RE: Supercharged MG TF | Spotted

RE: Supercharged MG TF | Spotted

Thursday 5th September

Supercharged MG TF | Spotted

Replace the K Series with a K20 and you're onto a winner - aren't you?



While it may seem a heck of a long time ago now, the MG TF was well received when it was a new car. Indeed even when it was relaunched later in the 2000s, Autocar said that "on the road it is still a great little sports car", praising its steering, balance and compact dimensions. Replacing the F's Hydragas with more conventional suspension proved a worthwhile decision for the TF and its dynamics. Sadly, much like the Mk3 Toyota MR2 in fact, the mid-engined layout that proved so beneficial to the MG's handling compromised its practicality; with the front-engined MX-5 as perhaps its closest rival, the TF was a harder sell as an everyday sports car.

Then there were the K Series head gasket problems. We won't say much on it here, because it's been dwelt on a great deal, and fixes have been devised, but it must have had an impact on buyers' confidence as secondhand purchase. Especially so, presumably, with the Japanese reliability offered elsewhere in the sector.


But what if the two could be combined? Bring together the dependability of a Japanese powertrain with a TF chassis and the result would be fantastic, surely. That's what this car aims to achieve, a Honda K20a2 - so that's the EP3 Civic Type R engine - conversion on a 2002 TF. It's been performed and now sold by Maidstone Sports Cars, self-billed leading Honda conversion specialist of the UK, and looks absolutely brilliant.

Because the engine swap is just the start. Also treated to racier cams, an Integra Type R inlet manifold and Jackson Racing supercharger, this TF is now producing 350hp, which should be more than enough to get on with given an 1,100kg kerbweight. Its gearbox has been rebuilt with fresh synchros, and there's a Wavetrac diff to help get that power to the ground - all the way to 165mph, it's claimed.


In fact, the TF comes equipped with everything it's likely to need to make a perfect (yet unassuming) track day machine. Brakes are now by AP Racing, with discs, calipers and lines uprated; Nitron coilovers have been fitted, along with a rose-jointed rear end, adjustable ARBs and polyurethane bushes; the tyres are now Yokohama AO48s and the subframes have been seam welded and strengthened to ensure the little thing can deal with the extra strain now being placed on it. Oh yes, and it makes flames - always a good thing.

MSC has a detailed build thread on its project, describing the TF as "transformed... into a real track weapon", with power that "just keeps pushing and pushing". All very exciting; apparently it'll do 0-100mph in less than 10 seconds, too...


Frankly we're sold, the combination of all that hardware in such an unlikely - yet actually quite suitable - donor vehicle quite enticing. The price could well be a sticking point, though, given the TF is currently for sale at Β£25k. That not only buys all manner of alternatives from Caterham, Lotus and Zenos, but also, of course, much more serious performance cars that could be turned to track use - Porsches, M3s and so on.

But you'll see plenty of those at track days, which isn't something that could be said about the TF. The potential here for fun is enormous, with a chassis optimised for track use and one of the finest four-cylinder engines in history zipping it along. Bravo to MSC for the idea and what appears to be fine execution - we look forward to hearing more from whoever is the next lucky driver...


SPECIFICATION - MG TF
Engine:
1,795cc four-cyl
Transmission: 6-speed manual, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 160@6,900rpm
Torque (lb ft): 128@4,700rpm
MPG: 37
CO2: 179g/km
First registered: 2002
Recorded mileage: 32,000
Price new: c. Β£15,000
Yours for: Β£24,995

See the original advert here.

(Specs for standard car)

Author
Discussion

CharlieAlphaMike

Original Poster:

405 posts

51 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
With respect...How much? eek

geeks

4,707 posts

85 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Fantastic idea. Bonkers money! It's probably overpriced, but I can't imagine it was cheap to put together. A good advert for what they can do, just not convinced it's a popular enough idea to warrant selling off the show car for £25k. Shame really as a sleeper, it's cracking idea!

