Date Added: Wednesday 16 July, 2003
I chose the "cleaner look" grill without cut-outs, and the instructions for removing the tie-down hooks seemed simple enough. Wrong!
My car is a late 2002 1.8i Sport, and it took me over 3 hours to remove the 6 bolts holding the hooks in place using an extensive took kit and every trick that 40 years engineering experience has taught me.
Reasons - there is absolutely no room to work because of all the plastic struts and metal pipes in front of the radiator on this model, and the bolts are torqued down very tight. To undo the bolts you need a complete range of cranked and uncranked long ring spanners (sockets will not work, even with long extensions) and extra-length very strong open ended spanners with at least two diffent offset angles. Plus a thick skin and endless patience, as the bolts are long and do not loosen enough to turn by hand, and need the spanner repositioned every 1/12 of a turn.
Once the hooks are off, the grill fits easily but you need to cut back the plastic surround to give about 5mm clearance from the mounting slots, to let the bolts penetrate sufficiently to catch the threads.
My advice - DEFINITELY leave the hooks in place and go for the grill with cut-outs - I would rate that version 4.5 out of 5.
Rating: [1 of 5 Stars!]