MGB GT
MGB
MGB Convertible

BRIEF HISTORY OF THE MG B



The  MGB is the last car built by Morris Garages at Abingdon on Thames. It also is the MG marque's biggest commercial success. Launched in 1962, the MG B replaces the MG A which career was also successful.

MGB's main innovations could make anyone smile today, therefore back in 1962 they brought a wind of change on British sports cars : unitary construction (while main competitor Triumph kept on building cars on a separate chassis) to reduce weight and costs, external door handles and winding windows (this comfort equipment was not offered on the MGA nor on the early Austin Healey Sprites and MG Midgets).




Under the bonnet, the Austin B-series engine re-bored to a 1798cc capacity gave 95 bhp to reach a top speed of 105 mph. In its time these performances were quite interesting. In the early years the MG factory entered famous motorsport competitions including the Le Mans 24 hours race with Paddy Hopkirk. Despite moderate success in competition, the MGBs still race as of today. Stirling Moss attended several times to the Monte Carlo Historic Rally with his own MG B.





MGB TECHNICAL FACTS



Version Engine Power Transmission Length Weight Top speed
MGB Mark 1
(1962-1967)
In line 4 Cyl.
1798 cc - 3 main bearings (1962-1964) and 5 bearings
twin SU HS 4 carburettors - 95 bhp 4 speed manual gearbox
no synchromesh on 1st gear
  overdrive optional on 3rd and 4th gear
389 cm 871 kg (roadster)
1047kg (GT)

105 Mph
MGB Mark 2
(1967-1974)
In line 4 Cyl. 1798 cc twin SU HS 4 carburettors (1967- 1971)
twin SU HIF 4 (1971-1974)
4 speed manual gearbox  - overdrive optional on 3rd and 4th gear - automatic optional. 389 cm 871 kg (roadstert)
1047kg (GT)
105 Mph
MGB Mark 2
(1967-1974) 
U.S. market
In line 4 Cyl. 1798 cc  emission equipment with air pump and injectors..   twin SU HS 4 carburettors (1967- 1971)
twin SU HIF 4 carburettors  (1971-1974)
4 speed manual gearbox  - overdrive optional on 3rd and 4th gear - automatic optional. 389 cm N/A 104Mph
MGB "Rubber Bumper" (1974-1980) In line 4 Cyl. 1798 cc  twin SU HIF 4 carburettors 4 speed manual gearbox  - overdrive standard on 4th automatic optional 401 cm N/A 104 Mph
MGB "Rubber Bumper" (1974-1980)
U.S. market
In line 4 Cyl. 1798 cc  emission equipment with air pump and injectors. Catalyst from 1975. twin SU HIF 4 carburettors
1 Zenith Stromberg 175CD5T carburettor (1975-1980)
4 speed manual gearbox  - overdrive standard on 4th automatic optional 401 cm N/A 90 Mph

HOW MUCH COSTS A MGB ?


It is rather difficult to give an exact price. The MGB quote varies from a version to another, and mostly depends on car's condition.

There are 3 main MGB versions (convertible or GT coupe).

The pre 1970 Mark 1 and Mark 2 MGBs : 

with chromed bumpers and aluminium grilles are considered as the most desirables and powerful. The power unit in the Mark 1 MGB did not suffer from the emission equipments that spoiled performances on later US market cars. Obviously these are the most wanted types with the highest prices. When looking for an early MGB or MGB GT, take great care to inspect the bodywork for rust, or prefer a car that undergone a complete body restoration.
These cars meet the needs of enthusiasts that do not mind the rough gearbox (no synchromesh on the first gear), the pack away hood and positive earthed electrical. This is the original 1960's MGB.

The 1970 to 1974 MGBs :

still with chromed bumpers, but with less appreciated grilles (particularly on the 1970 to 1972 cars). These cars are a good alternative to those looking for a more comfortable chrome bumper MGB. Better buy european cars, as north american export MGs are less powerful and have modified body and interior trims (side marker lamps, rubber covered overriders in 1974, dashboard without glovebox).

The rubber bumpered MGBs :

to comply with new U.S. safety regulations, the MGBs built from mid 1974 were fitted with new rubber bumpers. The north american cars (most of the LHD cars) are under powered due to emission equipments and heavier bumpers. A rubber bumper MGB cost around 40% less than a MK1 MGB. These cars can satisfy those who are looking for a daily driver that can be parked anywhere, or as a first classic car.

Regardless of the versions, the optionnal equipments also impact the car quote. The most important are : 

- overdrive
- wire wheels
- sunroof (webasto or britax) on MGB GT

WHERE CAN I FIND A MGB FOR SALE  ?

You will find MGBs for sale every month or every week in the specialized press. Many cars are offered for sale on classic cars classifieds sites on the Internet.

Do not rush to buy the first car you see (the ads may be re-submited on a regular basis when prices are too high). See and test drive several vehicles, this will allow you to ensure that you are made for this model.

To buy from classic car specialists may be good way to reduce purchase risks.
MGB GT

HOW TO FIND MGB SPARE PARTS ?

Jaguar Type E Anglo Parts catalog
Spare parts availability is the great advantage with British classic cars. For the MGB, 99.9% of the spare parts are available, plus new performance parts that were not available during the production period (surpercharger, telescopic shock absorbers, large range of camshafts, and much more).

The large number of cars still on road today helps to maintain a dynamic market, where customers demand drive spare parts production and competition between spare parts retailers  keep rates at reasonnable levels.

There are many classic car parts retailers in North America and in Europe. In most cases the spare part you will look for will be immediatly available.

Major classic car parts companies are
Moss Europe, Moss Motors, Anglo Parts, Limora, Motor Dream, etc.

Dozens of spare parts retailers sell from their web-shops. Spare parts catalogs and price lists may be downloaded directly from the Internet. Original parts catalog is also available on CD-Rom from retailers.

Heuten Jaguar parts CD Rom

HOW TO GET ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON THE MGB ?

Meet MGB owners. As many enthusiasts, they will be happy to share their experience with you, and give an objective opinion on their cars. Go to autojumbles, classic car events or contact the MG Car Club (the world's oldest car club) or the MG Owners Club.

Follow advices as well as your feelings. There are so many different MGB versions, you will certainly find the one that meet your needs. Regardless of the cost and condition, here are some questions you may ask yourself prior to select a MGB version :

- do I need a daily driver ? -> chrome or rubber bumper?

- do I need an early model or a more comfortable MGB ? -> decide wether you want a Mk1 MGB, a chrome bumpered Mk2 or a 1979 north american export type with aircond.

- is a modern car stereo important in a classic car ? -> decide if you mind to have a positive earthed car (MK1)

- will my MGB do frequent motorway trips or just backroads -> check if you need an overdrive or not.

Test drive different MGBs to make your own opinion. Some only love Mark 1 MGBs while others hate their non synchronised rough gearboxes and prefer to drive a Mk2 or rubber bumper car. Once you know what you really need in a MGB, you can not be disapointed.

Helpful books can be found on the car's history, you will find on this site selected and recommended publications.




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