Explain To Me Why I Shouldn’t Buy This MGA Like I’m A Toddler

Illustration for article titled Explain To Me Why I Shouldn't Buy This MGA Like I'm A Toddler

Photo: Craigslist

It hurts me a little bit to admit this, but I’m a big ol’ dummy when it comes to vintage British cars. My first sports car was a Triumph TR-7 fixed head coupe that tried to kill me at least four times, and more recently I picked up a horrifyingly bad MG Midget for $300. I usually stick to German sports cars these days, but every once in a while the siren song of something awful from old blighty calls my name.

While cruising Craigslist today I stumbled upon this ratty old MGA project and my lizard brain immediately wanted to call the seller and give them 3,500 greenbacks. Given my current lack of storage, time and money, it would be a pretty bad idea for me to buy this thing, but that doesn’t make me want it any less.


Photo: Craigslist

The sun out here in the desert has totally wiped the paint, but it appears to be relatively rust free from the limited photographic evidence. Given that the chrome is all still reasonably shiny, and the patina is so so good, I would totally just expend the effort getting this thing to run and drive, and send it out into the streets of Reno as-is. Maybe some alloy wheels to replace those wires, a bit of suspension work, and maybe a high-revving motorcycle motor swap…

I’m a big fan of the look of this car, especially with its awkward hard top installed. It’s got a little bit of a C1 Corvette look to it, but shrunk down a bit and narrowed. It’s a cool look, and maybe one day I’ll have the opportunity to run one of these around for a bit. It would make a pretty cool cruiser, and there are some great roads around here that I could bomb around on to really put this thing through its paces.


Photo: Craigslist

In reality, I’m definitely not going to be buying this, but I will probably spend at least the next week daydreaming about it. What kind of engine would you swap into it if it were yours? How hardcore would you go with the suspension and brakes? Would you keep it looking like this, or give it a full restoration?

Anyway, if you’re looking for an MGA project, I’d be happy to go give it a once over for you. Check it out on Craigslist right here. You should probably watch one-time Jalop Sam Smith explain to you why you do or don’t want an MGA in this recent video from Hagerty. They’ve been on my brain ever since I watched it. 

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