Classifieds Hero: MGC
Standard MGB not quite enough? The MGC has all the boxes ticked. Here's one for sale in the AutoClassics classifieds
If a stock MGB doesn’t scratch the itch and satisfy your heavy right foot, there are a number of other classic sports cars begging for your attention. Yet one that is often overlooked is the MGC.
Back in 1967, for satisfying your inner Stirling Moss on a budget, Abingdon started producing the rebel of the MG family, with the MGC unleashed onto the buying public for those wanting more brutish power than the four-cylinder MGB could muster.
It was originally nothing more than an attempt to extend the appeal and lifespan of the MGB shape, injecting a dollop of extra horsepower by inserting a straight-six C-series engine under the bonnet. After the demise of the Austin-Healey 3000, there was a gap in the market ready to be filled with the B’s more powerful, more desirable brethren.
Even though the MGB was still selling by the bucket load, the steroid-driven MGC filled the vacuum rather nicely to start with, bringing in further profit for MG to further develop vehicle range and quality.
The resulting surge in power was impressive. 0-60mph could now be achieved in 10 seconds and acceleration continue all the way to 120mph, making the MGC one of the fastest GT cars sensible money could buy. Yet, there was a hidden clause with the MGC: understeer.
The urban legend suggests that incorrect tyre pressures from new (and particularly on the press launch cars) was to blame. But with that cast-iron C-series powerplant up front, and torsion bar front suspension in place of the B's coil spring set-up, the C has always tended to understeer heavily. It also devoured fuel at an alarming rate – even by 1960s standards. Unable to capture the imagination of potential buyers, the MGC died away after less than 24 months in production.
Even now, the MGC isn't held in such high regard as its contemporaries and, while it might not have been the replacement for the Austin-Healey everyone hoped for, it makes for a magnificent cruiser. Owners now understand that it's more GT than out and out sports car, and the smoothness and torque of the six-cylinder engine is perfectly suited to that role.
The MGC makes a great classic car purchase. It produces a supreme exhaust note and roars when pushed, churning out enough power to make driving a more relaxed affair – especially when compared to its smaller relative.
From the Classifieds
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