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Old 7th August 2006, 19:40   #1
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Thumbs down M800 Suspension out in 24000kms - Is this normal?

I recently picked up a M800 from the 2nd hand market for my inlaws. The car is a 1998 model and has run only about 24,000 kms in 8 years.

I noticed that the steering was very hard. Later I found out that the suspension lower arm was damaged and replaced them.

Is this normal? Does suspensions get ruined in just 24000kms of running assuming the odometer was not tampered? Will the steering be hard due to bad tyres? The car still runs on the OE 1998 tyres. Will I have to check balance and allignment right away or can I wait for a while? I have already done 5 tyre rotation.

What are the other things I need to watch out for in an low mileage old car such as this? I will be making a straight 800kms drive to Kerala in a months time.

Last edited by mail4ajo : 7th August 2006 at 19:41.
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Old 7th August 2006, 20:13   #2
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get it serviced thoroughly, replace all fluids from brake fluid to engine coolants..
suspension yes if you have worked on it, get it aligned and at least the front wheels balanced..

dont forget to clean the carbs and tune the car proper.. that reminds me good idea to get the gas tank also cleaned just in case if there is rust or dirt..

happy motoring
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Old 7th August 2006, 20:26   #3
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If a car is driven 50-60 km a day, 22 days a month, then an 8-year old car would show 100,000 km to 126,000 km on the odometer. This would read as 00000 to 26000. Your car reads 24000.

You noticed that the steering was very hard. You found out that the suspension lower arm was damaged. Ever wonder why?

If the car had taken a serious bang into a pothole on the road at speed,
it could have knocked the suspension out of alignment, or worse, bent suspension components.

This could also happen if the wheels had ever violently contacted a concrete or stone curb at speed.

It doesn't take 25,000 km of running for that to happen. It can happen with a carelessly driven new car too.

I would recommend, you identify and replace all the worn out rubber parts in the front suspension. This includes the grommets on the anti-roll bar. And the rubbers at the top of the McPherson strut towers. Eight year old rubber grommets would most certainly harden and fail.

And of course steering misalignment can lead to bad tires. And bad tires can make steering hard.

A computerized alignment machine can tell a lot about damaged suspension geometry.

Worn out and damaged suspension components must be replaced. There are no two ways about that.

Ram
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Old 7th August 2006, 20:34   #4
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Yes for M800, its possible. Also depends on how carefully the previous owner has driven. Your steering may have been tightened to hide the noise fron the rack. Yes steering will be affected by old tyres (8 yrs old). High time you change them. Get your suspension work & tyres replacement done simultaneously. Both are interdependent to ensure you a smooth ride. Naturally you will have to get the wheel alignment & balancing done one you've new rubber.
As regarding the other things, your tune-up which includes carb cleaning, changing all the filters, setting engine timing (pref wid a timing gun) replacing plugs, point condensor, etc. dont forget to check the condition of the brakes. Replace the pads/ liners if need be. Battery, alternator charging is also imp. to check for. Lastly, your regular servicing.
Doing all this should ensure you a hassle free drive to KL. All the best.

az

Last edited by autozealot : 7th August 2006 at 20:36.
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Old 7th August 2006, 22:17   #5
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1998 model and 24000.That pretty less run for a car 8 years old.Even i have a 1998 model 800 and it came with cross ply thin tyres so if u say your car has the original tyres then it must be this thin ones.Steering is very light with these thin tyres if everything in the suspension is in place.Getting The alignment done will help only if the condition of the suspension is good.If the suspension itself is no point in getting the alignment done as everything will be back to its original bad self in no time.Go to a MASS and ask them to check everything out.Although suspension parts in an 800 are not expensive will set you back by around 5 to 6 k for entire suspension overhaul.
Give it to the mass for servicing and they will pinpoint each and everything that your car needs attention to.
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Old 8th August 2006, 08:18   #6
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I agree with ram and humyum..........Though M800 is entry level car it is pretty well engineered for india roads, as it was born at home. One of real cute cars to drive in city I must say. It is very rear that suspension breaks down at 24000 kms. you really need to beat the hell out of that machine for that to happen. Owned M8oo 1995 model (used car) which I recently exchanged for Baleno. I had log in 90000 kms with no major problems and I have used it pretty rough.

Just get it checked if the car has done only 24000 kms as on OD.
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Old 8th August 2006, 08:35   #7
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I have a doubt; WOuld a tyre last this long? WOnt it be more brittle etc?
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Old 8th August 2006, 09:42   #8
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Hi, I drive an 800. Its only four years old though its already done 51000km, here in Bombay. I did have some trouble with my suspension, at around 30000km. When I would go over a speed breaker, just as the front wheels went over the top of the hill, there would be a clicking/tapping sound in the front right. The service centre could not identify the cause. They replaced the rubber washer (or whatever it is) at the top of the Mcpherson strut but to no avail. And then one day, the sound just stopped.
After all this driving, now I am beginning to feel like the damping has reduced a little and the springs are playing a bigger part, but then, with all the Bombay potholes, I guess that is expected. So, if your car has trouble at 24000 km, there is something wrong. I agree with Ram. It could be more a result of careless driving, because the 800 is, in spite of its size and lack of weight, a pretty tough car for our roads. I would recommend having its alignment checked thoroughly.
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Old 8th August 2006, 20:51   #9
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Thanks for your suggestions. Replaced the front suspension lower arms and struds. Also got the brake overhauled, replacing the brake pads and 2 cylinders. The master brake cylinder has showed slight sign of a leak. How long will it last?

I have rotated the tyres and checked the alligment and balance. Lke Jkdas stated, it has become brittle. The mech said it will last about 3000kms. Hope this remains intact on my drive home.
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Old 8th August 2006, 21:56   #10
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[quote=mail4ajo]The master brake cylinder has showed slight sign of a leak. How long will it last?


If you change it right away it would be great. If not than you are at risk.
Keep on checking the brake-oil level everyday & keep topping up.
Dont take chances with the brake. I too got it replaced as soon as I realised that there was a oil leak from the master cylinder. The oil had found its way from the m. cylinder onto my brake pedal.

So you decide now.

Last edited by autozealot : 8th August 2006 at 22:00.
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Old 9th August 2006, 01:17   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by autozealot
The oil had found its way from the m. cylinder onto my brake pedal.
Thats exactly where I saw the oil leak. Asked the mech and he confirmed the case. Will get that done soon.

Does the car's maintainence free battery require any sort of maintainence? Not sure how it works, although I have one on my bike.
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Old 9th August 2006, 01:22   #12
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[quote=mail4ajo] Does the car's maintainence free battery require any sort of maintainence?

If you have doubts just visit the battery dealer once. its ok if its not giving you morning starting trouble.
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