|Engine||Ford Pinto 2.0L - 205 EFI block and head from 1987 Sierra - Early pinto carb inlet manifold with 32/36DGAV carb and fitted with Kent Cams FR32 cam kit|
|Gearbox||Ford Type 9 - 5 speed|
|Axle||MK4 Cortina fitted with Capri 2.8I limited slip differential|
|Front Suspension||MK4 Cortina full front subfame complete with late 2.3 Cortina power steering rack|
|Rear Suspension||Mk4 Cortina trailing arms fitted with PolySport poly-bush kit for better axle location|
|Accessories||The car has a few modifications from the factory standard including - Electrically operated pop up headlights, Larger rear spoiler, Sierra radiator mounted in nose of car and fitted with twin cooling fans, Sierra RS Cosworth bonnet vents. The front brakes have been uprated with vented disc and 4 pot calipers. Twin master cylinder bias adjustable pedal assembly - Power steering.|
With the summers of 2007 and 2008 being pretty dire and having converted the westfield to Aeroscreen and therefore not really having the opportunity to dive it I decided that I should get something a little more practical whilst still being a bit different the westfield was a nice car but as I have said on that cars page - it's not a Caterham and will always be a pretender.
I am not sure exactly what drew me to Ginetta, I had been aware of the marque since having Hillman Imps and seeing the lovely little G15 coupes at various classis car shows but not much more than that until reading an article on the pretty little G4 coupe and it was whilst looking for a G4 that I saw a G31 for sale on Pistonheads. It was white and looked in reasonable order but was the other end of the country.
I stuck a post asking about the G31 on Pistonheads and as a result was contacted by a guy selling one asking me if I was interested - In due coarse I arranged to see the car and externally the car was very nice but internally it was very poor and would have required extensive work and the location of some very hard to find to get it sorted out so I passed it over.
The Ginetta Owners club have a half decent website and I placed a wanted ad on there and it was whilst monitoring the classisfied of the GOC site that another G31 came up for sale. The specification looked good and after a chat with the owner Paul I went and had a look at the car and subsequently agreed to buy it.
The Ginetta G31 is the 2+2 model from the Ginetta cars range of sporting saloons which includes four different types of body :
The G26 - A full four seater 2 door saloon with pop up headlights using the Cortina MK3/4/5 as the donor
The G28 - A 2+2 Coupe with conventional headlights allowing a higher bonnet line to accomodate the ford V6 engine
The G30 - A full four seater 2 door saloon with conventional headlights allowing a higher bonnet line to accomodate the ford V6 engine
The G31 -A 2+2 Coupe with pop up headlights using the Cortina MK3/4/5 as the donor
From information on the Ginetta owners club wesite around 250 G26's were made - a handfull of the G28 and 30 made it from the moulds and around 70 of the G31 models.My G31 is quite a well known car in the world of Ginetta's as early in its life it was fitted with a chipped Sierra RS Cosworth engine - Later on the engine was changed to a 205 EFI Pinto with a Turbo Technics turbo installation comprising of an RS Cosworth intercooler a modified Weber carb for pressurised blow through application a turbo Technics plenum and a Garret T2 turbo.
At some stage in its life the Turbo and manifold had been removed for whatever reason and when I bought the car it had been converted back to normally aspirated but still maintaining the modified Weber and TT plenum - The exhaust was an interesting kit of parts that ranged from a 3" + tail pipe a 4 branch manifold and a sysrten in btween with diameters ranging from 1 5/8 to 1 3/4
The rolling restoration
After getting the car home I went through the list of checks usually carried out at an MOT starting with the obvious bits like lights, wipers washers etc. a headlight and the washers were not working along with a dash light - headlight was due to a couple of broken connections and the washer due to not having a non-return valve which allows all the fluid to drain from the pump and the bottle being so far from the pump it does not self prime.
Wheel bearings were servicable with just a little play and the brakes worked fine and no leaks all the hoses had been replaced at some stage with stainless braided hoses so non problems there. I then noticed a small leak from the pinion seal on the power steering rack so I collected a seal kit and took the rack out and replaced the seal. whilst doing this job I noticed that the lower steering column had fouled the exhaust manifold and the manifold had been adjusted with a hammer together with a lot of spacing washers under an engine mount to get clearance - as this was not the right way to the job I took the manifold off and the rest of the bitsa exhaust to do the job properly and put the mounts etc. back to where they should be - the Gearbox cross member had also been significantly spaced to drop it down to clear the exhaust
This picture shows the exhaust welds and some of the changes in section through the system It really was only fit for scrap.
I chopped up the tubular manifold and rewelded the joints to get a better angle on the Y pieces so that I could get a good clearance around the rack coupling but in the end went searching around for a good aftermarket system that could be made to fit. Thankfully ASHLEY Exhausts still manufacture a good sports exhaust for the Ford Cortina MK3/4/5 but there was no way that the exhaust was going to fit with the power steering rack. It was also clear that the gearbox crossmember had been significantly modified from its original position and that it would also need changing so that the exhaust would clear it.
The Ashley was ordered and I also obtained a complete MK3 subframe from E-bay that came with the Rack and lower steering column - e-bay also came up with a repair bushing for the steering rack coupling.
A new gearbox mounting subframe was built using 3mm x 25mm angle iron after all the old modification brackets were cut off - it also became apparant that the engine was not in the factory position and infact it has been mounted 1.5" further back in the chassis than standard so the mounting had to be completly new design.