Zel's Fleet Blog - Xantia Activa, BX, Jag XJ-S, Sinclair C5, Mercedes 208D, AC Model 70.

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

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Zelandeth »

It's the fact that there are four of us and therefore four bikes - one of which is the C5 which is huge, heavy and supremely awkward. Plan is for that and probably one other go on the roof and the other two either in the back or on a tow bar mounted carrier. Still then leaves space for the four of us and luggage.

Dog is the bigger consideration really. He does fit in the back of the Xantia but it's not great for any longer trips. Plus he covers the interior in fluff every time he's in there - leather seats will make cleaning a lot easier.

Have had a soft spot for the Cherokee since a young age (when one of our friends had one), and the first gen UK cars are starting to get scarce now (but haven't got to the classic status where prices start to rise), so if I want one it seems like a sensible time to grab one.

...also a bit of a target of opportunity with a nice looking one turning up only a couple of hours away, in Limited SE spec as well which is a bonus. It's one of those cars I might not keep forever but would like to have owned.

Will be tomorrow I go to look at it actually as they're putting a fresh MOT on it first thing in the morning despite it having a couple of months left to run, which is always a nice touch.

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CitroJim
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by CitroJim »

Ahh yes, four bikes and a dog will be a problem for roof bars ;)

All understood now!

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Zelandeth »

I'd have jumped at a Xantia Estate in Executive trim to be honest if I'd seen one at the right price without either known issues or an intergalactic mileage. Only reason I give the miles any consideration really is that I'd like others in the household to be able to use it from time to time if they need to without worrying that something unexpected is going to go wrong. I know that can happen at any mileage, but the law of averages is stacked against you more with the more miles under the wheels. I know my Xantia has had a number of gremlins the whole time I've owned it, which aren't a problem for someone who is mechanically minded and can be worked around, but it does mean that I'm not comfortable loaning it out to the rest of the household.

I'd *love* an XM or CX, but with Citroen's increasingly "we don't care" approach to heritage vehicles and the resulting scarcity of an increasing number of spares I just couldn't make it stack up from a practical standpoint. I spend enough time with that headache with the Skoda.

I did give some other estates a look in, having been a Saab owner for well over ten years now I really fancy a shot of an 80s era Volvo 240 or similar estate, just to see what they're like in the real world compared to the Saab - but not for the prices they're changing hands for in decent shape. Likewise Mercs of the same vintage if they're in decent shape. Which really left me with limited options...The vast majority of what's out there is just so soul destroyingly boring that I really couldn't be bothered with it.

I wanted something a bit left field with a bit of character to it and it to be properly comfortable.

Figured this ticks those boxes...

Image

Image

Interestingly I've never owned a vehicle with more than four cylinders nor one with wood trim...

Always reckon you can tell a lot about a car from the interior, and after 22 years the factory floor mats still being there tends to be a good sign. Will be digging out a buyer's guide later on though to see if there are any particular things to look for other than the obvious rust, leaks, rust, expensive noises, that the auto box behaves, and of course rust.

For the record, if I do get it while I live in town I will find the opportunity at some point to take it out somewhere and test the off road credentials properly from time to time!

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by CitroJim »

Should do the job a treat Zel but I have to admit not my cup of tea at all... Very 'Yank' isn't it...

Looks like it's been excellently cared for and that does indeed count for a great deal...

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Zelandeth »

Yank cars do tend to be rather polarising I've found, there are a lot of design elements that we just never got over here, especially inside. I do freely admit though that they didn't have the foggiest idea of what the term ergonomic design meant at this point in time, so don't expect any logic to be applied to where anything is! All the warning lights for a start aren't even in the instrument panel...

I lost interest when they gave it a facelift in 1998 which was intended to make it more appealing to the European market. Just became yet another four wheel drive then as far as I was concerned. Kinda why I wanted to grab this before they're all gone.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by CitroJim »

Yes, looks like the dash was not even designed... It just happened randomly :lol:

Maybe a job given to the YTS trainee on his first day in the job perhaps...