Butter Face

19,292 posts

106 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
That’s quite a thing. My Supercharged EP3 with 360bhp is fast, this must be bonkers!

WCZ

7,151 posts

140 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
no thanks, for the money I'd rather have

bmw z4m
https://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/...

porsche cayman s
https://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/...

vauxhall vxR 220 turbo + £5k change
https://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/...

mercedes slk 55 amg 2014
https://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/...

but I can see as a sleeper it has appeal as the standard car was really slow and people won't expect it!

JimboM3

274 posts

156 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
That would get you in an SC Honda Elise S1 that weighs 300kg less and I know which I would prefer.

J

AmosMoses

3,401 posts

111 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
£15k? laugh

Butter Face

19,292 posts

106 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
AmosMoses said:
£15k? laugh
£25k! wink

Type R Tom

2,590 posts

95 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
I'm not sure I'd pay that when an Elise with that conversion costs about the same.

For example:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/lotus-elise-s2-honda-su...

Edited by Type R Tom on Thursday 5th September 12:36

And7R

52 posts

2 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
£25k WTF??!!

Hahaha lol what a bargain.

fred bloggs

360 posts

146 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
I actually think the price is good, considering the work gone into it, and the level of performance on offer.

AP brakes, nitron coilovers, rose joints are not cheap. and neither are superchargers.

Edited by fred bloggs on Thursday 5th September 12:39

Ian974

2,127 posts

145 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
I get the idea of it, but it is incredibly big money considering the base car and that as mentioned, a K20 elise could be had for similar money (not sure if it'd be supercharged though).
Can't question the work done, but it just doesn't seem like the right car to start with.

I would question the wisdom of a set of T1R's on it with that much power though!

Jon_S_Rally

583 posts

34 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
The price was bound to upset the impossible to please PH brigade, but doing this kind of thing isn't cheap and people always overstate the value of modified cars.

Personally, I wouldn't have bothered with the supercharger myself. A 240-250bhp normally aspirated K20 in this would be plenty. The TF always appealed to me much more than the Japanese offerings to be honest. The MX-5 has never done much for me, nor the MR-2 Roadster.

Strugs

473 posts

175 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
That'd be a hoot, and kudos for doing it, but - no - not at £25k..

smartie93

61 posts

111 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Ian974 said:
I get the idea of it, but it is incredibly big money considering the base car and that as mentioned, a K20 elise could be had for similar money (not sure if it'd be supercharged though).
Can't question the work done, but it just doesn't seem like the right car to start with.

I would question the wisdom of a set of T1R's on it with that much power though!
I spotted the ditchfinders as well. £25k and you get some of the naffest rubber possible, it will be lethal in the wet! I thought the advert said it had AD08Rs?

MRichards99

203 posts

74 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Ian974 said:
I would question the wisdom of a set of T1R's on it with that much power though!
Good spot - wet roundabouts must be lethal in a TF of that power, it's easy enough to face the wrong way in a standard power MX5 with T1Rs!

E36Dan

7,055 posts

114 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Looks a right tt to check the oil on

mstrbkr

7,060 posts

144 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
They'll never sell that for £25k. As an engineering exercise it is cool, but who wants that for this money?

£25k buys the best Honda S2000 money can buy, and a supercharger conversion. That's also a mid engined car ( wink ) with a supercharged Honda engine; and is superior dynamically. Probably superior future value as well.

AmosMoses

3,401 posts

111 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Butter Face said:
AmosMoses said:
£15k? laugh
£25k! wink
Oh my god, I misread that and thought it was funny. £25k though thats even funnier laugh

matjk

776 posts

86 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Id Imagine its fun but why anyone would spent that much on a TF is beyond me. It was just a bit of a stty car to start with, Lotus would be be the obvious choice, but i guess its been done to death . IMO its all a bit mehhhh, something truly bonkers like the Aston V8 Cygnet is worth the effort but who would want this

Toyoda

1,157 posts

46 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
One for the crappy plates thread.