5 WAYS TO MAKE IT BET­TER

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Buying & Selling -

1 BET­TER DAMPING The rudi­men­tary sus­pen­sion sys­tem lim­its the abil­ity to ex­ploit the V8’s per­for­mance, but one an­swer lies in a switch to tele­scopic shock ab­sorbers to re­place the out­dated lever arms. Var­i­ous af­ter­mar­ket kits are avail­able.

2 KEEP­ING COOL HEADS

The V8 needs a healthy cool­ing sys­tem to avoid cylin­der head gas­ket woes, so a high ef­fi­ciency ra­di­a­tor will pay div­i­dends. At the same time, it’s worth re­new­ing the wa­ter pump, flush­ing the sys­tem, and re­fill­ing with fresh coolant so you know the whole lot is tip-top.

3 WE HAVE IG­NI­TION

It might be a com­mon mod among older clas­sics but re­plac­ing the old con­tact breaker ig­ni­tion with an elec­tronic set up is a worth­while route to im­proved re­li­a­bil­ity and start­ing. Var­i­ous op­tions are avail­able but we like the well-en­gi­neered 123 Ig­ni­tion sys­tem, which com­prises a re­place­ment dis­trib­u­tor that’s pro­gram­mable via a USB in­ter­face.

4 USE LESS MUS­CLE

Al­though the steer­ing’s not es­pe­cially weighty, a con­ver­sion to power-as­sis­tance will re­duce park­ing ef­fort and im­prove agility. An elec­tric set-up from the likes of EZ Power Steer­ing is one op­tion, al­though the MG Own­ers’ Club also of­fers a con­ver­sion kit for around £1500. Fur­ther mod­i­fi­ca­tions are re­quired.

5 FOUR TO FIVE SPEEDS

A com­mon up­grade is con­vert­ing to a five-speed trans­mis­sion. The Borg Warner T5 ‘box is tough and works well, but Front­line Devel­op­ments of­fers a com­plete pack­age us­ing a brand new Mazda MX-5 gear­box. It’s not cheap at nigh-on £3000 but the kit has ev­ery­thing for DIY in­stal­la­tion.

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