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4.6 Rover V8 1970 Reliant Scimitar GTE SE5

 
 
 


Engine: 4.6 Rover-based V8, cross-bolted block, top-hat liners etc, TVR heads, fast-road cam. Electronic fuel injection using TVR and Jaguar parts.

Recently fitted custom-made Tony Law tubular extractor manifolds and exhaust system, baffled sump, to allow use on the track, large capacity radiator, electric fan.

Rear mounted battery, cut-off switch in glove-box Recalibrated speedo and rev-counter

Transmission: Borg-Warner T5 5 speed manual gearbox from TVR Griffith. Standard rear axle from an automatic Scimitar (i.e. high ratio, 30mph per 1000rpm in top). A future addition will be a limited slip diff.

I estimate 250-260 bhp now; I hope for close to 300 when mappable ECU is fitted.

Planned work: swirl-pot to avoid fuel surge, plus maybe an oil cooler, but the motor does not run hot. (If I ever kill the Rover engine, a 380bhp Chevrolet LS1 motor is going in!)

0-60: low fives

Top speed: don't know. Accelerating strongly at 135mph, but approaching take-off velocity, so I chickened out! 150+ should be on the cards with more aerodynamic work. (I am considering a flat-floor and rear diffuser).

Chassis/Suspension: Standard geometry, but lowered and adjustable (for height and damping stiffness) with AVO springs and dampers. Polybushes throughout.

Standard strength springs (I like supple, but firmly damped suspension). Wider track due to wheel offset. Strengthened Watt linkage location. Reinforced lower wishbone brackets.

Wheels are 15"x7" compomotive ML, made to order. Sportiva Z60 tyres, 205/60x15. OK, but not great. Considering changing to 16" so I can fit my favourite tyres, Goodyear Eagle F1s. Also 15"x7" steel rims for track-day slicks.

Brakes (front): Wilwood 276mm ventilated discs, 4pot alloy calipers and fast-road pads (kit from Rally Design). Stub axle strengtheners to prevent pad knock-back.

Brakes (rear): home-made disc conversion using Ford Scorpio calipers and Rover 800 discs. Standard Scimitar handbrake cable Wilwood pedal box with twin master cylinders (interior mounted) and adjustable front/rear brake bias. Servo removed. Braking is very strong and resilient.

Bodywork: I finished restoring the bodywork about 15 months ago. VERY big job. For example, a previous poor accident repair meant the left side of the body was 15mm longer than the right !

I built in a few minor body modifications:
Home-made front spoiler, re-shaped air vent below bumper SE5A grille, with aperture directing air to the radiator Cibie halogen lamps with SE5A headlamp surrounds (modified to fit properly, they normally don't) Side extractor vents, sited in low pressure area, sucking air and out of the engine bay. (Vent trims are mid 90's Nissan Micra bonnet grilles) Fixed, semi-flush quarterlight windows, to reduce wind-noise/drag Drip-rails mounted flush to A-pillar, ditto Small mirrors mounted well back, ditto Stainless steel B-pillar trims, just for looks. No exterior boot lock (cable release inside the car) Colour is VW jade green metallic, sprayed quite "dry" to enhance the metallic effect. A friend of mine sprayed it; we were very pleased for a DIY job. (It has deteriorated a little since the pictures were taken, but still looks good) No SCIMITAR badge letters because I can't find any good enough.

Interior: OK but "work-in-progress"
Currently fitted with nasty fake wood dashboard; will be replaced in future by aluminium Currently TVR Griffith front seats, which are I don't like. I have some excellent black suede Mazda RX7 sports seats, when I get round to fitting them Pedal box moved 40mm to the right, to allow big manifolds with engine moved further back. (Steering rack is now in correct location, not spaced forward) Currently part-way through removing red carpets (!) and replacing with black Mountney steering wheel, spaced to bring it higher & nearer the driver In future I may replace the seatbelts with 3-point harnesses

That's it basically... plenty of other things I've forgotten I'm sure. Any questions you have, please ask!

Forgot to mention, also considering a quick-rack and electric power steering conversion

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