Simon's new Xantia V6 and Leaf blog

Tell us your ongoing tales and experiences with your French car here. Post pictures of your car here as well.

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Mandrake
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by Mandrake »

Thanks Richard,

I've taken note of those and will order them when it comes time to do the pump. Any excuse to further my tool collection is good by me... :-D
Northern_Mike

Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by Northern_Mike »

CitroJim wrote:You're right about the Polish exhausts being a bit rough around the edges Simon but for £75, who cares?
Well, quite! My Activa had a system I got from a Polish supplier on it. It took a bit of fiddling to fit it, but it cost me £60 delivered (cat-back)
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Mandrake
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by Mandrake »

Fitted a new air filter on Friday, the old one looks like someone dropped it on the ground then walked on it!

Image

At first I thought it had fixed the strange "whine" that occurs at particular throttle openings and rpm but although it has greatly reduced it so it's hardly audible its still there slightly, so maybe there is another air leak on the inlet tract somewhere...

Yesterday we went for a long drive for a day out, round trip of 130 miles and the car was a joy to drive. Nice smooth ride and lots of fun around the corners.

I wasn't entirely happy with the engine performance on the journey though - for the last couple of weeks I've felt that while the engine is always nice and responsive below 2500 on a light throttle, (unlike old V6 which used to bog down badly at low rpm) the foot to the floor performance at higher rpm was sometimes quite lacking and in fact not as good as old V6... :?

(It was the same on the trip back from Preston, and seemed to be cured for a while after changing the MAP sensor)

It was also lacking urge again on a short trip this morning so today I decided I'd hook up my test probe to the oxygen sensor so I can monitor the O2 signal with my scope on the dashboard. A lot can be ascertained about how the engine is running from this one signal - and I wanted to check if it was running lean due to a faulty fuel pump or blocked fuel filter, particularly when the fuel pump is a bit noisy.

So I connected my test lead up and the only things I touched at all were the oxygen sensor connector (which I unplugged then reconnected) and the spark plug leads - which I couldn't resist wiggling as the plastic guide is broken at the back and not bolted at the front:

Image

I then went for a test drive and the lacking performance of the last couple of weeks was completely gone. =D> Not only was the higher rpm foot flat to the floor performance that I was trying to troubleshoot now as it should be, it was pulling much more strongly across the board including low rpm as well - I didn't think there was anything wrong with the low rpm performance before but its definitely much better now.

I'm almost certain that the oxygen sensor connector is unrelated to the issue so I think it must be confirmation of faulty spark plug leads. (which I already suspected) When I changed the MAP sensor when I first got the car I also fiddled with the spark plug leads then as well - so the MAP sensor may be a red herring and the real fault is an intermittent break in one or more spark plug leads, made worse by the fact that the plastic guide is broken and floating about letting the leads move around with vibration...

It wouldn't be without precedent - two of the three spark plug leads in old V6 were internally broken and intermittent when I first got it.

So I guess I do indeed need to replace the spark plug leads. Does anyone have a spare spark plug lead guide ? Or can anyone suggest a glue to repair my old one - a glue that can withstand the intense heat directly above the exhaust and manifold ?

I also changed the fuel filter today - although that was after the above discovery with the spark plug leads, so unrelated to the improvement in performance.
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by KP »

Rough the surface up of the guide and use liquid metal simon, it should stick without issue and can be moulded ok and then sets rock solid and will resist very high temps.
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by Mandrake »

A very enjoyable afternoon yesterday visiting David. :)

One of the main reasons for the visit was to get a ride in the Activa post V6 conversion before it goes away to hide from winter salt - so I have now been in an Activa twice - once as a TCT and now as a V6. :)

The weather was sunny and dry, perfect weather for tearing around roundabouts... :twisted: I must say that car is fantastic. Best Xantia I've been in bar none and the V6 is wonderful in it. What really surprised me is how quiet and smooth the V6 is - the engine noise even when revved is far quieter than my old V6 and I'm pretty sure its a bit quieter than my new V6 as well. For a 120k engine it sounds very smooth and sweet indeed. :) The manual gearbox really does bring it to life too - such a shame that Citroen didn't do a RHD manual Xantia V6, even in plain Hydractive 2 spec it would have been a great car.

I also got my first ride in an XM - very nice indeed, very quiet and stable cruising at speed, quite luxurious inside, definitely a great cruiser but with surprisingly sharp handling for a big car when thrown into a corner. The only problem is trying to find parking spaces that will fit it - I struggle to get a Xantia into some spaces without doing a 5 point turn... :lol: The engine was quite a bit louder than the whisper quiet V6 in the Activa when pushed - not really sure why but it sounds like induction noise so perhaps its the different air intake design in the XM versus the Xantia.

My own V6 went like a dream on the way over and back - since fiddling with the spark plug leads the day before the new found performance has thus far (touch wood) remained, obviously I will want to get the leads replaced and the guide bracket fixed for a long term solution.

After David taking me for a hoon in his Activa I took him for one in my V6 - ostensibly to show him the wheel imbalance issue I'm seeing but we ended up chucking it around a bit and going a bit faster than I had intended... :twisted: I think David will agree the engine in this one goes like an absolute cracker now, I was expecting the car to be a big let down immediately after a manual V6 Activa but apart from the really tight corners like roundabouts I think it held it's own surprisingly well. :)

David then had a go at balancing the wheels on their wheel balance machine, as luck would have it the first wheel we picked - the front right, turned out to be the worst by far and was so bad that it had us doubting whether the machine was lying! But it wasn't... he even removed the tyre from the rim to check inside but nothing could be found visibly wrong with either tyre or rim. That wheel needed 100 grams on the inside and 45 grams on the outside! :shock: The string of weights glued inside the rim looks hilariously silly. :lol: The rest weren't nearly as bad and varied from about 30 grams to 50 grams.

