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MGC

MGC Published: 14th Mar 2016 - 0 Comments - Be the first, contribute now!

MGC
MGC
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WHY SHOULD I BUY ONE?

Once the litter of the runt, the MGC is now the most desired of this evergreen range, loved for its easy-going lazy GT touring characteristics care of a 3-litre six-cylinder engine that made this MG the intended successor to the old Big Healey.

It wasn’t of course, and with less than 9000 sold their rarity has made this once ignored higher-powered MGB hot property that’s available in both Roadster and 2+2 GT form.

WHAT CAN I GET?

Of the 8999 made, the split was uncannily pretty evenly split between Roadsters and GTs and there was a choice of manual plus optional overdrive and also automatics, the latter which proved quite popular as it fair suited that big six’s low rev nature. The short life of the MGC meant that there were few changes, the most notable being a revision of the gearing in late 1968 to improve performance, particularly those fitted with manual transmissions.

WHAT ARE THEY LIKE TO DRIVE?

The MGC was always slated for its sleepy performance and lumbering handling, both of which made the smaller-engined MGB feel sportier and more agile. The C’s most contentious issue was its handling which suffered from horrendous understeer, despite its new sophisticated torsion bar front suspension. However, it’s been well documented that this trait was partly due to incorrect tyre inflation on the road test cars (typical of BLMC!). While the proper pressures improved things considerably the die was well and truly cast, however.

Modern radials at the correct pressures (consult an MGC expert on this) transforms the car while that big heavy engine up front gives this MG excellent stability if not pace. The engine is a low-revving lump that feels slower than its 145bhp promises but the pulling torque is impressive and there’s a fair amount you can do to improve matters – lightening the flywheel to enhance throttle response is a popular mod, for example. It’s not a car that thrives on stirring the gearbox and a reason why automatics are quite pleasing to pilot, especially if all you want to do is cruise – and with fuel economy not much down on MGB figures either.

WHAT ARE THEY LIKE TO LIVE WITH?

An MGC is not that much different to owning an MGB and the step up will pose no problems apart from the fact that parts supply, especially to the engine, are not so widespread. And while you can buy complete replacement panels and part panels, complete all new bodyshells aren’t available from British Heritage as they are with the B or likely to. The engine is a lot heavier than the B-Series unit which may pose problems if you need to remove it and the torsion bar suspension can require expert setting up. Don’t be tempted to buy an MGB with the intention of making it into a C as the changes required to the chassis is considerable and those who have carried out the task wouldn’t try it again!

VERDICT

The MGC is currently having its day and prices for top ones can exceed £20,000 with ease, which is far more than MGR V8s and the earlier BGT V8s usually achieve. It’s a different animal to the MGB and perhaps a car that you grow into. While not a genuine Healey replacement, it’s no poor substitute either.



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