BF Auction: 1974 MGB Roadster

Sold for $3,800View Result

  • Seller: Don G entile
  • Location: Boise, Idaho
  • Mileage: 22,000 Shown
  • Chassis #: GHN5UE0367449G
  • Title Status: Clean

Rubber bumper MGBs represent a major bargain in the classic car world. You could swap out the bumpers for chrome ones, but frankly, this is a car that should just be maintained and driven! It’s not a perfect specimen but it’s solid and has the added bonus of factory wire wheels. So, if you are looking to make an affordable entry into British sports car ownership, this could be the one. Look through all the photos, leave your questions in the comments, and place your bids below!

Don, the seller, has owned this car for over 10 years and has always stored it inside. He is selling it to fund a new toy as he enters retirement. The car originally came from California and we weren’t able to find any significant rust. That’s important when you are dealing with a unibody roadster like this. The speedometer has been replaced at some point so the mileage can’t be verified. The top is in good shape though and a new alternator was installed about three months ago.

I’ve actually driven this car and can vouch that it’s a nice little runner. MGB started installing rubber bumpers midway through 1974 but they kept using the dual SU carbs rather than the later single Stromberg. Unfortunately, those are gone and a Weber sits in their place. The good news is that the early exhaust manifold is still in there so you have good flow on outgoing side. The only thing needed here is an intake and a set of SUs from an earlier car to squeeze out a few more ponies!

There’s some overspray underneath and a couple of small dents here and there but this looks to be a fun summertime cruiser. The reserve is set low and replacement parts are cheap and plentiful. Sure, the bumpers are not as pretty as shiny chrome ones but you can also park this thing at the supermarket without having to worry about runaway shopping carts. The wire wheels also make up for some of the British charm that was lost. If it were mine, I’d order a leather upholstery kit from Rimmer Bros and start looking for that set of SUs…

 

Bid On This Auction

Sold for: $3,800
Register To Bid
Ended: Sep 20, 2023 10:02am MDT
Winner: Dinty
  • Dinty
    bid $3,800.00  2023-09-20 09:59:11
  • TomN bid $3,600.00  2023-09-19 11:21:09
  • Dinty bid $3,400.00  2023-09-18 18:43:43
  • Jeremy
    bid $3,200.00  2023-09-18 10:11:04
  • CKO bid $3,000.00  2023-09-17 17:29:24
  • John M. bid $2,600.00  2023-09-16 21:20:25
  • CKO
    bid $2,500.00  2023-09-16 12:39:38
  • John M. bid $2,100.00  2023-09-15 22:38:23
  • CKO bid $2,000.00  2023-09-15 06:46:41
  • Jeremy
    bid $1,350.00  2023-09-15 04:16:57
  • shane0319 bid $1,250.00  2023-09-14 14:24:59
  • Jeremy bid $1,000.00  2023-09-14 07:25:48
  • CKO
    bid $800.00  2023-09-14 07:08:24
  • Tbadz bid $700.00  2023-09-13 21:26:20
  • TomN bid $600.00  2023-09-13 13:07:28
  • Escargot42
    bid $500.00  2023-09-13 10:29:26

Auctions Ending Soon

Comments

  1. Woody

    Nice little car, and they are fun to drive and reliable! I had a 1974 when I was in my twenties and the only mechanical issue I had was a failed waterpump and it was a 15 minute job to change I disagree with the idea of going back to the original twin carb setup ! The Weber is a lot less headaches .

    Like 7
  2. Midway

    They are a fun warm weather runners, the stock carbs are never in sync and reliable for more than a week. I see this going for 12K

    Like 0
    • Dinty

      Wow, I won. Perfect. I had a TD in ’67 and rebuilt those SUs in 20 degree weather. Had a TF for 34 years. I miss the wires!!! I promise to put SUs back on this little gem. Now I can show up at the Glenwood Springs, CO show this June instead of being an old guy without his MG!! Perfect. Now for an MGA.
      TheRealDintyMoore

      Like 0
  3. Troy

    Looks like a nice little toy I would love to have it however I think the reserve is higher than I’m currently able to drop on a car like that

    Like 0
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenStaff

      How do you know what the reserve is? It’s actually set at a very reasonable amount.

      Like 0
      • Troy

        I don’t, I’m watching the auction to see what happens

        Like 0
  4. Bill

    Nice car! The reason twin SU carbs get out of adjustment is people can’t leave them alone! I think it’s been at least ten years I “tuned” the SU’s on my MGA. Set em and forget em!

    Like 4
  5. Cobraboy

    This one is ripe for a V-8 transplant.

    Any idea the reserve?

    Like 0
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenStaff

      We don’t reveal reserves just in case sellers decide to lower them at the end but I can assure you that this one is low.

