(click to enlarge)

Year: 1979



Stock # NE-1979-39


Best described as 'the best MGB NEVER sold in the USA.'

Started its life as a 1979 MGB imported to the USA and designed to conform to existing US DOT and EPA standards. And, to that end, ugly rubber bumpers, ride height raised to meet US bumper height requirements, and a single 175 Stromberg 'smogger' carb providing a mere 62.5hp.. Basically, ugly, gutless, and ill handling.

Of course there was a bright light shining in the distance. To try and provide a reprieve to the handling problem, front and rear sway bars fitted at the factory. And to deal with other inherent issues of earlier cars, a vastly improved cooling system with a larger radiator and thermostatic controlled cooling fans, a power assist for the disc brakes, better wiring and electrics, bigger and more reliable gauges, more powerful heater.....in many ways, the best of all MGBs other than those three little nasty negatives (ugly/gutless/ill handling).

BUT NOT THIS CAR. 65,000 original miles, now fitted with a state of the art (for this application) Weber carb with electric choke, substantial increase in performance. Front end disassembled, rebushed, and lower springs installed, rear suspension equally lowered to the pre 1975 ride height. And finally, a complete professional chrome bumper conversion using new sheet metal, new bumpers, Mk I grille, even eliminating the side lights to provide identical aesthetics to the earliest (and best looking) MGBs.

And then the interior.....new carpets, dash and console disassembled and dyed to match the tan interior, a burled wood dashboard fitted, even has an expensive digital 'retro' stereo added. Looks like a period AM unit but in every way is a modern stereo. And a new quality wood steering wheel..

Sounds pretty good, doesn't it? But saving the best for last.....recently fitted with a Datsun 280ZX five speed gearbox. Advantages? All synchromesh, five forward gears, much closer ratios, built for a car with double (or more) horsepower, AND can be removed for service without removal of the engine. Which will save the next owner lots of money should the car ever need a rear main seal or a throw out bearing.

Add the wire wheels, brand new top and very good original tonneau, very clean engine bay and trunk (which can be improved with a trunk carpet set),

Paint offers a true 'mirror finish,' floors look great, has a new radiator, good exhaust system, starts instantly, runs perfectly, and is in the ideal colors for an MG. All in all, a very nice combination.

(a further note about these late model MGBs in general: think about it, who was buying these cars in the late 1970s? Not 'boy racers' who might have had an early MGB to zoom around college and scare co-eds. Consider the ugly/gutless/ill handling aspect AND the fact that sales were rising in the late 70s, I suspect many of these cars went to older buyers, as a 2nd or 3rd car, purchased to reclaim memories of their youth. Hence, a car such as this one, 65,000 miles over 42 years, well maintained by someone not interested in playing 'grand prix driver' in his 62.5hp MGB. But being used as an occasional, round the neighborhood, tourer. And babied as one might baby the car now, in 2021)

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The New England Classic Car Company
1483 Stratford Ave, Stratford, CT 06615


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