Introducing Xena



DSC03555Xena, a 1968 122S was bought in Auckland, NZ specifically to be used on the classic car Peking to Paris marathon rally in 2016.  Since deciding to do that rally Jo and Heather have also entered the Road to Mandalay rally.  Xena, named after our beloved warrior princess, was bought in November 2013 and is having considerable work done on her by Steve Hawes, who has prepared cars for the London to Sydney marathon and safari rallies in Africa.

Xena was bought in November 2013.  She was towed to Steve’s garage in February and work began in earnest.  What we didn’t realise was that Xena was an illegal immigrant.  When the paperwork was being done it surfaced that she had no NZ identity and this had to all be sorted out.

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  • New sump  and steering guards were fitted.
  • New brake pads
  • Plans drawn up to move the fuel tank to a less dangerous place
  • Personalised plates ‘xena68’ were purchased
  • The starter motor was rebuilt
  • Engine bay was striped and  Xena was off to the painters for a new coat of paint
  • Old repair dealt with on  the passenger door
  • Surface rust on right front guard removed
  • Rust treatment on all doors


  • Xena painted ‘all black’
  • New VIN (vehicle identity) number
  • a new limited slip differential unit was imported from Sweden
  • The new fuel tank, brake linings and fittings were installed
  • Re-route the brake lines and fuel lines inside the car for greater protection


Axles had badly damaged splines and needed to be replaced

brake and fuel lines under the car very exposed

  • New brake hoses
  • new alternator
  • New fan belt
  • New distributor
  • New harnesses and standard seat belts
  • New wheel bearings
  • Low Volume Vehicle Certificate
  • Silver Fern decals for the sides of the car
  • Xena certificated and warranted







About Val

Val was owned by Marc, who had her for only 6 months and did only 21 miles in her.  Before that she was owned by Robbie.  Val was originally brought to NZ from Britain.

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No big work will done on Val as she is intended for less strenuous car club rallies once she gets to Australia

7 Responses to About

  1. Gordon Grose says:

    As the owner of “Val” previous to Rob I thought I’d add a bit. I bought the car via Trademe from Napier while in Texas on holiday! Picked it up on my return and drove down to Lyttelton experiencing several problems en route. Most serious of these was Minilite wheels with an incorrect offset, hence the steel wheels fitted in the photos. The tyres had rubbed badly on the inner rear arches under load and cornering. The brakes were appalling but this turned out to be a simple matter of bleeding them properly.
    The story I was told was that the car had been in storage for many years in the UK, hence the lack of rust and low mileage.
    It has since been replaced by a 2 door 1968 Amazon due to withdrawal symptoms………

    Gordon Grose

    • teamxena says:

      Great to hear more history about Val. She’s a great little car. We are concentrating on Xens at present – preparing for the Targa South Island tour. We will be in Christchurch Lxbour weekend at the Quest apartments if you wanted to see Xena

  2. Loris Mariotto says:

    I love both cars . good luck with Zena. have you read Border Crossing by Rosie Thomas, the story of Rosie Thomas doing the 1997 Peking to Paris in a 1968 Volvo Amazon. I also love Val as I have a 1961 122s the same colour. If you are in Sydney I might see you around one day.
    Best of luck. Loris

  3. Gordon Grose says:

    I presently live at the end of one of the stages in Pleasant Point so I shall probably see you down there, but it would be nice to see Xena close up as I was thinking of buying her myself and spoke at length to the previous owner and bought parts from him for my car. Small world……

  4. Carolyn Anderson says:

    Hi Heather & Jo
    What a great web site. You have been busy with rallying and buying Gabrielle since your return from “The Road to Mandalay”. She looks a nice car.We really enjoyed our time with you and getting to know and Zena.It was a great adventure it ended so quickly we didn’t even get your email address so we can keep in touch. Mine is carolyn_modela.tparts@xtra.co.nz. Todd down south at the moment on a Model A Rally and Roger off to China next week so we are very busy.
    Enjoy your long weekend
    Carolyn & Roger (Car No 5)

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