Lighting upgrade to LED

Whilst driving in convoy during the 2018 annual club meet, I noticed that, in sunlight, of which we had a lot, the rear lights on several cars, including my own, were not very bright. Why and what to do?

As owners will be aware the orange and red rear light lenses begin to fade over time and with a standard clear bulb they can appear pale.

The solution I have applied to VON (My Barchetta is M666VON) is to replace the standard bulbs with coloured LEDs.

The indicator is a standard R382 21 watt single filament bulb, this I changed for an orange LED equivalent. The latest versions of LED bulbs have an in-built resistor so they flash at the correct rate.  They are available from “Better Car Lighting” see website ( at £34.99 a pair.  Follow link to Classic Cars then find page 31.

The rear and brake light is a combined R380 5/21 watt bulb.  The latest LED is a red version of this. They are available from same website Page 23 of the Classic Cars section. The price is again £34.99 and VAT needs to be added in both cases.

Fitting the bulbs is a straight “plug and play”, to use a modern term, and makes a really noticeable difference in daylight.

Better Car Lighting is a very friendly company, happy to talk on the phone and give advice.

The bulbs are not cheap but I feel well worth the money for the end result; bright rear lights.

Graham Silverton, Lincolnshire

March 2019

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