Best ‘B: 1965 MG MGB Mk 1 Roadster – Sold?
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July 30, 2022, Update – We just confirmed the listing for this “Classifind” expired, so with no replacement found we’re assuming this ride “Sold?” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.
A five journal crankshaft, chrome bumpers, wire wheels, unpadded dashboard, leather seats, and a wood steering wheel. These are the qualities that make the 1965 edition among the more desirable model years of the MGB. The smooth-revving, emissions-free engine combined with quality pre-British Leyland materials of the 1965 MGB marks the year the brand jumped the shark. This nicely restored 1965 MG MGB Mk 1 Roadster, once listed in June 2022 On Craigslist in Columbia, South Carolina, features a rarely-seen black-over-red leather color combination. After only two months of ownership, the seller hints their motivation for selling is the fact a vintage Porsche 911 Carerra S in his words, “fell into my lap”, so this MGB is the collateral damage of needing garage space.
Currently offered for $21,900, Classic.com, the analytics and search engine for the collector car market, confirms the ask is at the high end of the five-year rolling average of this guide’s summary for 1965 MGBs. By clicking on the green dots in the graph below, you can navigate to each comparable car sold as a way to help you evaluate the price of the truck featured here:
As a second data point, the Collector Car Market Review Online Tool reveals the seller’s ask falls between this guide’s #2 Very Good” estimate of $16,150 and its #1 “Excellent” appraisal of $24,500.
Morris Garages, better known simply as “MG”, marketed the MGB sports car from 1962 through 1980. During that time, MG had two parent companies. British Motor Corporation (“BMC”) was the first until that company later merged as part of the Austin-Morris division of what would become British Leyland.
While MG offered several rare variants such as the MGB GT three-door 2+2 coupé (1965–1980), the six-cylinder MGC (1967–69), and the eight-cylinder 2+2 coupé, the MGB GT V8 (1973–76), the vast majority of MGBs left the Abington factory as four-cylinder-powered, two-door convertible sports cars.
When it launched in 1962, the MGB was a very modern redesign over the MGA it replaced. Unlike the body-on-frame MGA, MG engineers designed the MGB utilizing a monocoque structure. The lightweight design reduced manufacturing costs while adding to overall vehicle strength. By making better use of space the MGB offered more passenger and luggage accommodation than its predecessor despite being three inches shorter overall. Wind-up windows were standard, and a comfortable driver’s compartment offered plenty of legroom. A parcel shelf was fitted behind the seats.
The MGB was one of the first cars to feature controlled crumple zones designed to protect the driver and passenger in a 30 mph impact with an immovable barrier. The suspension was also softer, giving a smoother ride, and the larger engine gave a slightly higher top speed. The four-speed gearbox was an uprated version of the one used in the MGA with an optional, electrically activated, overdrive transmission. Wheel diameter dropped from 15 to 14 inches.
All four-cylinder-powered MGBs used BMC’s B-Series engine. This engine was essentially an enlarged version of that used in the MGA with displacement being increased from 1,622 to 1,798 cc. The earlier cars used a three-main-bearing crankshaft, 18G-series. In February 1964 positive crank-case breathing was introduced and the engine prefix changed to 18GA, until October 1964, when a five-bearing crankshaft design was introduced, the engine prefix became 18GB. Horsepower was rated at 95 net brake horsepower on both five-main-bearing and earlier three-bearing cars with peak power coming at 5,400 rpm with a 6,000 rpm redline. Torque output on the MGB had a peak of 110 lb-ft and fuel consumption was around 25 mpg.
The Ensign Films YouTube Channel features this high-quality modern video providing the rationale of why the 1965 MGB may just be the best year in the car’s eighteen-year production history:
Fix the oil leaks and convert the tachometer to the negative ground to match the rest of the upgraded wiring, and you’ll have a very sweet MGB in a great color combination from arguably the best year made.
Here’s the seller’s description:
Show or go: What would you do with this 1965 MGB? Please comment below and let us know!