I have a hard time remembering anything really specific about this car, other than it was a reliable, unremarkable, dinged around, and just generally cheap MGB GT that did what I asked it to. I have no photos of it, which probably says enough right there.
I bought this car after selling my XJS…there must have been a short period when I had NO car, but it was very short. I found the car in the used car lot of a Mitsubishi dealer on Aurora Avenue. They were advertising it for $3000, but even from a cursory description in the paper there was no way it was worth that. Judging from their stock, it was clearly an “OK, we’ll give you $300 as a favor” trade-in that no wholesaler was willing to take off their hands (this was about 1995, I think).
It was a faded orangey-red and pretty scruffy, though not absolutely horrible. I offered them $1500 cash and they took the offer without much protest. As usual at a dealer, they tried to sell me on stuff like security systems, warranties, the lot…I just told the cashier, “have you seen this car?” That was that…
The MG was generally reliable. It was also “straight,” until it was used as a “how far can I back up?” bumper in a Barnes & Noble lot, which put a good dent in the grille and bonnet… somehow, that minor indescretion sucked any enthusiasm out of the machine for me. I can remember thinking “oh, great” when I came out with my books and saw the original bonnet and grille rendered unusable by an ass who didn’t even leave a note. Bah.
The car overheated one night–turned out to be a leaking pot-metal heater valve, the replacement of which cured the problem, no damage done. It’s the only car I’ve ever driven to the point where it lost power from being so hot…I have no idea why I wasn’t keeping a careful eye on the gauge. The B-series engine is a pretty tough old bird.
Let’s see…oh, right: the key broke off in the ignition switch shortly after I bought it, which meant that the stub started the car, but only with a bit of finesse. I had no desire to buy a new switch or do the work.
I kept the car about six months (I think) and bought the XJ40 Jaguar sedan as my “real” car. I sold the GT for $900 after getting a “love letter” from my employer to please move it out of their garage. As I recall, the new owner was able to drive it home but immediately had to replace the ignition switch, as the stub stopped working.
Not a bad car, and a good machine for my purposes at the time, even if it’s the only car an attractive woman has actually laughed at when I admitted it was mine. Fortunately, I had no designs on her!