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Daihatsu YRV turbo 130 (off to pastures new).

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So i have been between employment since June after telling the Rac where to stick their job.
Trouble is after 17 years of having a orange van outside my front door i now need a means of commuting (unless i get a job that supplies wheels).

Still my situation means that although i have various vehicles scattered on my drive a dedicated work ride was a must.
I plan on working local to home so a cheap fuel efficient old ride would do me fine.

I fancied a diesel Bx and came close to buying a cheap one in south London that was gassing into it's coolant but thought better of it.

Looking through ebay i spotted a genuine giffer owned Daihatsu YRV turbo that had sprung a fluid leak and lost drive for a reasonable £400.
Trouble was it was banana yellow flavour.

But the thought of a small jap automatic car with a turbo and 130bhp did seem like the perfect to and from work car solution so i started looking around for one in a more subtle colour.

After a quick scan of the usual sites i found a cheap broken Daihatsu in the wastelands near Walsall.


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I have never owned a Daihatsu but always admired their quirky,awkward styling and especially how they liked to do turbo or 4x4 versions of rather mudane shopping cars.


There were only 230 turbo YRV's sold here as they were not a cheap car when at the time a Saxo vts was almost £2000 cheaper.


I think i am right in saying Toyota own or have a controling share in Daihatsu.

The YRV engine is lifted straight from a 1.3 Yaris with Daihatsu's own turbo set up fitted.


So this black YRV (young recreation vehicle) had been sitting since the summer after smoke and a burning smell was spotted coming out from the drive belt side of the engine.

A local garage pulled the bumper and head light off (really quick and easy) to gain better access to the belt and drive pulleys but all seemed well so they changed the old belt only for the smell and smoke to continue.


It was decided that although the alternator pulley rotated ok by hand it was seizing up and over heating the drive belt when put under load.

The alternator is buried down low at the back of the engine and a bit of a faff to swap.


So i bought it unseen in it's semi naked conition and had it transported 165 miles to my place where it turned up after dark so i couldn't inspect my rash purchase until the morning.

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Saturday morning and lets see what we've got for our 300 groats



Very understated graphics here.



It polishes up very well.



Not a lot of spare room but all the important bits are ok to get to.



I loosely clipped the front back on,boy racer indeed.


Although it's been living up in the Midlands the car was originally supplied by local Daihatsu dealer Express garage in Herne Bay so it's sort of come back home.

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The alternators bottom fixing bolt was too long to be removed and hit the inner wing when extracted and i was in no mood to unbolt the mountings to lower the engine to clear it so i cut it in half to remove it.

A new bolt can pass through from the other direction when it goes back together.

After dropping the bottom arm and pulling the driveshaft from the hub so i could push the shaft tight against the sump i was just able to jiggle the alternator down and onto the floor.

It's going to be a right slag to get back in again.


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A secondhand alternator has been despatched to me and due here wednesday so while the front is off i thought it would be wise to clean up and treat the exposed surface rust.


These little cars do seem to rust for fun.





Found some rust converter.



Covered with some good old red oxide.


Alas the end of the sills are paper thin under the plastic skirts.

May attend to that tomorrow while the weather is so mild.

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While clearing our my shed the other week i came across a five litre tin of black enamel chassis paint.
I had used some previously on my Scimitar and it covered well and flashed off quick too but was rather too shiny for my liking but with a quick layer of rattle can stone chip over the top it dulled it down and i think it's a good enough way of slowing down the rust.


That'll do.


I fitted this earlier but i need to clean all the melted bits of drive belt from the other five pulleys but lost my mojo for today.


So i took the spare twin rear pipe that came with the car up the shed for a clean up.
It only has a single pipe currently fitted so i'm sure this one once fitted will make the little car faster and women will fall at my feet.

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It only has a single pipe currently fitted so i'm sure this one once fitted will make the little car faster and women will fall at my feet.


You already have a Subaru BRAT, surely enough for the ladies of North Kent?  ;-)


Anyway, top purchase, and good 'save for the nation', given their rarity.


I'm sure there are a few tucked away with enthusiasts, but whenever I see a YRV, they seem to suffer from owner 'can't be arsed-ness'

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Mojo has now been restored and so it's back outside and operation "clean out all the bits of burnt drive belt from the pulleys" has been accomplished.

A new belt was fitted (after googling how it went back on) and now i have a happy non smoking non smelling Daihatsu.


I have been alarmed by fluid collecting in a recess between the cylinder head and exhaust manifold.

Everytime i go to start the engine the fluid is there and boils away after running for a couple of minutes.


I had nearly convinced myself that i must have a porous cylinder head but realised today it's just rain water coming in thru the bonnet's air intake and collecting on the head.


All the bits that were in the boot are now refitted and i was all ready to go for a run when one of the scabby turbo coolant pipes decided to start leaking.



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Today i used some "Q bond" to patch up the pin holed turbo cooling pipe and took the little Datty for a spin.


My only other auto in the fleet is an early 90's Honda CRX and although the four speed box works fine it is a busy place to sit and it certainly can't be claimed to be a sporty drivers car and quick it is not.


The YRV is also a four speed auto but with buttons on the wheel to shift the gears too.

It's not fast acting like a vw dsg box but ain't too bad.


If you leave it in drive and floor the pedal it gets away really well the little turbo spins up quickly and it gets up to 70mph using 3rd gear with ease and if you play with the shift buttons it is a right laugh.

Best bit is the car is not reving its arse off at 70mph like the Honda does.

For a little auto boxed car it is long legged and relaxing but if you drop it one gear it spins up like a right holigan.


Not so good are the brakes.

The engine is too powerful for them..


It has drums on the rear and the front discs are only 245mm skinny jobs.

If i keep it i will have a look to see if something bigger can fitted.


I took the sill skirts off too to have a look at the rot.




This is the worst one but can be cut out and rebuilt and remain hidden behind the sill cover.

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The brakes on the YRV are supposed to be pretty decent as they're used as an upgrade for other Daihatsu.


I think they're the same as the Sirion/Storia I've got and they are fine, on that, similar power, 130bhp, but my car is a little lighter.

I have D-sport discs and Ferodo ds2500 pads on the front and D-sport shoes on the rear drums.


edit: My mistake, the YRV turbo has bigger discs than the M1xx Sirion, as they're used as an upgrade for these, so they should be ok. Maybe try some better pads?

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  • Joey spud changed the title to Daihatsu YRV turbo 130 (off to pastures new).

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