      Like 1
  6. Rufus

    “Rubber bumper MGBs represent a major bargain in the classic car world. ”
    This has been true for the last 20 years. Unfortunately, there are folks who by passing along poor information like “the stock carbs are never in sync and reliable for more than a week” promote an aura of poor quality and lack of reliability. The dual carb set up is an extremely simple and easy to maintain induction system, once set up properly requiring little or no maintenance. The problem stems from folks with no understanding of side draft carbs, trying to “fix” it. There are completely re-manufactured sets ready to install available for around $800 from that guy in Texas that re-builds SU’s. Opening the bonnet on an MBG and seeing the single weber is a let down, and only reinforces the concept of “I can do it Better” that has plagued these cars since the mid 80’s.
    This appears to be a mostly un-molested RBB that can offer plenty of top down pleasure for a low price. Maybe someone who appreciates the marque will buy it and enjoy it for what it was intended to be, rather than make wholesale changes that hurt the value from now on.

    Like 5
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenStaff

      Do you have the info for the guy in Texas?

      Like 0
      • Rufus

        Well, yes. I’m that guy. I can link my ads on other sites, or you can get with me by email. I’m not sure of the rules here, but I’m an SU rebuilder, and offer full sets as well as complete rebuilds. Like a lot of guys, I’ve been driving British iron since 70, raced SCCA, and have been buying and selling MG’s for decades. Now, I’m building carburettors and being retired.
        I’m just another guy who appreciates the MGB for what the designers had in mind, and tries to help newer owners understand and enjoy the car. Sometimes I get a little crusty when folks start with the whole “SU’s are crappy carburettors” routine. Feel free to get with me.

        Like 3
  7. Johnanthony

    In 1970 I bought a 1964 red mgb. I owned it for a little over 2 years the only problem I had with it was a bad fuel pump. The car came with abarth exhaust which made the am radio useless. I sold it to a kid down the street for a couple of hundred more than I paid for it. It ran great, started all the time once the fuel pump was replaced, even in the winter in Albany NY.

    Like 0
  8. bachldrsMember

    AMEN BILL AND RUFUS!! SU carbs are one of the simplest devices ever devised by man. They are bulletproof, easy to adjust and VERY easy to synchronize if not worn out, and once adjusted, they’re good to go for at least five years – or much longer as Bill says. I can’t imagine why anybody would want to swap out a pair of SUs for the troublesome Weber downdraft. Many of the owners I know who have switched to the Weber have since switched back to the SUs. On the later cars with the single Zenith-Stromberg carb, I can see some rationale for the Weber, but even there, I’d much rather swap to the SUs.

    Otherwise, this car has a fairly nice interior – but I don’t like the paint job. When I see paint like that, I get to wondering what’s under it. The underneath pictures look pretty good, although the patch on the castle rail under the A-pillar on the driver’s side begs for an explanation.

    And what’s with all the many pictures of the smog pump? True, it’s only rarely that you see one of these things still on the car, and when you do, the belt is usually removed as it is here, which is fine because it fails to serve it’s intended purpose and it just one more drag on the engine.

    It starts easily, but I’d have to see the oil pressure gauge to determine anything about the condition of this engine. I’m guessing the car does not have overdrive, which would be a real find if it did. If it sells cheaply enough, it might be a good entry-level example, but it might be a thinly-disguised PITA. I’d be much more excited about this car if it had not been repainted like this. It has to be redone anyway.

    I’ve had my ’73 B/GT for 37 years and it currently has 252,000 miles on it. It is my reliable three-season daily-driver, and absolutely nothing can go wrong with it that isn’t worth fixing. One of the many attributes of MGBs and Cs is that they are about the only affordable British collectible car that can still function usefully in modern traffic – and for me that includes interstates, since mine has overdrive.

    I hope the right person buys this car. Somebody who knows MGBs and will upgrade it properly over the coming years.

    Like 2
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenStaff

      The three ring binder has photos of the car before it was resprayed and it actually looked great. There was some paint chipping on the fender seams but I honestly don’t know why they resprayed it. The quality isn’t the best but I bet if someone wet sanded and buffed it, it would look good.

      Like 1
      • bobhess bobhessMember

        Certainly agree on the SU carbs. After 5 Sprites, two Midgets, one MGB, two ’55 Healey 100s, and a MGTD, all with SUs, I can say you just can’t fault them. Also, there are kits and parts available to convert the rubber bumpers to the early models and the parts to lower the car back down out of the clouds are readily available. Nice car here.

        Like 2
    • Mr Toads GarageMember

      Over the years I’ve had MANY brit cars and find them every positive thing said! OH GOSH! the first gear isn’t syncronised (I think) I ran my stock ol MGB-GT at the last race at Riverside which suprisingly didn’t trophy but the car performed properly:-didn’t plow or over steer, The brakes didn’t fade –AND I DIDN’T GET LAPPED~~! course technology has moved on BUT MG-B’s were designed to be maintained by their owner and for 2 shillings you could buy the FACTORY HOW TO RACE P EPARE YOUR CAR BOOK! Last every part you need is quickly available try that on your new stuff!!

