Chris Wolsey’s 2002 Tii – COTM September 2020

1971 2002tii. Vin number 270028 making it the 28th RHD tii ever built. The colour is the factory Bristol Grey. A rare colour that was discontinued in 1971 making this a very rare car indeed. I’m still yet to see another tii in this colour!
I bought the car with my father in April 2015 in Newcastle, County Down, Northern Ireland. It was advertised as a part restoration. The seller had started the restoration many years ago and was now unable to complete the job. The car was partially in primer and appeared to us, to be near completion. A deal was done with the seller and the car was taken to a local bodyshop to have the bodywork completed.
Unfortunately after a trip to a media blaster, the car was in far worse condition than first thought. The previous owner had made a dogs dinner of trying to restore the car. Massive amounts of filler, covering ugly welds and rust. The body shop started to cut out some of the rot but progress was painfully slow. After an entire year of little progress it was apparent the car was too rough and they where clearly out of their depth. The car was then taken to classic car restoration expert in Limerick, Ireland. The car had a complete restoration. It needed almost an entire new shell. Parts that where replaced included new rear quarters, back panel, front panel, both doors, boot lid, boot floor, front floor panels and a new bonnet!
With the car needing a complete restoration, I decided to make a few modifications to make it my dream 02. I sourced a 5 speed gearbox and an LSD to improve the drivability of the car. The engine was totally rebuilt with electronic ignition. Suspension was treated to Eibach springs and Bilstein shocks.
I was always a fan of the MOMO Cloverleaf 13 inch wheels that were a dealership option, only in Italy.
I managed to find a set for sale on an Italian classified website and convinced the seller to ship them to Ireland. I then found a set of NOS Italian indicators to match the wheels. I also preferred the look of the early small bumpers so I bought a set of new Stainless Steel ones and had the holes of the side trim welded up to complete the early look.
The interior was changed also. I went with a back seat from a later 1602 that had a centre fold down armrest. And I was lucky enough to find a set of e21 Recaros for the front. Everything was reupholstered in a beautiful brown leather. A period correct Raid steering wheel and a set of Coco Mats finish off the perfect look.

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