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Nova Euro Cluster Conversion
DISCLAIMER: The information in these documents are a collection from experience (friends or myself), magazine articles, mailing lists and Internet web sites etc. So don't take these as 100% correct gospel, hence I don't take any responsibility for any of these guides.
     Difficulty Rating: 1/5 - Dead easy modification.
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Created: 17th April 2001
Updated: 15 Dec 2002
Revision 2

Click on any of the
pics for a large view.


Before...
Before...

..and after.
...and after.

Twin reverse with Astra fog lamps.
Twin reverse option with Astra fog lamps.

Off side Euro cluster with Nova Cluster.
Off side Euro cluster (left) with Nova cluster (right).

This is a step-by-step guide on fitting the Corsa A rear light cluster (Euro cluster) to a Nova so that it either has a) twin reverse (harder option) or b) twin fog lights (easier option). Either choice you only need one Euro cluster to do the job, but you may have to buy additional lights to make it UK road legal.

So what does it involve? We'll you'll need to remove some boot trim to get at the Vauxhall wire loom at the rear of the light clusters and cut some wires. You'll also need to feed some extra cable in to finish the job. Both options will be explained here in this guide. So just a brief outlook on each option so you'll know what's involved.

Option A - Twin Reverse:

The hardest option of the two, mainly because it requires you to put in a fog lamp at the rear, you'll need this to pass the MOT. The most obvious place is to mount it in the rear bumper, so some cutting is involved. Plus you'll need to feed some extra wires from the bumper to the light clusters. You'll need to buy the offside (drivers side) Euro cluster only, fit a fog lamp (Astra ones are most common) and do quite a bit of wiring to make it work. The before and after pictures show a Nova GTE modified to have twin reverse and a single fog lamp mounted in the rear bumper.

Option B - Twin Fog:

The easiest option. With this you just swap the nearside (passenger side) cluster with a Euro cluster. No extra lamps are required, it is road legal to have a car without a reverse light. Some small wiring work is involved.

So what about the MOT?

The UK MOT rules are a bit strange when you actually read them, but this is how it turns out when concerning this modification. Your car will NOT fail the MOT if it has NO reverse lamp. However, if there is one, and it doesn't work (i.e. blown bulb) then they MAY fail you for it. It is not actually part of the MOT test, it's up to the discretion of the MOT tester.

But you WILL NEED a working fog lamp at the rear of the car. This is the main reason why option B is the easiest to do, as no extra fitting is required. But I would prefer to let people know that I'm reversing, or there could be a few car parking nightmares ahead.

One other important point I should make, this guide was carried out on a 1989 Nova GTE, and Vauxhall sometimes changed the colours of wires on different models/years. So consult a Haynes book to find the right wires to cut (or you'll make a mistake like me - you'll find out later). Also the Nova light cluster on the left looks dark because they have been 'tinted' with black strips. Otherwise their the same brightness as the Euro parts.


PARTS Option A
PARTS Option B
COST
Crimmper Crimmper Euro Cluster (any side) £20
Socket Set (metric) Socket Set (metric) Astra Fog lamp (original vaux) £6.60
Various bullet plugs Various bullet plugs Wire 7/0.2 or 16/0.2 per meter 20p+
Various bullet sockets Various bullet sockets 20 bullet plugs or sockets £2
Offside Euro cluster Nearside Euro cluster Hand crimmper £6+
10 foot of wire (max) 5 foot of wire (max) You can import the Euro clusters if you wish (about £35), or you could go to the Offers Page and get either side for £20 inc P&P (this is what I did). The part number for the Astra fog lamps are 90243431 which also come with a fixing brace. You'll only need two size bullet plugs, mostly red and a few blue size ones.
Haynes book (very useful) Haynes book (very useful)
Wire cutters Wire cutters
Fog lamp(s) Another Fog bulb
Another Reverse bulb
Pad saw or Jig saw  

Option 1: Twin Reverse

Just before you start, make sure you note the following:

  • You need to have enough bullet plugs and sockets. I had 20 red plugs/sockets with 10 blue plugs/sockets. This was just the right amount as I had plenty left over.
  • Make sure you KNOW what colour/type wire to cut, otherwise you've got to do some repairing (like I did - D'OH).
  • You can never have enough wire, just make sure you've got amply supply to do the job.
  • When removing the Nova cluster (either side), try and retain the sponge that goes round it. Fit the new Euro cluster over this which should keep the gap even compared to the otherside.
  • With the way I used the bullet connectors, I can in the future put back the original cluster and plug up the wire loom as it was before. You don't have to follow the wire diagram that is shown, but it might be beneficial in the future (i.e. the Euro cluster gets damaged and you can plug back the original cluster).
  • Also you may have to get another matching bulb, this is because if you go for twin reverse, one of the bulbs is still a high wattage fog bulb, so it would appear that the Euro Cluster reverse side is VERY bright.
  • Remember for this mod you need to fix some fog lamp(s) somewhere, so be prepared to cut up your rear bumper.

OK, got all the above? Then follow the steps below (remember to click on the pics for a bigger view):


Step 1 Step 2 Step 3
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
First of all look at the circuit diagram above and take note of what to do. There are actually only 2 wires to cut and 3 new wires to add.

First is preparation, so make up the Y adapter as shown, just 2 wires and 3 bullet connectors. This will feed the reverse signal onto the Euro cluster.

