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Hi and Welcome...Glad you posted here....before you visit that autowash facility. The 124 Spider is a tough, well behaved character with lots of spirit, but.....it will not tolerate abuse (nor should it), "The Brick" top end of engine unit requires lubricating on a regular basis by running the engine (see 124 Spider Basic ownership Rules...some of" thread and the paintwork is...how shall I put it..."Delicate". Some would say thin, rubbish, crap but it's just the new way so you have to be a bit careful in how you treat it, which brings me to..."Autoglym" products, Available in 45 COUNTRIES, USA since 2010. We all have our favorites of course like "Mer" (leaves a white powder residue) and some cheaper supermarket brands that may or may not work but with the 124 Spider paint "I would ONLY" use Quality stuff, follow the guidelines for application and enjoy the results. As you do not usually detail your car yourself maybe a reminder......warm plain water wash off the surface filth, warm soapy water gentle wash (I always wash/polish in one direction to avoid swirls in paintwork), proper fresh water rinse, then dry off before polish. Use those fancy micro cloth things rather than a soft rag and again one direct application and polish. NEVER in direct sunlight and don't attempt the whole car with application in one go as it will dry quickly and you will then have to apply some serious pressure to get it off. Autoglym (and others) do the whole range, soft top included and it stands out.
I use to do the "Car Show" circuits for many years with my MG's and Fords winning many prizes after taking advice from the old hands, who knew. The one area I just use soapy water on though is the alloys, tried the very expensive, highly recommended "Wonder Wheels" in my opinion Cr*p! But should you have any TAR problems... if they sell it in the USA..."GTECHNIQ W7" (Amazon). One of THE BEST products to buy, especially for our delicate 124 Spider, it works ! Leather care quarterly (depending on climate) keeps your leather supple (no cracking), products for rubber / plastic hoses and fittings.....all help your vehicles components look better and last longer and finally ( I know)...Under the Spider...I went under mine as soon as I got it home and was surprised to see large areas untreated with an underseal product, which should be done from new, certainly within the first year...old engine oil annually to fancy sealants, anything within reason rather than nothing and don't forget your glass as a quality product will help avoid scratching it........Cheers
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