Car of the Month April 2012

  Submitted by Greg Narey

I have owned this little exxy since 1983 (car is 1980) and it has covered 54,000 miles. I am the second owner and the car was originally silver. The car was originally my wife's and when my son was born in 1985 I decided as a present I would get it painted in her favourite colour, red.

I also had the head and crank uprated, twin DCNF40s added plus a four pipe Ansa exhaust (which I saw on an X19 in Tenerife) and to finish off, a set of chrome Cycone 8 spokes. The engine was supposed to have put out 130-140bhp and did rev to 7300rpm. The original engine work was done by a firm called Subito (long gone I think) and although I seriously doubted the claimed power output, it certainly was a lot punchier and made a lovely noise.

The paint was done by a pal who ran a bodyshop. By accident his apprentice started to DA the roof panel and had taken off half the textured finish before he was discovered. The upshot of this was to continue and the roof panel looks great in a finish that is the same as the bodywork!

The car was used for a couple of years mainly by me in the dry summer months as my wife now found it difficult to drive ie, high end torque characteristics, sharp clutch and with the new wheels, pretty heavy steering when parking.  As work and another child took up more and more time I put the car away for a few years in a lock-up. I could have sold the car but I just love X19s. I am obviously biased, but I still believe the car was way ahead of its time and when people see the car today they are staggered that what they are looking at is 32 years old! Just compare it to a B or Midget!.

Two years ago I dragged WEY155V out of storage and began to re-commission. Unfortunately the engine block seemed to have developed a crack (cold winters no anti-freeze) so was replaced . The replacement coming out of a much later model scrapped X19. By pure chance the replacement engine was superb and with added electronic ignition and my DCNF40s the car still makes a great sound and puts out 92bhp at the wheels.

The original chrome wheels are still pretty good and are now shod with Toyo road/track tyres which look brill.  The interior was retrimmed in leather (brilliant job by Trimendouz of Leigh), carpet off Ebay along with various other bits including a new 4 pipe exhaust. I won't bore you with more detail, the car is rust free and is only
used in warm dry weather and I intened to keep it in tip top condition for the many summers to come!