• long-term fleet #2004 #Porsche #911 #996 #GT3 . It’s MoT and annual service time for some of the fleet while one intrepid contributor decided to go for a walk this month…

    It’s big bill time. That time of year when everything needs replacing or paying for in the same month.

    Insurance. Renewed with Mannings Insurance who are, still the best possible policy you can get if you want to track your car on a regular basis. Although this year there have been a few key changes to the policy. Namely that European track days are no longer covered as part of the premium, which means each Euro track day now attracts a £250 premium, which while sounding a lot, is still considerably cheaper than any of the other alternatives. Unlimited UK track days are still included in the policy, which still makes it a bit of a bargain considering most other policies available carry very similar premiums with a limited number of days. In order to offset a small increase in my premium due to last year’s claim I’ve significantly reduced my policy requirements, dropping from unlimited annual mileage down to 3000 miles per year and removing both business and commuting usage. I could have reduced it even further by removing my wife from the policy, and given that she has only ever driven the car twice that would be no hardship. But there is always the possibility she may need to use it in an emergency, so she’s stayed on it. In total the changes have shaved several hundred quid off the premium bringing it in significantly under what I was paying last year. Small mercies.

    Road Fund Licence. This one has been a bit of a tough choice. In reality, I could probably get away with SORN’ing the car for the next few months, letting it sit snug under its duvet in the lock-up during the worst of the weather, but the thought of that is quite depressing. So I’ve dumped another 12 months of tax on FAB so at the very least I have the option of taking it for a spin if time and weather permits. In the scheme of things it’s an insignificant sum, the car’s age ensuring the bill doesn’t sting quite as much as it would on a more modern high performance car. In fact, I’ve been invited to a Mission Motorsports charity supercar day at Anglesey later this month, so the insurance and road tax may come in very useful.

    Servicing. I’ve always over-serviced and maintained this car, so it makes perfect sense (to me at least) to keep this up regardless of the fact that my mileage has dwindled to virtually zero over the last few months. So off it went to Sports and Classics in Knutsford who has looked after the car since the day I got it, for a check over, big service and an MoT. The service included air filters, oil, pollen filters and the usual other ancillary checks. The belts have all been changed in the last 12 months, as have all the cooling components and the spark plugs were done a couple of months before I bought the car in 2012. So a lot of the big-cost items were already covered making the bill slightly less painful than it could have been. Unfortunately that wasn’t all the work that was required on this visit.

    MoT. I think this is the first Ministry of Transport annual inspection that any of my Porsches has failed. Sport and Classics use an MoT station next to its unit so the news came in quickly that all was not well. Failures on the front brakes were to blame, cracking in both the discs and the pads were the issue. To be honest, I was a bit taken aback. I had always assumed that as long as the car stopped with a certain amount of pedal pressure and didn’t pull one way or the other, that a car would pass. I knew the front discs were cracked around the venting holes (a common issue on any tracked drilled discs) but never realised it would result in an MoT failure. I had no idea they even checked the condition of the pads. It was my plan to replace all the discs and pads in the spring before I started using the car in earnest again anyway, so the fact it needed doing wasn’t the end of the world. They were going to get done regardless so now or next year makes little difference. It would just have been nice to spread the cost out over a few months rather than get hit with it all in one go. Oh well.

    So as I write a new set of discs (I’ve done the front and rear even though it was just the fronts that were the issue) has just arrived from fvd. de in Germany and a set of Performance Friction PF08 pads have been dispatched so we can get the car back through the MoT before the end of the week. The reason for the hurry being that Sports and Classic are moving to a new location down the road (and even closer to my house) in a 3000sq ft unit with five ramps. Let’s hope it passes this time so I can get it back in my unit before the clocks change and the weather turns for the worse up here in the currently gloomy north west of England.
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