Desirable 1967 MKII Midget
Beautifully Restored by Bay Area British Car Specialists
High Quality Paint, Body, Interior, & Trim
Subtle Upgrades Include Minitor 8-Spoke Alloy Wheels,
Smaller Leather Steering Wheel, Tasteful Integrated Flares
1967 MG MIDGET
“Pure Fun.” “Classic British Sports Car.” “Affordable, great fun to drive.” These quotes only begin to describe one of the sports cars that played a part in the British car phenomenon of the 1960’s. Beginning with the MKI Austin Healy Sprite and MG Midget (virtually the same car produced by different manufacturers), the MG was a reasonably priced sports car that was a joy to drive, easy and inexpensive to repair, and accepted as a true British sporting car. While the first generation MG/Austin Healy was very basic with a lack of power and no amenities, by 1967, the MKII had a number of features that made it more enjoyable to drive. Also, the ’67 MG Midget was the last of the non-smog cars and is arguably the best MG Midget produced. Specifically, the 1967 MG MKII featured:
– Larger 1275cc engine
– Front disc brakes
– A larger fuel tank
– Newly designed convertible top
– Improved rear suspension including newly designed rear springs
– Roll-up windows
– Vent Windows
– Improved Instrumentation
– Locking Doors & outside door handles
The MG was purchased by its current owner in 2006 and represented an original, solid car in need of some attention. After getting the MG in running/driving condition, he enjoyed it for a few years, and eventually decided to have it restored in order to bring it to a considerably higher level. In order for the car to meet the owner’s high standards, the car was brought to a well-known and respected Bay area British car expert in 2009 where it underwent a lengthy restoration that began in 2009 and was completed in 2010, an estimated 2,500 miles ago.
Reportedly, the MG received a bare metal respray, drive-line out mechanical rebuilt (and complete painting of the engine compartment, door jambs, under hood, etc.), new interior, trim, wrinkle finish dash and much more. The quality of the workmanship, including the paint and body, was very well done resulting in cosmetics often seen on the restoration of considerably more costly vehicles. The paint shows extremely well, the car has excellent panel fit, a lovely interior, and strong mechanicals. The new Minitor British wheels and Yokohama tires set off the car beautifully and are in excellent condition and appropriate for the tastefully done, integrated wheel arches that were added at the time of the restoration.
At the time of the restoration, the car was left in largely stock configuration with no changes to the interior with the exception of adding lap belts for safety, and adding a smaller leather steering wheel with functional horn. The seats and door panels were restored, new carpet added, the convertible top bows bead blasted and painted the proper gray color, and the dash properly refinished in wrinkle finish. A new convertible top was fitted including restored top bows in the proper gray color. The top is in excellent condition with a totally clear rear / side windows. The top was not used by the current owner and due to the cold weather did not reach the fasteners at the windshield. Experience suggests that exposing the top to a warm day/sun will stretch it, making it usable.
The body is very straight with no current accident damage, or indications of previous damage. The engine compartment and trunk also show no signs of damage and are extremely solid. The sides, rear and floor of the trunk are free from damage and the trunk bumper supports and rear panel are undamaged reflecting no signs of previous repair.
The attention to detail is impressive and supports the fact that he car received professional attention, not simply an amateur “re-do.” In addition to a new interior with new seats, door panels, dash pad, carpet, restored gauges and wiring, attention was also paid to small but important items. The MG received new window felts, door locking mechanisms, rubber trim, cockpit trim, exterior door handles, and replacement of most other interior items. The exterior bright work is excellent including the front and rear bumpers, front grill, and other fasteners, most of which have been replaced with new items. The MG received new exterior emblems and has damage free lenses lights and a functional electrical system including turn signals, lights, and horn. The Midget was inspected by an independent mechanic and passed the required California safety inspection for acceptable tires, brakes, lighting systems.
