Its been a very long time, but I actually worked on a Vitara last week to change a clutch for a mate!
(Ben off here)
All I can say is, I thoroughly enjoyed it!
So the symptoms were a notchy gear change, impossible to get into reverse with the engine running and clutch slip under load in higher gears. Pretty much text book clutch failure, except the clutch cables are a renowned failure point on the commercial so this was changed first just as it was the cheaper option.
The vehicle in question
She was promptly pulled into the garage and onto axle stands. This is what I miss after playing with E30 BMW's, it feels like you can walk under a lifted truck and there is so much room to access everything with a body lift. I had the gearbox out in an hour and a half, on my own!
It looks like its still on the floor, but that's with axle stands at full height under the chassis.
What surprised me the most is how small the clutch was! its a 200mm friction plate, the same size as the 8v petrol. The flywheel is a heavy old beast and is unique to the commercial, the friction plate sits recessed into the flywheel and the pressure plate sits flush.
A few shots of the old clutch
Aaron Broome of ADB engineering and user BROOEM on here, kindly refaced the flywheel for me with a light skim on his lathe. Always good practice to have this done as it removes hard spots and deposits from the face of the flywheel ready for the new friction material to bed in to.
Now I had been concerned about finding a clutch for such a rare turd, but I knew who id be trying first. Needless to say they came through for me again. Id used Calder Clutch a few times in the past after tirelessly dealing with slipping clutches on the TDI beast. They supply remanufactured clutches that I have found to be better than original due to the organic compound they use being very grippy.
Unfortunately they didn't have a "reman" in stock, but they could supply me with a new clutch for a very competitive price.
And here it is all bolted up
Surprisingly there are no locating dowels on the flywheel, the bolts themselves are used to locate which is a bit unusual. A dab of Loctite on all the bolts should stop the diesel motor rattling them out, and it all went together without a hitch! I even managed to lift the gearbox in on my own amazingly.
After a quick test drive and everything working as it should, the truck was taken back to Ben.
I can feel a little flame beginning to rekindle
Anything to do with the Vitara Series
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