An­other epic Al­le­gro ad­ven­ture

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Our Classics -


May 2014


42,834 An ex­haust gas­ket and four


ear drums


he Al­le­gro and my­self have done some epic ex­pe­di­tions to­gether. Our first jour­ney as a cou­ple cov­ered 440 miles from Kent to Ed­in­burgh, fol­lowed by a jaunt into the Scot­tish High­lands to at­tend the in­au­gu­ral ‘How Many Left?’ event at the Grampian Mo­tor Mu­seum. Then, bit­ing the bul­let, the old girl was driven back down to Peter­bor­ough, Cam­bridgeshire, to join the rest of the CCW fleet.

That trip south was a night­mare. Wa­ter re­fused to stay in the cool­ing sys­tem and the al­ter­na­tor over­charged the bat­tery, show­er­ing the en­gine bay and wiring loom with bat­tery acid.

Ever since, the Al­le­gro has lived in a shed and been brought out only for spe­cial oc­ca­sions. How­ever, with a visit from a Scot­tish lady friend all the way from the moth­er­land and a full week off from work to en­joy, the Al­le­gro rolled out of the garage to be­come our stylish trans­porta­tion.

Orig­i­nally, the dis­tance to be cov­ered with the car Leah calls ‘Jacko’ – a nod to its reg­is­tra­tion num­ber – was to be min­i­mal. But as we were car­ried away, the miles racked up. The prob­lem was we dis­cov­ered Airbnb, an on­line ser­vice where you can book rooms in pri­vate houses as lit­tle as one night be­fore – which re­sulted in a jour­ney via Ox­ford, Cam­bridge and Cardiff over five days, plant­ing 550 miles un­der the Al­le­gro’s tim­ing chain.

There was over­whelm­ing para­noia that some­thing – any­thing – could fall off or catch fire, but the only is­sue was an ex­haust that be­came even louder on the re­turn jour­ney. Turns out that the ex­haust gas­ket had per­ished and, in a turn to prove I’m mostly use­less at ev­ery­thing, the spare I’d pur­chased for such a catas­tro­phe didn’t fit.

How­ever, the big­gest prob­lem was the MoT date. Ex­pir­ing within 24 hours, we had to race back to Peter­bor­ough and get the Al­le­gro into stor­age. As it turns out, a 1.3 Al­le­gro can do 70mph with ease, even at the cost of our ears.

With the taste for ad­ven­ture re­turn­ing, the next ex­pe­di­tion comes in the shape of a Land’s End to John o’Groats char­ity re­lay in aid of Help For Heroes in June. Feel free to do­nate to a wor­thy Al­le­gro ad­ven­ture.


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