John Dragon Man's Citroen BX Diesel Estate


Well here I am, now an owner of a BX Diesel Estate in Sliver!

so yesterday (the 20th of June 16) i took a trip down to London with a car transporter and picked up this nice little... (umm.. a little more larger than i am use to) estate car!

i am pretty happy with it, the overall cost was £400 for the car and around £350 to get it delivered here to Derby (yes i know i could have got it cheaper now :x ).

bodywork wise the car is a little "used". given what i have seen of London (first time i have been!) i think the car survived well!

the engine is dead. the bottom end may be savable but i think i am going to go down the complete engine swap fix route. i am not sure if it may have damaged anything else bar the head. so that said i am now looking for a low miles XUD engine. be it a 1.7 or 1.9 (ill worry about that camshaft pump pulley further down the line)

the hydraulics are untested. the spheres are dated 2001 so are 15 years old they they need changing but are near the bottom on my list of things to change for obvious reasons. i will try and test the hydraulics by spinning the pump using an electric motor. being as it is cam driven it does not turn very quick even with the pulley ratio. maybe even a battery drill could do it.

the LHM fluid is more of a cloudy yellow/cream colour, i have read that it should be green. so i will change that when the engine is in and connected up.

who wants to see some pictures?

so these are the pictures that the seller sent me:

and these are from yesterday now i have the car at work:

a slight bit of rust.. but nothing i cant fix..

and now the really bad stuff...

ouch... smashy smashy

i will also be making online video logs. and here is the first:

see you in the next update!

this car needs to be clean and tidy.. i want it to be as nice as i can make it. no fallout mods.. well maybe the 1.9 engine over the 1.7.. but that is because its a heavy car in a modern pocket rocket world.

i STILL dont know how to go about fixing the engine.. should i replace the whole engine with the 1.9 XUD unit or just get a new cylinder head for the 1.7 XUD thats in it now? its so hard.. i cant decide.

the car is up now. i lifted the front up with the forklift at work and have it sat up on some old tyres. dont worry its safe!

really dont know what way to go about this.

i also want to replace as much of the original steel piping as possible. i have popped a few hydraulic lines just with the stress of jacking it up! well forking it up... i made sure i was not near any too when i did it! guess they have just corroded that much.

i really cant believe how rust free this car is.. just that one bit on the back pass door arch and one of the boot brackets. its really good!
still i want to get it undersealed at some point but i need to focus on the engine.

if only i could get my hands on a low miles 1.9 TD XUD unit.. sigh...
Considered perhaps dropping a more modern engine in you could get from the yard... much faffing to make work but possibly result in an epic cruising barge.. And I know you like a good tinker
agreed. i know i can drive the hydraulics via electric motor like the electric power steering pumps on the saxo's.

a nice modern common rail 2.0L HDI engine would be nice but then its getting it to fit the gearbox.. or fit drive shafts. i can make engine mounts easy enough.

you seen how many pipes are on these cars.. man i have some replacing to do!
Nice shall watch with interest. How you finding parts availability? Old Citroen's are very cool but I seem to recall PSA only support their cars with spares for 10 years so even things for the later Xantia are hard to come by.
hmm well so far i have only needed a replacement engine and some new pipework!

trying to get a 1.9 XUD engine is almost impossible though. i have rang up everywhere in derby, notts and lecs but no breakers have the 1905cc XUD engine. :(

ill just drop the engine and leave it for now i think. i can work on replacing the pipes.
Top Buyage Sir!

Head over to Auto****e.com plenty of knowlege of old citroens on there (when the sites working).