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Zelandeth »

I can't remember which car he was describing but I recall just about choking on a cup of coffee due to laughing when James May when describing the ergonomics of a car (can't remember which one I'm afraid) stated that "it looks like someone loaded a bunch of switchgear into a Blunderbuss and fired it at the dashboard" but it definitely fits here too!

That said, not the worst ergonomics I've come across...Leyland Atlantean wins that one. Recall one trip out in the open topper that First Aberdeen have when it started to drizzle and I suddenly had a moment of "where on earth is the switch for the wipers?!?" The answer I eventually figured out was one of about ten silver toggle switches to my right roughly level with my right knee. That's the same bus in which you cannot see the speedometer unless your forehead is pressed right up against the windscreen because it's directly in line with the hub of the steering wheel! Not a problem on the open road as she runs out of revs at 42mph, but a pain when you're driving in a 20 or 30 area...

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by CitroJim »

Zelandeth wrote:I can't remember which car he was describing but I recall just about choking on a cup of coffee due to laughing when James May when describing the ergonomics of a car (can't remember which one I'm afraid) stated that "it looks like someone loaded a bunch of switchgear into a Blunderbuss and fired it at the dashboard" but it definitely fits here too!
:rofl2: :rofl2: Love it.... And so true too...

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Zelandeth »

So failed to get to look at the Jeep today, because the garage the dealer uses for MOT work ended up running late, so it's still waiting for a test. Still, a nice surprise that they are insisting on putting a fresh test on a car this age when it still has a couple of months to go. Most places would just chuck it out the door as it is. Gives a good vibe that they're confident that it's in good order. There's a bunch of other American cars in the background of several photos as well so it would seem that at least someone there is a bit of an enthusiast.

Annoyingly I don't have a lift tomorrow so will have to get there by public transport. That'll be fun and no doubt the train fare will cost nearly as much as the car!

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by CitroJim »

You always have to wait for the good stuff Zel ;) It'll be worth it...

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Zelandeth
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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Zelandeth »

Still waiting. In fairness the seller has been nothing but helpful and apologetic, and it's not really his fault the garage are being useless and I get the impression that he's rather ticked off with them.

They're away on a family trip tomorrow and we have a birthday here on Saturday, so looks like it will be Sunday. Hopefully they'll hold it so nobody else gets it on Saturday...I have made it quite clear that provided it's been accurately described that I fully intend to buy it...

In other news I poked the Xantia this afternoon for the first time in far too long. The upper tensioner is actually fine... it's the eccentric one at the bottom that's a bit gritty. Give you two guesses what is the single bit of that system I don't have in stock! I also remember that last time I tried to remove it that the hex bit I was using shattered because it was so tight. So have just put it back together and glared at it for a bit for now.

As it is with the Jeep potentially arriving I really need to thin the herd a bit. Skoda is on the list already (I know someone on here has expressed interest so I'll obviously drop them a PM first), and the Xantia is probably the second to go...that way I'd actually be able to get everything on the drive!

It'll be priced to sell as the car really doesn't owe me anything, especially given how she performed in the madness when my father fell ill, and I know that a 206K mile Xantia with a fair number of the usual gremlins isn't worth much!

I hate selling cars, but I've really been feeling lately that I really feel like a change...Saab is staying put though. Probably take some of the funds from selling the Skoda and pump them into getting some of the issues it has sorted, not least heading off some of the rust issues which are starting to become a real concern.

...and fix the blasted rev counter!

Do really wish I had one extra parking space though...but that's always the way isn't it? Not going back to the madness at my parent's house though...think there was a point that I actually had eight cars on the drive! ...for some reason they never complained either.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Zelandeth »

Well that was not to be it seems. MOT revealed major rust in both sills, so back to pondering options...hmm...

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by CitroJim »

Land Rover. A nice series Safari model ;)

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by Hell Razor5543 »

I didn't know that Land Rover and Citroen had made a car together. A Land Rover with all its' normal off road capabilities, but with the suspension and space of a Citroen CX Safari. Nice.

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Re: Zel's Fleet Blog (Xantia, 107 and "others")

Post by CitroJim »

There have been hydropneumatic conversions carried out to Land Rovers James...