MG MIDGET 1500
I’m on record as being an MGB devotee – and love mine, of course – but for affordable ragtop fun, the Midget offers even more for your money.
There are plenty just waiting to be plucked out of our classifieds for under our £5k budget (p52), and what you get is a two-seater that thrives on being chucked into bends and delivering two windswept occupants out the other side. For this sort of money you’re more likely to end up with the later 1500 model, with its borrowed Triumph engine and polyurethane bumpers, but as soon as you snick the snappy four-speeder into action and go for a drive you won’t care that you aren’t in one of the chrome-snouted earlier models.
The firm suspension, communicative steering and the low, snug driving position put you right in the heart of the action, and the emphasis is far more on mid-bend immediacy than straight line oomph. You’ll love it!
IS IT RUSTY? It’s important to check the Midget you’re looking at for signs of corrosion – pay particular attention to the rear wheelarches, bonnet edges, and the chassis box sections.
SHOCKING STUFF Don’t worry if the car you’re looking at has been fitted with electronic ignition – it’s a common upgrade and markedly improves reliability and economy. A starter motor that won’t engage indicates worn brushes.
KEEP IT COOL Make sure it’s not running too hot on a test drive, as it’s something cars converted to run on unleaded can do. It’s not uncommon for upgraded radiators and cooling fans to be fitted to help.
ENGINE 1493cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 65bhp@5500rpm TORQUE 76lb ft@3000rpm MAXIMUM SPEED 97mph 0-60MPH 11.9sec FUEL CONSUMPTION 25-32mpg TRANSMISSION RWD, four-speed manual