Part six: In the last instalment for this project, we remove the tatty vinyl tint film and make a few final tweaks.
PART SIX: In the final part of our Fiesta project, Andrew Everett carries out the final finishing touches before our muchimproved 2009 model finds a new owner.
Of all the CM project cars, this white Fiesta seems to be the one that’s shot by really quickly. It doesn’t seem five minutes since we collected it from BCA Leeds at the beginning of the year and it’s given us no cause for concern.
Whoever has this next will get a cracking motor. Judging by the prices these cars fetch, they’re as popular as ever. The Fiesta had a great start in life with an appearance on Top Gear, where it was used for a variety of tests, including a beach assault with the Royal Marines. It was hailed as the best car in class, a position it seemed to retain for years. It was only replaced last year with an allnew model, so had a good nine-year run.
So what has it been like to work on?
Some jobs are tricky – a cambelt change is pretty involved, although we were pleasantly surprised by how well ours had lasted after 100,000 miles – but replacing the dampers was straightforward thanks to good design. Any rust we found was purely cosmetic and due to owner neglect, so it’s an attractive ownership proposition. And it’s worth knowing that Ford specifies a lifetime fuel filter in the tank on its petrol models.
We put on four new tyres because two were in such a grim state. While we could have fitted a pair of matching Chinese Three A budget tyres (which are actually quite a decent brand), we opted for a set of new Avons at less than £200 fitted – great value when you consider just how good they are and how long they’ll last.
We also had our rear windows ‘detinted’. Not that there is anything wrong with tinting, but ours was cheap and nasty single-ply film that was turning purple and had a few areas of damage. It’s cheap enough to have replaced if the next owner wants to return to the tinted look.