MG MGA

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MG MGA

Introduced in September 1955, the MGA was the first sports car that MG produced in full width, contemporary style bodywork, however it was still built on a separate chassis. This 2-seater used first of all the BMC B series 1489cc engine, which was powerful enough to propel the car to nearly 100 mph. A year later a steel roofed coupe was launched and this featured wind-up windows and a higher level of passenger comfort. The Coupe despite being slightly heavier than the roadster, could due to its improved aerodynamics, just break the 100 mph barrier.

In 1958 a Twin cam 1600 engine version of the car was introduced alongside the 1500, and this featured an alloy cylinder head on a 1588cc version of the BMC B series engine and was fitted with disc brakes on all four wheels. Although this car could achieve speeds of approximately 120 mph it was dropped in 1960 after about 2000 models had been built, partly due to the fact that this twin cam engine proved to be rather troublesome and unreliable. From 1959 The MGA 1600 was put into production replacing the 1500 of which nearly 60,000 had been built, and this used the conventional overhead valve 1588cc engine fitted with a cast Iron cylinder head. This version used disc brakes on the front wheels but did have the option of all wheel disc brakes. 1961 saw the final version of the MGA, the 1600 Mk II which used the 1622cc B series engine, while the bodywork and interior both saw some minor styling changes. Production of this last MGA ended in 1962 when the MGB was launched.


 

Specifications

Model

1500

1600

1600 Twin Cam

1600 Mk II

Years Produced

1955-1959

1959-1960

1958-1960

1961-1962

Body Type

2 door roadster & coupe, all steel body on steel chassis

Length

13ft 0in

13ft 0in

13ft 0in

13ft 0in

Width

4ft 10in

4ft 10in

4ft 10in

4ft 10in

Weight

2015lb

2015lb

2056lb

2015lb

Engine

4 cyl 1489cc ohv*

4 cyl 1588cc ohv*

4 cyl 1588cc dohc*

4 cyl 1622cc ohv*

Power (bhp / rpm)

72 @ 5500

79.5 @ 4800

108 @ 6700

90 @ 5500

Torque (lb ft / rpm)

77 @ 3500

87 @ 3800

105 @ 4500

97 @ 4000

Gearbox

4 speed manual with synchromesh on 2nd, 3rd and top

Driven Wheels

Rear

Rear

Rear

Rear

Brakes

Drum front & rear

F: disc. R: drum

Drum front & rear

F: disc. R: drum

Front Suspension

Independent, coil spring and wishbone

Rear Suspension

Live Axle, leaf springs

* ohv = overhead valve, dohc = double overhead camshaft

 

Performance

Model

1500

1600

1600 Twin Cam

1600 Mk II

Top Speed

98 mph

96 mph

120 mph

102 mph

0-60 mph

15.7 seconds

14.2 seconds

9.1 seconds

13.7 seconds

Fuel Consumption

28 mpg

24 mpg

22 mpg

22 mpg

 

Useful Links

MG Car Club

MG Owners Club

MGA books at Amazon.co.uk

Ashford & Faversham MG Owners Club

Gallery