9/10/13 6:36 p.m.

Hello GRM. My name is Thomas, and I'm from Wellington County, Ontario Canada. I currently drive a 2000 Toyota ECHO, Which is actually quite fun around the corners. I popped into a local dealer to see some people that I hadn't seen in a while, and I saw it. A 1973 MG B Roadster. I've always wanted one of those, and now one's in my grasp. I want to know if it's a good idea to go for it.

The Good: Shiny chrome, aftermarket tape deck, new fan, original rostyle wheels, leather interior, nice period aftermarket leather-wrapped wheel.

The Bad: Large dent in grille & hood, needs a new top, the rostyles are starting to rust, the gear lever is about as precise as Red Green trying to kill a fly on Harold's head using a 12lb sledgehammer, it's missing a speaker, the fuel pump isn't actually bolted to anything, the seats need re-covering, and the left-hand-side mirror's loose.

List Price: $5000

While I was checking it out, a sales guy came by and said that the car was too good for me. I know the people there, so I'm hoping to pay around $3000-$4000.

Can you help me decide whether or not this is a good idea? Thanks.

nicksta43 SuperDork
9/10/13 6:40 p.m.

Toy car, daily driver?

Life is too short to drive boring cars.

9/10/13 7:16 p.m.

If you want to drive out to london I can give you the graduate course on what to look for. The shifter is a dollar fix. Rust and bogus rust repairs are your enemy. 5k is risky waters to be buying a MGB if you dont know how to sort the chaf.

LuxInterior New Reader
9/10/13 7:49 p.m.

Not sure how things work in Canada, but here in Colorado, $5k will get you an MGB without big dents and a shot top. that budget here can get you a mechanically mostly sound car with at least decent cosmetics.

A few years ago, I bought a '71 that was mechanically perfect, just needed the paint buffed for $2800. It was a heck of a find, but for that money you should be able to do a lot better.

No need to buy the first one you see. They made tons of them. If you can find one that's been well taken care of, they can be great fun and reasonably easy to live with. They are of course needful compared to anything modern.

It can be a good idea if you take your time, find a good one. ...preferably from someone who loved the car and lavished it with attention. But, I'd avoid buying a 19th hand Britidh car

LuxInterior New Reader
9/10/13 7:54 p.m.

Ooops.. Accidently hit submit. It should say:

But, I'd avoid buying an unloved,19th-hand British car with issues from a used car lot.

9/10/13 8:54 p.m.


Might be hard to believe but your 2800 dollar car would be near 10k by the time it got on a local dealer lot. Transport boarder fees and some sort of profit would see to that.

People pay more than 5k just to rehab a shell around these parts. Not including paint! Ontario is all about rust when you consider an old car.

Good chance this car has had at least one body makeover to get this far in life.

Question is how well the work was done.

Brett_Murphy GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
9/10/13 11:13 p.m.

Not much to add, except to say that the handle Luxinterior gives me cramps.

Kenny_McCormic SuperDork
9/11/13 12:02 a.m.

In America $5k is a almost mint one. And it will not get you work daily, and it will not last more than a few winters without major body work to fix the rust that will occur.

ZOO GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
9/11/13 5:17 a.m.

There's one for a similar price on the Kingston area Kijiji that sounds way better than the one from the dealer. Just sayin'

9/11/13 6:04 a.m.

I would seriously suggest buying private rather than dealer.

This Sunday, there is a huge Brit car show in Bronte hosted by the Triumph Club of Toronto. Figre there will be around 1200 cars of all sorts and at least a hundred MGBs. Good place to be if you are looking to get into the hobby.

JohnRW1621 PowerDork
9/11/13 6:15 a.m.

Seriously, be sure to drive a Miata before buying MG. At least with the miata, once you fix an issue it will stay fixed.

wlkelley3 SuperDork
9/11/13 11:29 a.m.

Granted, a Miata will out handle an MG. It depends on what you're looking for. You want a fun, simple great handling sports car then Miata is a great choice. You want an old school sports car more for the experience of driving an old sports car and driving a classic then MG is a good choice. Not as difficult to work on as people believe and everything is available.

I have both a Miata and an MG. Also have an Opel GT. Yes the Miata is faster and out handles both but the older cars are just as fun to drive. Something about driving an old sports car.

Stargazer HalfDork
9/11/13 11:32 a.m.

The sales guy told you a 40 year old MG with dents and rust is "too good for you"? That would have rubbed me the wrong way, I'd walk just out of spite. Seriously though, $5k for this car with issues and no history seems way high.

theflyingcanuck New Reader
9/11/13 11:52 a.m.

Forgot to add that there's no body, or structural rust, or filler (I've seen the certificate of authenticity), and there's only 2 owners, but as a number 4 car, it's probably worth about $3400. gearbox ain't shot, but the shift linkage is a bit wobbly. Only two owners, though. 125,000 miles on the clock, but that's sort-of a good sign. I wouldn't get a british car that's been sitting for a while. Only one dent on the grille, and the tires are quite recent. all manuals included, too. Whaddya think, now?

theflyingcanuck New Reader
9/11/13 11:53 a.m.

Also, I'd be using it as a DD

clownkiller HalfDork
9/11/13 12:12 p.m.

and a conversion kit from Moss $1500ish..

$4500+1500+ride from Ont in the fall= priceless!

Our Preferred Partners