      Like 0
  9. ClassicCarFan

    Yep. I would agree entirely on the SUs…always a shame to see that they are missing on classic Brit car like this. The single Weber is probably easier to keep adjusted, if for no other reason than there is just one of them, but the SU series carburetors are well designed instruments that can be set up accurately if in good shape.

    The one real design flaw for the SU is that the brass throttle shafts run directly in the alloy carb body and when the cars get into higher mileages this bearing surface wears, this allows small amounts of “fresh air” to be sucked in through at gap and into the venturi which messes with mixture metering making them very hard to adjust properly ( think, like having an air leak on the engine side of the MAF on a modern fuel injected system). The throttle shaft bearings on the SUs can be bushed and re-reamed to restore them to full function. There are several specialists that offer this service for a reasonable fee (Joe Curto, Apply Hydraulics)

    That single DGV series Weber will be a step down in performance compared to the twin SUs, particularly with the poorly designed manifold that they are usually sold with. I think sometimes people get a little carried away with the glamor of the Weber name (all those race teams, and Aston Martin and Lamborghini, Ferrari used them, right?) but there are different types of Weber carbs.

    There’s a guy called David Vizard, who’s famous for being the acknowledged tuning guru for the BMC A-Series engines (as used in Mini, Sprites, Midgets etc) who spent hundreds of hours doing real comparative dyno testing on various tuning parts and set ups, his conclusion was that the Twin side draft Webers will outperform twin SUs if you are talking about the very high end of the tuning scale, getting onto race motors. For most road-based levels of tune, SUs will provide performance matching the Weber equivalents.

    Like 5
    • bobhess bobhessMember

      David’s two inch book and extensive knowledge agrees with you. David Anton, Vizard’s partner in putting the book together, has a shop in Riverside, California that specializes in the British engines called APT, or Advanced Performance Technology. I don’t think there are too many people around that know as much as he does about the the engines and he supplies parts for them.

      Like 2
  10. Cobraboy

    I like SU’s. I’ve had dozens of them, two at a time. I still have my colortune & balancing tools.

    But I like V-8’s better.

    Like 0
  11. DAVE CHAMBERS

    Don , Howdy Do ? ! Your B is Sweeeet ! Providing I do some lucky bidding , I have a high school buddy from 67 (scares me also) that him & his wife live in Monterey , Ca , sooo do you cypher I could drive & see them & then head home to Oklahoma City ? Thanx Dave Chambers

    Like 1
  12. smtguy

    I have owned an MGA, Midget, MGB, and MGTC, all with twin SUs. All reliable and once balanced and set, I never touched them again.

    Like 0
  13. Joshua MortensenStaff

    The reserve is off!

    Like 0
  14. Dinty

    I’m trying to bid and it says update my account, twice now. All CC and other data is entered.

    Like 0
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenStaff

      Please give it another try.

      Like 0
  15. Timothy Mark LovingMember

    One question that I have. What is the aluminum alloy pump looking thing that has a V belt missing?? I don’t think power steering, no a/c. Please enlighten me. Thanks Buds…

    Like 0
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenStaff

      That’s an air pump and it could be removed.

      Like 0
  16. TomN

    The paint on this car looks really really bad. Orange peel all around. Owner paint job? Maybe his first shot with a spray gun? I have a bid in on it because at this price it’s a good deal. I would however get it re-sprayed.

    Like 0
  17. Don G.

    Hi Tom, the previous owner had the car painted over 10 years ago by a commercial paint shop. I do have the receipt for that, it has some overspray but buffs up nice and is very close to the original color. Please let me know if you have any other questions.

    Like 0
  18. Rufus

    IMHO this auction shows a very realistic view of the value of mildly molested rubber bumper B’s. When I say mildly molested, I refer to the addition of the weber, and the less than perfect paint. The MGB has for decades been the car that has suffered from price over quality. By that I mean that the traditionally low market prices keep the average enthusiast from spending big on things like quality paint, meaningful suspension mods and, yes, higher performance induction systems. As I said earlier, I build SU carburettors for MGB’s, and it is a fairly common comment from folks new to the hobby, “why should I spend so much for SU’s when I can put a weber on it for a couple hundred less?”. This sentiment carries over to the other systems, such as the tube shock conversions, or the interior pieces. It’s easier for the budget restricted owner to buy cheap, lower quality parts that don’t enhance the look or feel, but instead patch the issues and are “almost as good”. I’m sure owners of other moderately priced classics such as early Mustangs/Camaros, mid production run Datsun 240-260’s and tri-five Chevy’s run into the same issues.
    If you haven’t guessed, I’m somewhat of a traditionalist, while period correct changes are necessary, trying to stay within the spirit of the designer/engineers is where I try to fall with my builds. I firmly believe that each owner should be allowed to do as he pleases with his own car, I also believe that I can say that it just isn’t my cup of chowder. Congratulations to the seller and buyer. This is one of those deals where everyone is happy.
    Have fun
    Rufus

    Like 0

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