When the MG was restored, the goal was to not only address the cosmetics, but to ensure a reliable, strong running MG. The engine was rebuilt down to the block including new pistons and all related components. The car received new wiring, rebuilt gauges including repair of the tachometer and speedometer. Electronic ignition was added for reliability, the braking system was gone through and the car received new components, as needed. The engine bay was painted with the engine out of the car and it appears to have all of its original factory style components including air cleaners, carburetion, exhaust system and ancillary items. The engine is clean and free from major leaks although, as with virtually all British cars of this era regardless of quality, some “seeping” can be expected.
As the photos reflect, the underside of the MG is original and solid. The inspection reflected replacement of suspension components, and a straight solid floor pan with no signs of previous or current significant damage or rust/rot. It appears as if the areas where the seat belts are mounted were strengthened for additional safety when the belts were installed at the time of the restoration. The engine and transmission are clean supporting the cars low mileage since the restoration.
The car starts immediately when hot or cold with the use of the choke, even after sitting for a period of time, and does not leak excess fluids, only marking its territory as virtually any British car of this vintage does. Oil pressure is 75 lbs. on start up with excellent oil pressure at operating temperature. The MG shifts well up and down though all gears with excellent synchros in 2nd – 4th gears. There is no noise in the gearbox, or driveline. The car tracks straight, the brakes are very good, and the emergency brake is functional and properly adjusted.
The MG represents a lovely example of what many believe is the best year of the MG Midget. The car presents very well and has proven to be totally reliable for its owner who saw the car through a costly and comprehensive cosmetic and mechanical restoration.
DETAILED HISTORY – MG MIDGET/SPRITE
It has been said that the Sprite and Midget as produced by the MG Car Company from 1958 until 1979, provided motoring enthusiasts with by far the most amount of enjoyment, for by far the least amount of money. One of the most versatile sports cars ever, owners were within days of its announcement, competing successfully with them in all branches of motor sport, and have continued doing so ever since. Equally at home whether being used for racing, rallying, and hill-climbing, these diminutive machines were and are truly competitive, and in talented hands always capable of some giant slaying results. A joy to drive, easy and inexpensive to buy and repair, these little machines represent the ultimate enthusiasts all around sports cars. A true “sports car” in every sense of the word.
The first ‘modern’ Midget was essentially a re-badged Austin Healey Sprite MkII which itself was a development from the the original 1958 MkI Sprite, more frequently known as the Frogeye. The MkI Midget, as announced in June 1961 and fitted with a 948cc BMC “A” series engine was quite basic, with a very simple interior, side screens and stowaway hood. However it did just what its creators intended, and offered sporting motoring for minimum cost. It differed from the Sprite by having a traditional MG style of grille and extra trim, a black instead of white steering wheel, and other small detail differences, the uncomplicated but attractive car bringing under one liter motoring back to MG enthusiasts for the first time since 1936. This didn’t last long though for in 1962 a more powerful version was introduced fitted with a 1098cc version of the same engine, and in 1963 further improvements arrived in the form of front disc brakes and better interior trim. At this point also the engine received some further refinement by the fitting of larger 2″ main bearings; this was in answer to the criticism of the engine being somewhat rough at higher revolutions. In all other respects the car remained as before, but big changes were to be revealed with the announcement of the MkII model in 1964.
This version incorporated a completely new and far more comfortable cockpit, with wind up windows and swiveling quarter-lights, better instrumentation, lockable doors and the option of wire wheels. The biggest change however was to the rear suspension, the quarter elliptic springs being replaced by softer half elliptic’s, resulting in a smoother ride.
In 1967 yet more power was available by the fitting of the 1275cc engine. This model, the MkIII, also benefited from a superb new design of folding hood, and a larger fuel tank. It was at this point however that all further mechanical development of the model sadly came to a halt, it remaining largely unaltered until 1974; although from the Leyland take-over in 1968 there were minor annual styling updates.
Classic Cars Ltd.