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Lot 219: MG Roadster

Fine Motor cars incl. The Jaguar Legend, Coys (14 July 2012)

The MGA was produced from 1955 to 1962 and was officially launched at the Frankfurt Motor Show. A total of 101,081 units were sold through the end of production in July 1962, the vast majority of which were exported. Only 5869 cars were sold on the home market, the highest export percentage of any British car.

The MGA design dates back to 1952, when MG designer Syd Enever created a streamlined body for George Philips' TD Le Mans car. The problem with this car was the high seating position of the driver because of the limitations of using the TD chassis. A new chassis was designed with the side members further apart and the floor attached to the bottom rather than the top of the frame sections. A prototype was built and shown to the BMC chairman Leonard Lord. He turned down the idea of producing the new car as he had just signed a deal with Donald Healey to produce Austin-Healey cars two weeks before.

Falling sales of the traditional MG models caused a change of heart and the car, initially to be called the UA-series, was brought back. As it was so different from the older MG models it was called the MGA, the first of a new line to quote the contemporary advertising. There was also a new engine available, therefore the car did not have the originally intended XPAG unit but was fitted with the BMC corporate B-Series type allowing a lower bonnet line.

The MGA had no exterior door handles. It was a body-on-frame design and used the straight-4 B series engine from the MG Magnette saloon driving the rear wheels through a 4-speed gearbox. Suspension was independent with coil springs and wishbones at the front and a rigid axle with semi-elliptic springs at the rear and steering was by rack and pinion.

This stunning example, finished in traditional white with black interior, was the subject of a full nut and bolt restoration about nine years ago (the car also has a 5 speed gearbox conversion). The car has its original handbook and numerous receipts and is supplied with photographs depicting its restoration; it also comes with a new MoT certificate.

This car represents the style of British sports car motoring in the 1950s and is as much of a pleasure to drive today as it was when it was manufactured in 1958.

Lot Details
Auction Fine Motor cars incl. The Jaguar Legend
Coys, Blenheim Palace,Woodstock, Oxfordshire, OX20 1PX
TypeCar
Lot Number219
Estimate£20000-£25000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price-
Hammer Price (inc premium)£30680
Year1958
Condition rating1
Registration numberWFD 407
Mileage-
Chassis numberHDR13/47243
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors2