Thu, 16th Feb 2012 13:30

The Pavilion Gardens

  Lot 28

1961 MG Midget

Sold for £5,850

(including buyers premium)

Lot details
Registration No: 548 XUE
Chassis No: GAN1/906
Mot Expiry: Dec 2012

By the '60s, the MG Car Company had long since been absorbed into the giant British Motor Corporation (BMC). In an effort to fully capitalise on the many respected names in its care, the company embarked upon a programme of 'badge engineering', and the new MG Midget was essentially a MKII Austin-Healey Sprite in a slightly different suit of clothes. In christening its new small sports car 'Midget', BMC revived a name made famous by a range of pre-war MGs. Certainly the Midgets, old and new, shared the same basic concept - i.e. they were two-seaters clothed in a simple, relatively light body and equipped with front-mounted engines driving the rear wheels. Moreover, they had suspension and brake components etc common to other cars, making them easy to replace or repair and cheap to service. The new Midget started life powered by a 948cc A-Series engine fed by a pair of SU carburettors. The consciously spartan specification eschewed external door handles or locks and the side windows comprised sliding perspex screens. Braking was by drums all-round. The cheap and cheerful formula was a success, however, and today's lovers of classic wind-in-the-hair motoring are increasingly discovering the charms that caused sports car fans to buy Midgets first time around.

Reportedly the subject of an older restoration, '548 XUE' is a right-hand drive, home market MKI Midget from 1961, that has recently been treated to a complete respray in its original colour of Old English White. Additional work has included the fitting of a new clutch, tonneau cover and carpets and attention to the braking system. The vendor informs us that it is a "beautifully presented car", the recently completed paintwork is "excellent", the brightwork is "in good order", the interior trim "has only minor marks", the hood is "in good condition" and the Gold Seal 948cc engine "starts and runs very well with no sign of smoking or knocking". The Midget comes complete with some invoices and receipts for the work carried out and such period features as Ace wheel trims, and is MOT'd and taxed until the end of the year. Summer fun doesn't come much cheaper than this.

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