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Club XM Forum > XM General Issues
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SamWise1972
Ok, so, I do quite a lot of mileage, and I need a big, and cheap car. At the moment, I'm driving a Toyota Estima, which just uses too much fuel. As a kid, I drooled over DS's, GS's and CX's, and about 8 years ago, I had a BX.

I loved my BX, it was comfortable, economical, and sooo cool. The only trouble was, the push-fit unions on the hydraulics kept failing. So, now, I'm a part time classic car journalist, writing for Practical Classics, I've got a nice Triumph Herald convertible, and I want a big car which will use less fuel. The XM reportedly will do 45 mpg or so in diesel form, and I love Citroens.

On the one hand, I've read lots of stuff that suggests a handy amateur mechanic can do pretty much everything on an XM no problem. On the other hand, someone I know who is a better mechanic than me, and has had several, says he had to work on his every weekend to keep them going, and that electrics which cost a fortune to fix kept failing. Who's right? If I spend £1000 or less on a 2.1 diesel estate, do I have any chance of getting a reliable car? My other option is a Daihatsu HiJet (odd alternate, I know), but I just know that for a man of 6'3, the XM will be way more comfortable. I don't mind spending the odd weekend under the bonnet, but if I can't get into it in the morning, and be reasonably confident that I can do 400 miles in the day, it just won't let me do my job! Help me out here - am I kidding myself?
citroenxm
Welcome to our neighbour hood!

Spend a bit of time having a look around on here, you'll learn quite a bit.

The electric problems are no worse then any other car, they have just been blown out of proportion..

The clue to look for is inside the front wings if you go to view a car.. The earthing points which cause the biggest problem were plug in points on early cars up to about late 1992 (k) reg

Later cars have bolted ring terminals directly to the wings and are generally better.

Eira of car is down to perferance.. There are many on here that like either a S1 / 1.5 and S2 cars, all cars have pros and cons for them..

If your a classic involment it would have to be a S1.5 car, as they were the original car, look better, better rear spoiler, better dash (sorry peterN, xmexec) its personal choice, more reliable Dot matrix warning display, although S2's can be repaired, but S1's will ALWAYS be in working order..

I have found the hydraulics to be more reliable then BX's, I use a 1993 K reg V6, had it 3 years, done 25000 miles and not had an hydraulic problem..

DERVs are the most reliable, V6's possibly most fun with the 2.o turbo close behind, but the S1 24v V6 is the ultimate if you can find one.

DIY is easy, I read Practical Classic quite often, and what I see in there, doesn't seem too far different to what an XM needs..

I guess there will be more comments other then mine, but thats a starter for you..

Rgds
citroenxm

PS: When will your Magazine consider the first generation XM's a classic? Surley they must be nearly there by now?? biggrin.gif biggrin.gif
onthecut
Hi Sam.

Mine, including the current one all do anything between 20k - 40k miles in a year and have been eminently reliable and frugal tools of work; there was nothing then and there is nothing still to compare to the estate version. That said, there are pitfalls -- best avoided in the purchase process. Top of the list - probably - is head gasket trouble. Don't be misled by bland comments that they only want the water topping up once a week or similar. If they are right, they don't use any water and don't require topping up. Watch out for fluid sitting in the expansion bottle overflow pipe. or signs of it blowing out anywhere around there. Muddy looking coolant, or coolant with no -- or very weak -- antifreeze are not good signs. Take the prospective buy for as long and fast a run as you can. Typical running temp is around the 90 deg. mark, although my 2.5s have all pushed toward 100 if you are caning them uphill or with a heavy load. Fuel wise, my 2.5 does a genuine 40, according to the trip computer and you should see at least that out of a 2.1.
Try and buy from an XM enthusiast --- overwhelmingly I've found fellow owners to be pretty honest, upfront and knowledgeable about the cars. Casual owners or traders tend not to have the specialist knowledge to offer a genuine opinion on the state of the car. I'm sure you'll get a sackload of response to your post, so I'll shuffle off and make way for someone else !

Mike.
Ken newbold
Hello again Sam.