I presume you will be running it on used veg oil?
hmm i may.. i am looking at getting a Peugeot 406 as the early ones came with the XUD engine. theres a few around here that are mot fail cars with under 100k on the clock and they are fetching only £100 to £150 they are worth that for the engine alone! the one i have my eye on has aircon and everything... almost seems a shame to kill the car for its engine :/

the car is also Here on the BX forum.
the BX already has aircon! but it is an older R12 system. i am kinda hoping that the pump from the newer engine connect strait up to the older pipes. if not i still have the older compressor that.. lets face it could do with a recon. i bet the shaft seals are nothing!

i will have to source a replacement cam shaft as pretty much every other XUD engine does not have the pulley to drive the hydraulic pump. so i will be looking for a cam shaft from out of a 1.9 none turboed BX. as the lobes are much higher than any of the other cams. should allow better airflow into the cylinder.
Last edited:
Wow, that's a rare beast! I can't actually remember the last time I saw a BX! Will definitely follow this with interest. :)
... so i will be looking for a cam shaft from out of a 1.9 none turboed BX. as the lobes are much higher than any of the other cams. should allow better airflow into the cylinder.

Be careful with this idea. The turbo has the advantage of the air being pushed in, so the valve lift is different to match. The non-turbo cam might cause the air/fuel charge to be pushed right through into the exhaust, so wasting fuel and giving less power. With the risk of the fuel burning in the exhaust.

If you can, find the valve overlap figures to compare.
well i have the engine out now. a little bit of damage was done but oh well.. sadly a pipe was left on the engine and has snapped near the heater matrix inside the car. i will figure out what i am going to do with it later on.

here is some pictures and a video!
the video was before the engine came out.

i would not want to kick start it..
Been a while since I've seen those ominous green spheres in an engine bay, reminds me of our old Xantia, shame the new Citroens aren't anything like the old ones :(
Good luck with the project (y)
Ok.. so that is a replacement engine bought.. (from out of a Fiat Ulysses!) i will need to install a BX's cam shaft to it as it has a pulley on the end of it which drives the hydraulic pump via a belt. the engine already has the Bosch injector pump and injectors so i "could" tune it if i wanted. i also want to swap my old turbo over to this engine.. and all the manifolds. the new engine does not support the top mount intercooler... heh i could i guess get a front mount intercooler.. hehehe for now, i will stick with it as normal.
(if you want to go insane, you can stick HDI engine con rods into the XUD9. when you do that, you can run higher boost pressures and actually get the thing pushing an insane 200bhp! From a indirect injected diesel!!!)

other things i have bought for it are:

all enngine mounts
clutch kit (pressure plate, friction plate and thrust bearing)
inner cv boots (turned out to be cheap multifit ones not as pictured)
ball joint dust covers (enough to redo all of the ones on the car)
Power Steering Rack Boot Gaiter (both sides)
brake pads and discs for front and rear
brand new calipers (both sides, got them really cheap! £8 for one, £24 for the other)
aircon dryer (lol 26 years old!)
rear wheel bearing kit (didnt need it but it was damn cheap at £7!)
CV boot (genuine) (only one, need another.. or 3)
sump gasket
cam/rocker cover gasket
front brake hoses (ABS)
heater matrix (didnt need it but brand new at £4 i could not say no)
cam belt kit (Cam belt, tetioner, idler pulley, and waterpump)

including the car and transport up to Derby this has cost so far: £1260.15

and i have not got onto replacing hydraulic pipes at £40 or more a go. it has loads that need replacing.

i also need to buy oils, "LHM" fluid (for the hydraulic system) and coolant. think i will engine flush the system too. try and free up any slightly blocked oil lines..

bit of bad news though, i think the fuel tank is cracked. i have been getting diesel from scrap cars and sticking it in the BX's tank. ready for when i get the engine in.
sadly it has got to a point where diesel goes in to the filler.. but out through somewhere onto the floor. i dont know if the tank is cracked of if yet another pipe has burst.. only time will tell i guess.

the car keeps filling up with new parts.. but ive not done anything to it yet. hence there being a lack in pictures or a video... soon though maybe next week i will have something.
good stuff john, looking foward to the work starting on this one...

how does the bx cam profile compare to the donor cars cam, you got the figures at all?