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Ls400 Rear Subframe Mot Fail

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Hey I'm new to this forum my names Philip

This is my first post I purchased a 1996 ls400 with 228000 miles on the clock. It was £450 with a expensive private plate on it so I thought it was a steal, I purchased it off eBay so I didn't view it before I bought it I knew it had no MOT but it did have tax, I drove it home and all felt fine i was really impressed at how refined it is compared to my previous car a golf mk4, I got home and looked up the MOT history on the Internet and to my despair the previous owner had tried to MOT it and it had failed on a list of items one of which was Rear subframe corroded and seriously weakened, I have been looking around and can't find a second hand one for sale anywhere I was wondering if anybody knows if it's repairable instead?

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Hi Philip,

Welcome to the LOC. I have had an MOT advisory about 3 years ago on my 1998 Mk 4 for surface corrosion to the rear subframe. However, the subframe is a pretty robust item, and in my case the corrosion was made to look far worse by old underseal and paint peeling off it. I have subsequently jacked up the back end, pressure washed and scraped the flaking underseal off, and then given the entire subframe a liberal brushing with old sump oil, which has transformed the old beast.

I am not aware of anybody having changed a rear subframe through corrosion, although I stand ready to be corrected on this. It may well be that the MOT tester concerned was a bit over-zealous with his failure certificate. I can only advise that you have a good look yourself to see if the corrosion is serious or merely surface and cosmetic. The brake pipes run above the top of the subframe, and they are certainly prone to corrosion after 10 or 12 years, so these may be now past their best. I can't help but feel that if the drive home was good, with no feeling of excessive wander or rear wheel steering, then the back end may not be as bad as it first appears. If you do need a subframe, then Maurice (Benfur) on this forum will most like be able to help you out as he breaks LS400s for a living - he is a very helpful chap.



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