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MG MGA - New Appreciation for the MGA
|I have found a new appreciation for my MGA. Ive owned it for 20 years, but its only been on the road for 13. Got stranded only once because I was to knuckleheaded to notice that a screw holding the brush carrier on a Lucas alternator popped out. If I had just bothered to pull the plastic cover from the alternator I could have saved a lot of frustration and money. It was totally fixable on the side of the road. Lesson learned. Of course, Barney Gaylord has put up with my endless (and dumb) questions over the years and has kept me going. I am also running one of his gearboxes! Big hat off to him. Thank you.|
Recently I purchased an orange 1979 MGB with WORKING!!!!!!!! overdrive. Overall its pretty nice. I paid less than the sum of repairs completed just months prior. Some rust on the lower front fender and doglegs, normal, and a close inspection shows the frame rails and floors are sound. It even has the original paint that cleaned up amazingly well. It will stay in a garage and the rust will not be repaired. The carpet is tired, one crack on the dash, and perfect seats yet it is a very comfortable car. Its my 3rd MGB, first urethane bumper model. To be honest I like the chrome bumper models, but its much better than I expected. It needs an exhaust and a Bell stainless setup just arrived yesterday. Of course being heavy and bogged down with emissions equipment, its kind of a slug but no matter as in most parts of Japan stop and go driving is the norm. A perfectly modern city runabout.
After running around in the MGB for the last several weeks, I took the MGA out on the long trek into Tokyo. Its hot. Its loud. Its cramped for me. No power anything, etc. Even with all that, my MGA is a tighter, more nimble, more kick in in the seat of your pants fun car. It does not hurt that it has an MGB head, cam, and a supercharger because those dont help you in stop and go traffic. But there is just something about the MGA. Yes, I will be keeping the MGA for a long time. The MGB? Ill keep it and enjoy it for a while then Ill probably sell it and look for another project even though it is really a pretty nice car.
|If you can get away with removing the air pump and associated emissions equipment, the car will perform much better. May have to tweak the carb and timing a little too. I had a 1976 for 12 years with these changes, really enjoyed the car. At the time, state emissions testing did not include a visual check, so you would lean it out and retard the timing to pass!|
|I feel the same way about my "B". Its a little "boring" compared to the "A".... but .... Spring and Fall... nice to have "roll-up windows" and a heater!|
|My understanding is that the air pump (by itself) actually slightly improves performances. All the other 1970s-era Flintstone emissions controls are parasitic.|
|MGAs are a really nice driving car with a style that not many cars can match, but they will not out-perform an equally nice early MGB on a mountain road. A late model MGB in stock form is a bit of a dog however. The extra high ride height alone destroys the sportiness, and then add a few hundred pounds of comfort and (arguable) safety items and they suffer. Revert that '79 to earlier specification and it will perk up. But yeah, I'd take an MGA over a late model MGB any day.|
This thread was discussed between 20/05/2016 and 04/06/2016
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