After scheming and researching this for a while I've viewed a few Paos and bought one.
A week prior before that I took delivery of a K10 Micra on 26k miles(!) with the MA12S (1.3) engine and 5-speed manual box.
These two things are related.
The Micra is weirdly perfect inside but leaks rain into the centre console tray and fills the parcel shelf with great efficiency. The exhaust also sounds like it's going to fall off. Somehow it has 12 months MOT on it but I wouldn't bet on it passing the next with any ease.
For the Pao - I went for the cheapest one I viewed and haggled a bit too. The catch(es) here was that it was really quite dirty, featured a carpet stained by anti-freeze from the heater matrix going (previous owner thankfully fixed this), it has some rear arch rust from not being cleaned up there, a shrinking sunroof canvas that lets water in a certain angles, a pretty high milage 1l engine that had nearly no oil in, a 3-speed auto gearbox that judders at low speed, no MOT, slightly under-sized tyres, what I think are illegally small number-plates, crashy springs & dampers, and a rip or two in the headlining.
However, the seller was perfectly honest in stating that it is "solid", and these are all perfectly, if not enjoyably, solvable problems. I also get the make the car mine as I go through fixing it all. My engine swap and skills are not as ambituous or great as others, but I think this is going to be fun.
Some pictures... duh.
A minty Micra arrives.
Now there's a Pao
Rented a RugDoctor and did the seats...
Morris feeling left out and some Archaeology
Removing pieces and repainting
Glue and clothes peg madness to get the lip of the parcel shelf covering to stay down and stop peeling.
The grille and both bumpers are also now off for paint if the whether holds.
- Paint said grille and bumpers.
- Replace all the springs and dampers.
- LED lights everywhere because I'm weirdly obsessive about them.
- Un-seize rear brakes.
- Replace sunroof canvas.
- Replace all the seals where I can get off-the-shelf shapes that match.
- Engine & trans swap.
- Go faster bits.
For the engine swap I'll be chickening out and getting some great local guys to do it for me, I have problems I can't be arsed with solving in doing the swap - the best way to remove the engine seems to be to just drop the whole subframe out the bottom, and I don't have a lift. Plus I barely have any metric tools!