Open up the little door in the boot to get at the back of the offside cluster. Remove the multi-plug by pulling it and pressing down on the clip.
Step 4 Step 5 Step 6
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view

Follow the circuit diagram and cut the Fog lamp wire (Black wire with Blue tracer). Connect a plug bullet at the multi-plug end and a socket bullet at the GM loom end.

Now go to the nearside cluster and pull off the multi-plug. You need to locate the Reverse wire, which is White/Black. But there are 2 of them! Find the White wire with Black tracer. Cut the reverse wire and put a plug at the multi-plug end and a socket on the GM loom end. Now connect the Y adapter to the bullet plugs. Note: the other bullet plugs is were I cocked up, I cut the wrong wire. Opps!
Step 7 Step 8 Step 9
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
With the Y adapter fitted, cut some wire which feeds from the Y adapter (blue socket), along the bottom of the boot and into the offside cluster area. This is the reverse feed wire, just follow the circuit diagram. With the nearside complete, go back to the offside cluster and remove the bulb holder by pulling it off. Then remove the Nova cluster (3 bolts) and swap it for the Euro cluster. Try and retain the sponge on the Nova cluster. With the Euro cluster in place, push back the bulb holder on. Refit the multi-plug and connect the reverse feed wire onto the plug bullet (now making the fog bulb a reverse lamp). Now cut another wire for the fog(s) and connect it to the socket bullet.
Step 10 Step 11 Step 12
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Feed the fog lamp wire from the offside cluster through the same grommet used by the number plate light (tight fit). Depending if two fog lamps connected, you may have to 'piggy back' a 2nd wire to the 2nd fog lamp. With my particular fog lamp, I didn't have the correct plug that fit's for it. So I used some small bullet spades to fit on the terminals. This is a trial and error method to see what fits. With all the wires and the lamps in place, put everything back together. Now for the big test, switch on the lights, fog and put it into reverse and stand back to see what happens. Note: that you need to replace the fog bulb with a reverse one (Euro cluster end).

Not finished just yet.....

Once you've done the above steps, you've just converted your Nova to have twin reverse lamps and have fog lights. You should ideally change the offside fog bulb (where the Euro cluster is now) with a lower wattage reverse lamp bulb. This is because is still has the fog bulb in a reverse lamp cluster. So when you switch on the reverse, the offside fog looks very bright. Remember that both reverse lights might look dull anyway because there are two bulbs in series now. In otherwords where before there used to a 12v drop across the one bulb, there is now only a 6v drop across both bulbs. So naturally they will not appear so bright. But other than that, job well done :)


Option 2: Twin Fog

Just before you start, make sure you note the following:

  • You need to have enough bullet plugs and sockets. I had 20 red plugs/sockets with 10 blue plugs/sockets. This was just the right amount as I had plenty left over.
  • You can never have enough wire, just make sure you've got amply supply to do the job.
  • When removing the Nova cluster (either side), try and retain the sponge that goes round it. Fit the new Euro cluster over this which should keep the gap even compared to the otherside.
  • With the way I used the bullet connectors, I can in the future put back the original cluster and plug up the wire loom as it was before. You don't have to follow the wire diagram that is shown, but it might be beneficial in the future (i.e. the Euro cluster gets damaged and you can plug back the original cluster).
  • Also you may have to get another matching bulb, this is because if you go for twin fog, one of the bulbs is still a low wattage reverse bulb, so it would appear that the Euro Cluster fog side is VERY dull.

OK, got all the above? Then follow the steps below (remember to click on the pics for a bigger view):


Step 1 Step 2 Step 3
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
First of all look at the circuit diagram above and take note of what to do. There are actually only 2 wires to cut and 1 new wire to add.

First is preparation, so make up the Y adapter as shown, just 2 wires and 3 bullet connectors. This will feed the fog signal onto the Euro cluster.

Open up the little door in the boot to get at the back of the offside cluster. Remove the multi-plug by pulling it and pressing down on the clip.
Step 4 Step 5 Step 6
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view

Follow the circuit diagram and cut the fog lamp wire (Black wire with Blue tracer). Connect a plug bullet at the multi-plug end and a socket bullet at the GM loom end.

Now connect the Y adapter to the bullet plugs. This will feed the Fog signal to the Euro cluster's fog light bulb.

With the Y adapter fitted, cut some wire which feeds from the Y adapter (blue socket), along the bottom of the boot and into the nearside cluster.
Step 7 Step 8 Step 9
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Click for a bigger view
Now go to the nearside cluster and pull off the multi-plug. You need to locate the Reverse wire, which is White/Black. But there are 2 of them! Find the White wire with Black tracer. Fit a socket to the GM loom half and a plug to the multi-plug end. The reverse signal from the GM Loom is no longer used. Remove the bulb holder by pulling it off. Then remove the Nova cluster (3 bolts) and swap it for the Euro cluster. Try and retain the sponge on the Nova cluster. With the Euro cluster in place, push back the bulb holder on. Refit the multi-plug and connect the fog feed wire onto the plug bullet (now making the reverse bulb a fog lamp). Just follow the circuit diagram. AND THAT'S IT!

Not finished just yet.....

Once you've done the above steps, you've just converted your Nova to have twin fog lamps, but no reverse. You should ideally change the nearside reversing bulb (where the Euro cluster is now) with a higher wattage fog lamp bulb. This is because is still has the normal bulb in a fog lamp cluster. So when you switch on the fogs, the nearside fog looks very dull. Remember that both fogs might look dull anyway because there are two bulbs in series now. In otherwords where before there used to a 12v drop across the one bulb, there is now only a 6v drop across both bulbs. So naturally they will not appear so bright. But other than that, job well done :)


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