You've seen my XM and now you want one. biggrin.gif

You didn't see my mates XM though, it's a S2 hatch on M plate, he paid about £300 for it 15months ago. Has covered over 50,000 miles in it, he's amazed by the economy and the only electrical problem it's had it the central locking which plays up every now and then.
It could now do with a new clutch as he's towed a 4 wheels car transporter and also a caravan for many miles. But he's no intention of letting it go.
robertmnorton
Hi Sam, just read through the many and varied posts on this sight and you may decide "Oh b*****r that!". Don't be put off, none of us would be parted from that quirky memorable experience that IS the XM. I picked up my first one in '96 a Mk 1 2.1 sed manual, did the head gasket on this one ,other than that, an aircon condenser,rear suspension arm bushes, window winder, (did all work myself )and this car took me to work all over europe for the next 7 years with nothing but standard service. Collected 2nd one in 2003, a mk 2 2.1 auto exclusive, apart from service items, only FDV due external leakage, and intermittant cruise control and a failed rear ABS sensor, it took up the reigns on the continental trips due to the benefits of cruise.Picked my 3rd 2006 (which saw the sad departure of Mk1, 3 is too many to keep on the road). This is also a 2.1 auto which quickly developed auto box problems and i had rebuilt.Apart from this and again a CC problem (which was sorted in 10 mins as a result of experience with the other car) both cars deliver whenever asked and i would not trade them for anything else! BUT beware! Service history with these cars is EVERYTHING! Check it carefully. The best indicator by far is to sample all fluids for clarity, ESPECIALLY autobox, any cloudiness or darkened colouring indicates neglected services, and you WILL pay the price!GOOD LUCK, go and buy one!
citroenxm
Robert

Dont think his Sir will be put off with work, he is involved with Classic cars.. They always need DIY work.. biggrin.gif tongue.gif

Rgds
citroenxm
demag
Hi Sam,

Welcome to the club. Sorry to hear about the Triumph Herald, don't worry you'll soon get over it when you buy your first Xm. rolleyes.gif

Xm's are lovely cars although like any other car they can have their foibles. wacko.gif If you're going to do your own maintenance you need a big (ish) area to work in.

Take your time and get the right one for you. Buy with your head not your heart and you should be ok.

I average 31-32mpg around town with mine (slight binding front brake) and have done 48mpg on a trip to Wales. That is a lot for such a big car. And now it's legal to run on cooking oil my running costs have dropped dramatically! laugh.gif
aengus-xmv6
I've run XM's since 1991 and was an IT Consultant for one of the main hardware vendors, so did a lot of mileage.

First one I had from 6 months and put 135K miles on it by the time it passed on.
Next was a 2.0 auto, but I never liked the auto, ran it for around 6k miles and sold it.

Current V6 has 103K miles now, bought at 50K, and apart from 2007, has been a pretty trouble free 16 years. The past set of problems have all been down to poor work by one or other garage resulting in a couple of recoveries and me re-doing the same work to correct.

Would I recommend - yes, if you get a good one, they just keep going, but you could say that of any s/h car. you won't know if it's a bag of bolts until you've run it for a while, so check well before you buy.

regards
Dave
SamWise1972
QUOTE (Ken newbold @ Jan 9 2008, 21:29 PM)
Hello again Sam.

You've seen my XM and now you want one. biggrin.gif

You didn't see my mates XM though, it's a S2 hatch on M plate, he paid about £300 for it 15months ago. Has covered over 50,000 miles in it, he's amazed by the economy and the only electrical problem it's had it the central locking which plays up every now and then.
It could now do with a new clutch as he's towed a 4 wheels car transporter and also a caravan for many miles. But he's no intention of letting it go.

Slightly confused by this? I haven't looked, in the metal, at anyone's XM yet, so maybe you're confusing me with someone else?

This is all great stuff, anyhow, and I'm encouraged, not to say greatly tempted. I'm now thinking that if the LPG converted HiJet I'm watching goes over my limit (50p a litre is too cheap to ignore) then an XM estate will be the dream ticket.....
SamWise1972
Ok, another question then. Is it realistic to hope for a decent car at £800, and does anyone know of a good one for sale? I'm falling too deeply in love with the idea of leather armchairs of seats to turn back, unless this particular vehicle comes through on Friday.
SamWise1972
QUOTE (citroenxm @ Jan 9 2008, 21:57 PM)
Robert

Dont think his Sir will be put off with work, he is involved with Classic cars.. They always need DIY work.. biggrin.gif tongue.gif

Rgds
citroenxm

Don't be fooled! It's the Herald experience which is making me lary of ending up with something that won't start in the mornings! As far as when will PC feature them - if I buy one, it'll start turning up in Staff Car Sagas at least. They've taken on new staff writers, so my old column (Why We Love....) has been taken in house - for now at least, Staff Car Sagas is the only opening for me to write for them!
citroenxm
I'll consider selling you my DERV with leather then ....


if I can tempt you!

