There is no doubt that of all the British marques, MG is the one that has sunk deepest into my veins. And of those classic cars, the MGBGT holds a special place in my heart. So, for our video of the week this go round we will turn to an MG buyer’s guide. Danny Hopkins, editor of Practical Classics Magazine, uses a 1975 MGBGT Jubilee edition to illustrate what to look for — including typical trouble spots — before you make a purchase.
In structure the MGB was an innovative, modern design in 1962, utilizing a monocoque structure instead of the traditional body-on-frame construction used on both the MGA and MG T-types and the MGB’s rival, the Triumph TR series. However components such as brakes and suspension were developments of the earlier 1955 MGA with the B-Series engine having its origins in 1947. The lightweight design reduced manufacturing costs while adding to overall vehicle strength. Wind-up windows were standard, and a comfortable driver’s compartment offered plenty of legroom. A parcel shelf was fitted behind the seats.
The MGB achieved a 0–60 mph (96 km/h) time of just over 11 seconds. The 3-bearing 1798cc B-Series engine produced 95 hp (71 kW) at 5,400 rpm — upgraded in October 1964 to a five-bearing crankshaft. The majority of MGBs were exported to the United States. In 1975 US-market MGB engines were de-tuned to meet emission standards, ride height was increased by an inch (25 mm), and distinctive rubber bumpers were fitted to meet bumper standards.
The MGB was one of the first cars to feature controlled crumple zones designed to protect the driver and passenger in a 30 mph (48 km/h) impact with an immovable barrier (200 ton).
A limited production of 2,000 units of the RV8 was produced by Rover in the 1990s. Despite the similarity in appearance to the roadster, the RV8 had less than 5 percent parts interchangeability with the original car.