Buying Classics Abroad
1 CHASSIS AND BODYWORK
Check along the full length of the chassis rails for corrosion or misalignment. The sills and chassis outriggers are also weakspots for rust, as is the lower section of the body.
2 ENGINES 2
The signature sixcylinder is potentially long-lived and reliable if frequently serviced and treated with care, so scrutinise the service history to see if this has been the case. The oil pressure should be about 50psi while driving.
An electrically-engaged overdrive was added to the fourspeed manual gearbox as an optional extra. Make sure it engages on demand; if not, fixing could be simple electrics or something more expensive. The transmission is otherwise unproblematic.
4 TRIM AND INTERIOR
Make sure any righthand drive conversions have been done thoroughly, and try to ascertain the age of the parts used. Most modern retrims will be in leather, and the original vinyl roof material is often replaced with mohair.
Vague steering could be due to weakness in the steering box or worn kingpins, which need frequent greasing if they’re to last. When you’re on your test drive, listen out for any clunks and check all the bushes. There’s a leaf-sprung live axle at the rear, where radius arms replaced a Panhard rod from Phase II onwards.