KXC539H is an Arden Green Federal 2000TC (85904695F) which was built, probably, just before the traditional Christmas break in 1969. Her built date is January 5, 1970 and was registered to Rover itself on the 12th on January 1970. Having gone through the Personal Export Department, as the first owner wanted the car delivered in the UK for a tour of the UK and Europe whilst he was attending college in London, it not clear despatch until the 28th, which was probably when the car delivered to him either at the Personal Export Department facility in Solihull, or at Devonshire house, in Picadilly, London. Rover had an office there where besides regular board meetings, some owners could pick their car up. Consequently, the owner toured the UK and Europe before he shipped the car to Montreal on the Empress of Canada. The car was then further transported to Calgary where the owner now resided.
The interesting thing about this particular is that all the paperwork survives and therefore gives the complete registration history of the car. The registration traces back to both to the VRO files, where Roy’s car is also entered, with an Export marker. The Purchase Tax that the owner did not have to pay probably paid for his whole tour of Europe, and therefore made getting the car from the factory always a nice option, which quite a few people used.
From information in the paperwork included with the car, it appears the car was driven until 1979. In 1984, the owner’s son got the car running again and some new sheet metal was purchased to spruce the car up.
The restoration stopped abruptly in 1987 when the head was removed. The head was apparently ported and new valve guides were installed, but then the head was never reinstalled.
When purchased in 2008, KXC 539H had been sitting for 21 years. Most of the original Arden Green paint remained and the car wore new front wings and a new front valance in factory epoxy. The original rear wings had been replaced with second hand wings, one white and the other a white fender that was sprayed with red primer. The owner said the car had always been stored in a garage and the overall condition of the car would prove that to be plausible.
The interior was in very good shape. The seats are covered in vinyl with basket weave inserts and the carpets had minor wear at the sills. The backs of the rear seats and the parcel shelf had dried out and split. The engine was rebuilt and the brake system completely overhauled in the summer and fall of 2009, by The Sportscar Centre in Edmonton Alberta. The engine was bored to accept 2200 pistons to run better on modern, low-octane fuel.
Spring of 2010 saw the car getting its inspection and became a rolling restoration project. I have rebuilt the fuel tap twice, (ALWAYS get the viton gaskets), have had new U-joints installed at the drive shafts, rebuilt the fuel pump, replaced the speedometer angle drive, replaced the instrument panel lighting rheostat and bulbs, removed the interior, rust converted and painted the interior floor. Rusty metal on the underside of the sills and left rear wheel well has been cut out and repaired.
The underside, wheel wells, front cross member and beneath the rear valance have been checked for rust, wire wheeled and coated with rust preventer before being coated with zinc primer, enamel paint and new underseal. The boot got similar treatment, but was topcoated in bedliner for a durable finish.
A Kienzle clock with an external thermal fuse has been installed. Upholstery repairs have been done to the driver’s seat, parcel shelf and tops of the rear seats. The doorcards, shin bins and interior vinyl trim has been re-colored with vinyl dye.
The tires were replaced with new Pirelli P5’s in a 175/70 R14 size, as original size tires were not available in Canada. A complete re-spray was done in 2013, and all new front and rear suspension bushings, springs and dampers were installed in 2014.
Currently, she's tucked away for winter, but when the Canadian winter finally lifts some time in April, she's released into the wildlands of Northern Alberta, in the beautiful rolling landscape of the Swan Hills and Assiniboine Park. The car attends the annual All British Field Meet in the River Valley in Edmonton, where we'll see her again this year!