Both front wheels were WAY out and neither had any weights attached or even any clean patches where weights might have once been and fallen off so we suspect someone replaced the front tyres, (which are about 4 1/2 years old) didn't have a centre-less adaptor for their balance machine and just decided not to bother balancing them! #-o Both front tyres are slightly warped but not unusually so for a car that has sat for a long time.

The rear wheels did have balance weights fitted but they too were a long way out, about 30-40 grams a side. Unfortunately both rear tyres are out of round with obvious flat spots, even after 1200 miles driving they haven't recovered their shape. :( They are also pushing eight years old so will really need to be replaced pretty soon. Despite them being obviously out of shape we went ahead and balanced them anyway to see what would happen.

On a test drive the improvement was massive! :) Despite both rear tyres being out of round the final result was far better than I expected. It's not vibration free but its fairly minimal and perfectly tolerable now. It still comes and goes a bit with steering and acceleration/deceleration which makes me think there is a loose steering/suspension joint at the front that needs dealing with, (also due to the rattle from the front right and kickback on the steering from hitting certain kinds of bumps especially on right lock) so much of the remainder of the vibration could actually be that.

The trip home was also a good one with the car running like a dream and feeling so much nicer at speed with most of the vibration removed. :-D The roads out David's way are a lot of fun to drive on, it's a perfect playground for test drives... 8-)

Many thanks to David for his assistance with the wheels and a great day out looking at and hooning around in some very nice cars... :twisted:
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CitroJim
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by CitroJim »

That's winderful Simon, I really enjoyed reading of yur Activa V6 and XM experiences and I can vouch for the XM, especially how hard it is to park :twisted:

I have driven a V6 Activa and I noted how quite it was. I believe in our autos it is the egarbox that makes the racket. nothing you can really hear distinctly but more of a white noise kind of sound... All that ATF knocking around at high pressure can't really be silent...

The XM I think is possibly better insulated..

Great news on the wheel balacing :-D Shows immediately how difficult getting a good result can be...
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Post by daviemck2006 »

When David took me out in his V6 activa I was so impressed. That is one car that could persuade me into a xantia. However I would prefer an auto so I could ba a lazy driver, or give it beans and still get some fun. I love the sound of a v6 or v8 getting used. Far far better than the tractor rumble of my diesel, even though it is very good for a diesel.
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by KP »

I would say if those tyres still have good tread they would make good spare tyres Simon. They don't need to be perfect then and will likely do most people with perished spares :)
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Re:

Post by Mandrake »

daviemck2006 wrote:When David took me out in his V6 activa I was so impressed. That is one car that could persuade me into a xantia. However I would prefer an auto so I could ba a lazy driver, or give it beans and still get some fun. I love the sound of a v6 or v8 getting used. Far far better than the tractor rumble of my diesel, even though it is very good for a diesel.
A well sorted normal Xantia V6 might be right up your alley then. (although finding a really well sorted one is getting very difficult now, I was very lucky to find the one I have now and it still needed things doing...)

They do have have a split personality - leave the suspension and gearbox in "normal" mode, and it is a nice relaxing lazy driver - smooth ride, lots of low down effortless torque that hardly lifts the rev counter. Pottering around town you're doing 1200-2200 rpm most of the time and it's not really until you exceed 60mph that you need to go beyond 2400 rpm.

But put the gearbox and suspension both in sport and it becomes a completely different car - tight tenacious handling (not Activa handling for sure, but pretty good by normal standards I think) and the engine revs very sweetly - maximum torque is at 4000 rpm but it's happy to rev to 6000. The gearbox in sport mode is very responsive to kickdowns and also aggressively changes down when you brake - so much so that if you brake from 60mph in 4th it is happy to change down to bring the rpm nearly up to 4000 to keep the engine on the boil near peak torque. Lots of fun. :mrgreen:

You don't get that kind of extreme flexibility from a Diesel - pulling strongly down to 1200 and revving to 6000 with power right through the range. (Peak power is at 5500 rpm and peak torque at 4000, with at least 80% of maximum torque all the way from 2000-5000 rpm)
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by daviemck2006 »

The next time I am at my Sisters in Carluke ill have to see if we can meet up. Steve told me at the national that his V6 can be a hooligan when wanted and a comfortable mile muncher when wanted. Best of both worlds then.
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by Mandrake »

I'm sure we can find a time Davie. We'll be moving to Motherwell in October, so I'll have to find myself a new set of "test roads" (ahem :lol: ) in the area as my current favourites will then be some distance away... :twisted:
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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by daviemck2006 »

I'm lucky here. I have a test "track" starts 1/2 mile from the house. There is along straight, hills, hairpin bend, bumpy corner and a bit that you get air at 90 or over. Perfection. If ever anyone is up in this corner of the world especially in an activa, I shall show you it. The c5 is not too good on it because it's too big and too much for comfort, but the c4 vts was awesome on it , and the c2 sensodrive was good fun on it when it worked.
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Post by Northern_Mike »

Xantias are rubbish when you are airborne.

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Re: Simon's new Xantia V6 blog

Post by daviemck2006 »

It's a pity we can't get high on the suspension over 25 mph, or at least on the c5, or could hit high on take off and it wouldn't bottom out! I tramped that road nearly non stop when I was courting wife no 2, in a Fiat stilo 1.6, which was a much better car than you would imagine.
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Post by CitroJim »

northern_mike wrote:Xantias are rubbish when you are airborne.
They're not intended to fly Mike. If they were Citroen would have fitted them with wings :)