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This is a very special project, and I was delighted to be asked to do it. The lady who owned this car unfortunately passed away, and her husband wanted the car restored to as new condition in memory of her.

The vehicle is a MK1 Audi TT, that had been involved is a small accident. The front of the vehicle had been damaged, but fortunately the chassis wasn't bent. The damage was limited to the radiators, intercooler and bodywork. Fortunately there are an enormous amount parts available for the TT, and everything can still be purchased new from the manufacturer. 

The plan is to rebuild the engine and gain a few extra horse power on the way. The suspension, brakes and underbody components will all be refurbished, along with the sills and the damaged components at the front of the car. The interior is in fair condition, and will clean up nicely, with a few replacement parts to bring it up to standard. The two front wings will be replaced, and the whole body will be repainted in the original colour. 

The pictures above show the car where it was being stored. It hadn't been driven for quite a long time and it had deteriorated as it had been left out in the weather. However, most of is appeared to be superficial and structurally it seemed to be in reasonable condition. As with some of these projects, the extent of any damage or issues only becomes apparent when it is dismantled.



So the story begins with collecting the vehicle from the owner. It was loaded on to the trailer and driven back home. There is also a donor car to be delivered once the body shell is painted as some of the mechanical parts are going to be used. The donor vehicle is the 225hp model, whereas this one is the 180hp one. The differences externally are really the wheels which are slightly wider, a twin tailpipe at the rear and a slightly different front grill. As the original is to be modified anyway, the original block will be retained so that the engine number remains the same.  

The first task was to jet wash the whole vehicle including the engine bay, to clean off the twenty odd years of dirt and debris. Quite surprisingly, it cleaned up much better than I thought it would, and allowed for a close inspection of what was good and the extent of the damage. 

The damaged components at the front were removed along with both wings and the sills. The TT has panels each side, that fit over the main sills and simply unbolt. These outer panels trap water and mud at each end, and corrosion can be a problem. Fortunately the sills on this car were sound, there was surface rust but this should shot blast clean. The rear panel is a little rusty, but mainly the body is in fair condition and will clean up without too many problems. 

A new battery was fitted and the engine fired up straight away, which made moving it around very much easier. Most of the electrical systems worked which is a real credit to German engineering. 

The interior was carefully taken apart and the carpet removed. The passenger seat was in perfect condition but the driver's seat base was damaged and another seat will need to be found, or the original one repaired. 

There is very little corrosion visible on the floor pan and both sills are in good condition except for the surface corrosion front and rear which is readily accessible. 

The roof fabric isn't very good, but new fabric is available at a reasonable price. 

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