Rgds
citroenxm
beachcomber
Hi Sam,
I've had Citroens all my driving life [ 46 years ] and from CX's onwards NEVER had a major [ ie stop on the side of the road ] problem or breakdown. Come to that my DS's never gave me any problems either.

Since switching to XM's in '92 - again no problems.

Friends [ non Citroen owners ] have often said to me "Oh what about the price of spares". my anwer has always been - "I wouldn't know about that - I've never needed any".

Of course I've replaced consumables, pads, spheres, exhausts, etc.,but I've always used spurious and NEVER had any problems.

The only malady I ever had with an XM was my 2.1 TD auto Estate with 205K miles that I misread the trans oil dipstick [ didn't have my glasses on ] which allowed the trans fluid to run low when I towed 2.5 tons of trailer and car to the South of Germany at warp factor 3 and fried the box - my fault not the car.

My latest XM is another Estate - this time a 2.0ltr Turbo petrol / auto - and again looks set to go on to starship mileage without problems.

As others have said - yes there are the odd quirks and annoyances - like sunroof problems / leaks, leaks from the aerial, odd electric malfunctions, but essentially they are high mileage / low maintenance cars.

Japanese? HMMMM?? my experience of Japanese has always been - nice cars / mpv's with all the toys and generally well made but spares prices are an absolute joke and mostly no spurious parts available.

My Wife was recently quoted £48 for ONE spark plug lead for her Supra ! Needless to say we went to our local motorfactors and bought a complete [ 7 leads ] high performance set for £25.00! My Wife's Scooby Estate is fun to drive [ 2.5 Quadcam ], but still isn't a patch on the XM for comfort and overall practicality.

Don't be put off by "cheap" priced cars - young [ relative ] people can't afford the insurance and as a "quirky" car, it's often a buyers market.

My current car was 1 owner example with 75 K miles and full history, part exchanged back to the Citroen dealer that sold it, but the car was too old for them to retail so I picked it up for the bargain basement price of £600. It was in mint unmarked condition and came with 10 months MOT - that was 3 years ago.

There was an N reg 2 ltr Turbo petrol estate for sale just before Christmas with LPG conversion that went for £750!!!.

Just look around, cars are even cheaper than estates - next to my Renault Alpine GTA Turbo, the XM has to be one of the most undervalued cars on the market.

£800 will buy you an absolute gem!

Beachcomber
Ken newbold
QUOTE (SamWise1972 @ Jan 10 2008, 09:14 AM)
QUOTE (Ken newbold @ Jan 9 2008, 21:29 PM)
Hello again Sam.

You've seen my XM and now you want one. biggrin.gif

You didn't see my mates XM though, it's a S2 hatch on M plate, he paid about £300 for it 15months ago. Has covered over 50,000 miles in it, he's amazed by the economy and the only electrical problem it's had it the central locking which plays up every now and then.
It could now do with a new clutch as he's towed a 4 wheels car transporter and also a caravan for many miles.  But he's no intention of letting it go.

Slightly confused by this? I haven't looked, in the metal, at anyone's XM yet, so maybe you're confusing me with someone else?

This is all great stuff, anyhow, and I'm encouraged, not to say greatly tempted. I'm now thinking that if the LPG converted HiJet I'm watching goes over my limit (50p a litre is too cheap to ignore) then an XM estate will be the dream ticket.....

Didn't you cal here the other week to collect some seats for a BX? unsure.gif
SamWise1972
Nope! I haven't had a BX in 7 years! Some confusion has definitely crept in..... wink.gif

You guys are definitely selling me on an XM. I've even had an offer of one, but it's a hatch rather than an estate. How much load space do you lose with a hatch over an estate?
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