Car of the Week: MG MGA 1600

image001Produced between 1955 and 1962, the MGA 1600 is arguably MG’s greatest sports car. Launched at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the MGA 1600 was the perfect replacement for the old and slightly dated T-Type cars that had previously dominated the market.

image003Originally thought to be the perfect replacement by MG, the public certainly agreed, and over 100,000 units were sold during the seven year production cycle. However, sadly for MG, the vast majority of these were exported and it is believed that only around 6,000 were sold in the UK, making models like this current one showcased as our ‘car of the week’ a rarity.

image005The design of the MGA was based on George Phillips’ Le Mans car, and both vehicles were designed by MG designer Syd Enever. Originally, the car’s design was turned down by BMC Chairman Leonard Lord due to the fact that he had previously signed an agreement to produce Austin-Healeys. However, only a short time after rejecting the original proposal, he was forced into action, as MG sales began to plummet.

image007Because the MGA was designed to break free from the traditions of MG and the falling sales of older models, MG added the ‘A’ to symbolise the start of a new era. In their advertising, they referred to it as “the first of a new line”.

image009The car was fitted with a straight 4 B-series engine from the Magnette saloon and the rear axle was driven by a 4-speed gearbox. On top of this, the suspension was fully independent with wishbones at the front and a rigid axle with semi-elliptic springs at the rear.

image011This particular model, a 1959 MGA 1600 is tax exempt and has just undergone an MOT. Throughout its long life, it has only had three owners and it has recently undergone a full nut and bolt rebuild. This includes new brakes, a new clutch and a completely new interior. On top of all this, the engine and the ancillaries have even been totally reconditioned with new cables fitted. A true labour of love, this MGA is one of the finest models available on the market today, and you’re unlikely to find a better model anywhere. If you’re interested, then check out the full listing of the car here.




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