No sooner had I typed the words "no mechanical problems," than they came back to haunt me. Leaving the car park at the Goodwood Revival, our long term Caterham 7 started making a strange graunching noise from the rear axle.
Intermittent but worrying, we got Caterham to check it out. Turned out to be a failed wheel bearing. Apparently it's a fault they experienced only a couple of times before and are speaking to their supplier to try and find the cause.
In any case, a week later our 7 returned better than ever. While in their care, Caterham also had a chance to fix a couple of other things I’d noticed. The squeaks and rattles are now gone, the temperature gauge is behaving itself and the small amount of play in the steering has been tightened. Without asking them do to so, the guys also re-alligned the pedals; apparently we should have had a pedal box fitting when the car was delivered but it never happened, but they’re now much better and perfect for heel-and-toeing.
Finally the guys made a fix for the rather hot cabin. As our car was one of the first to have the new Sigma engine, the engineers were a little conservative about the amount of airflow needed to keep the engine cool, which meant very little of the incoming air made it down the transmission tunnel causing the heat build-up. With more testing now complete, new-built Sigma-engined 7s get a different front cowling which directs less air to the radiator, leaving more to cool the cabin - a mod that has now been retro-fitted to our car.
So far our experience has been fun but not exactly glitch-free. That said, every problem has been fixed quickly and with minimal fuss. Of course, we can’t tell if this is a truly typical experience (although we suspect so), but everyone we’ve dealt with, both at the factory and at Caterham South, couldn’t have been more accommodating, and other than the first service everything has been covered by the warranty.
Next up for 'GN07 RZM' is a trip to the Isle of Man; more on that soon.