Tuesday, December 15, 2009

1965 MG 1100

Back in October I wrote a post about an MG 1100. That car was sinking into the soil. It might have been too far gone to even be a parts car. The last time I checked the seller was still trying to sell it on eBay.

This is a nicely restored MG 1100.

The MG 1100 was part of ADO16 range. Designed by Alec Issigonis, with assistance from PininFarina, it was, like the Issigonis designed Mini, a triumph in packaging. It was a small car that could hold 4 people in comfort. The ADO16 cars were the first to use Dr. Alex Moulton's Hydrolastic suspension system, which gave the cars an amazingly soft ride, while still keeping their handling crisp.

Morris, Riley, Vanden Plas and MG all got a badge engineered ADO16 (Later, the Austin name would join the ranks as the Austin America). MG was a popular brand in the US at the time, so we got the MG version. The idea was to A) Create a "family" car for someone who already owned an MG sports car and B) Create the impression that this was a "sporty" economy car, unlike its main competitors from VW and Renault.

The MG ADO16 was sold in the US from 1962-1967. In 1967 it came with BMCs 1275 engine and was known as the MG 1300. The 1300 also had an upgraded interior.

These were not quick cars. It took 18 seconds to hit 60 MPH and it's top speed was 88 MPH. Still, it was quicker than the VW Beetle and Renault Dauphine. (There are a lot of things you can do to make these cars faster. The engine is the same as the engine found in the Mini. You'll never be able to make it face distorting fast, but you can shave some seconds off its 0-60 time and increase its top speed without sacrificing driveability and reliability.)

Rust was a major issue with these cars. Check for rust everywhere, but especially along the rocker panels.

The car being offered on Craigslist is interesting. The engine has been rebuilt and, if I'm understanding the ad correctly, balanced. The dash appears to be out of a later 1300. The 1100 dash had a strip speedometer and was not very sporty looking. The steering wheel is also aftermarket, and looks much better than the large, thin wheel that came with these cars.

Everything about this car looks good. It appears to have the original MG hubcaps, a nice interior and a clean engine compartment. The asking price of $5500.00 is above top dollar, but, if it's everything it appears to be, it's a realistic price for this very hard to find (in the US) car.

Located in Portland, OR, click here to see the Craigslist ad.

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