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Lot 357: MGA 1500 Coupe

Collectors' Motor Cars and Automobilia, Bonhams (29 April 2013)

Although MG's EX182 prototype had debuted at Le Mans in 1955, by the time the actual race came around the design of what would be known as the MGA had effectively been finalised, the event itself being little more than a useful opportunity to check that everything was as it should be. Replacing the traditional T-Series MGs, the MGA combined a rigid chassis with the Austin-designed, 1,489cc B-Series engine. Initially the latter produced 68bhp at 5,500rpm, although this was later raised to 72bhp at the same revs to further improve performance. Running gear was based on that of the TF, with independent front suspension and a live rear axle, but as far as its road manners were concerned, the far superior MGA was in an entirely different league. Clad in a stylish aerodynamic body and capable of topping 95mph, the MGA proved an instant hit, selling 13,000 units in its first full year of production. For many enthusiasts though, particularly those living in Northern Europe, a closed car made more sense than an open roadster, and right from the start the factory offered an optional hardtop, which was followed in October 1956 by a proper fixed-head coupé. The new fixed roof closely followed the lines of the detachable hardtop while additional refinements included wind-up windows, quarter lights, outside door handles, special seats and door trims, map pockets, vinyl-covered dashboard and a carpeted stowage shelf behind the seats. The additional weight of its steel roof and superior interior appointments meant that the coupé's acceleration suffered a little, although this was offset by a higher, 100mph-plus top speed courtesy of superior aerodynamics, making it the first production MG to top the magic 'ton'. This left-hand drive MGA coupé was restored in the USA in 2001, in the course of which it was repainted in its original blue livery and fitted with new chromed bumpers, the original interior being retained. The engine was refreshed at the same time and the car has good wheels and tyres. Described as in generally very good condition and driving very well, this super MGA coupé is offered with Swansea V5.

Lot Details
Auction Collectors' Motor Cars and Automobilia
Bonhams, Hendon, RAF Museum. UK
Lot Number357
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price£11000
Hammer Price (inc premium)£12650
Condition rating
Registration number326 YUT
Chassis numberHND4338508
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors