Displacement: 1,588 cc
Horsepower: 79 bhp @ 5,600 rpm
Engine Torque: 87 ft lb @ 3,800 rpm
Top Speed: 97 mph
0 - 60 mph: 13.3 seconds
click on image to enlarge
When launched in 1955, at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the MGA was such a quantum leap from its T-Series predecessors, that the originally intended 'U'-Series designation, in keeping with Morris Garage's (MG) previous tradition of alphabetic naming, was shelved and so, it became the A, i.e. a fresh start to a whole new line.
Syd Enever had first styled the MGA's streamlined coachwork, to be mounted on a T-Series Le Mans car, but the narrow T-Series chassis and tall engine block made the seating and bonnet too high, so a new, wider, lower-slung chassis was created to overcome the cockpit issue and the shorter 1,500cc engine from the MG Magnette was incorporated to lower the front end profile.
It was an instant success, with almost 59,000 sold in the first four years. In 1959, the engine displacement was increased by 99cc, to create the MGA 1600. In addition to the increased engine performance, the 1600 also received front disc brakes. Its popularity increased still further and nearly 32,000 were sold in the next two and a half years. Interestingly, almost all the MGAs produced were sold in the export market, with only 5,869 cars of the total production of 101,081, being sold in the UK.
In all its guises, coupe, roadster, 1500, 1600, the MGA was a very competent sports car, both successful on the race track and revered on the road. In fact, Elvis was so taken with the 1600 Roadster that starred alongside him in the movie Blue Hawaii, that he bought the car after filming was complete and it now sits in Graceland, to this day, alongside his more usual Lincolns and Cadillacs.
Offered here, is a beautifully restored, numbers matching example, finished in Old English White with Red leather. Originally a Nevada car, devoid of any corrosion, it was the subject of a very painstaking, fully photo-documented, restoration in 2007. It has been driven sparingly since, just to hone its greatness and ensure that there are no bugs to mar its enjoyment. Consequently, it not only looks stunning, but drives perfectly.
With their great style, sporting performance and easy, low-cost maintenance, MGAs are an excellent choice for any classic car enthusiast, whether a beginner or a seasoned collector, and this particular example, is about as nice and well sorted as they get.