-S in the UK so that was the only way they could record the information.

You might find other peculiarities: JDM spec MX5s, for example, have a little clip for holding something in the passenger footwell. I forget what the something is though - an emergency glow stick I think.

Also, a thorough clean of the car can sometimes reveal interesting things such as Japanese money or other clues of the car being used in Japan (Japanese writing on lost receipts etc). Of course, if the car has been in the UK for a while, that is less likely.

I believe that, for a while, it was very lucrative for people to import JDM spec cars and modify them to be suitable for UK use. Certainly, if you look at lots of sporty or otherwise interesting Japanese cars from the 1990s through to the early 2000s, a lot of them have the tell-tale small rear number plates and bolt-on fog lamps. Apparently, the bubble has more or less burst though and it's no longer such a worthwhile business model.


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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 11:41 pm 
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Yeah I absolutely love it!

Yeah it was imported in 2000 but built in 97, the indicators are the other way round which was odd to begin with but got used to it now

I seem to be lacking power steering which a bit gutting but nevermind

It's got an aftermarket alarm/immobiliser in her which works a treat

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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:24 am 
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Enjay wrote:
Immobilisers: often imported cars don't have immobilisers (are the Japanese more honest than us?)


Generally, yes. Many years ago I worked for a global car manufacturer. We got involved in a long conversation with the Japanese about the requirement for the interior lights to come on when the door was unlocked. At the time there was a trend in the US for car jacking where the perpetrator would break in and hide on the floor in the rear until the owner returned. Ergo, we wanted the lights to come on before anyone got in so you could see if someone was hiding. The Japanese simply could not conceive of anyone doing that.

Mind you, there's loads of weirdness when doing business with the Japanese.


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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 9:20 am 
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Drives: Citroen C1 1.0 2011
sweet... enjoy :)


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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 10:23 am 
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Welcome to the ex owners club, although you are not technically an ex owner until you have sold your bug.

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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 10:39 am 
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Gooders_uk wrote:
Ergo, we wanted the lights to come on before anyone got in so you could see if someone was hiding. The Japanese simply could not conceive of anyone doing that.

Interesting. I never even considered that might be a benefit of the lights coming on when unlocking.


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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:53 pm 
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Gave her a wash, noticed a few stone chips and scratches that will need to be repaired

I'll add that to my list of things!

Engine cover gas strut
Remote boot pop
Replace brake pads
Refurbish alloys
Paint callipers
Replace and flush coolant
Put my pioneer Hu in
Add in a phone holder and a new fag lighter socket for my charger
Install my dash cam
Seal up a gap in the windows
Add in some subtle drls
Replace the headlight and fog light bulbs for white ones
Paint cam cover
New number plates and maybe smooth the front bumper


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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2016 8:37 am 
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Reedy wrote:

Gave her a wash, noticed a few stone chips and scratches that will need to be repaired


Yeah I hate that, when you buy a used car you don't tend to notice every little minor scrape or scratch until you wash it.

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 Post subject: Re: Reedy mr2
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2016 10:27 am 
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I knew there was some as the seller pointed them out but found a few more, nothing I can't sort myself though

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