Owned Since 1970: 1958 MGA Coupe

This 1958 MGA coupe reminds me just how pretty the fixed-head version of this popular MG two-seater is, looking quite sharp in silver paint with knock-off wire wheels. The listing describes the car as having been with the same owner since 1970, who is now getting up there in his years. The listing strikes me as being written by a son or daughter and not a senior owner, but regardless of who is selling it, I’d like to see it moved indoors ASAP. The asking price of $15K seems reasonable to me, if not downright cheap for such a pretty car. Have we been sleeping on the MGA coupes? Find it here on craigslist in Clackamas, Oregon, and thanks to Barn Finds reader Ikey H. for the find. 

The seller describes the MGA as a car that has a laser-straight body but still needs some tidying up. It seems most of the concern is limited to the interior, which does look tatty in pictures. While the photos aren’t the greatest, the body does look quite nice with consistent paint and panel gaps. Chrome looks acceptable as well, and I’m assuming the hood is simply ajar in this picture and not tweaked in some way. Speaking of the hood, no photos of the engine are included and the running condition isn’t specifically addressed; I’d wager it’s a non-runner at the moment, as the reference to a longtime elderly owner is usually code language for this car hasn’t run in a while. Who knows – perhaps if you call, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to learn it still fires up.

Even if the engine needs work or replacement, spares are still generally in good supply – and I’m quite sure there are many MGAs used for track days out there that no longer feature an original engine. It could even be an excuse to convert it to twin cam specs. Regardless of engine choice, the interior does look rough, with the door panels either half-removed or falling down of their own accord, ad the passenger-side bucket missing entirely. I can’t tell if there are any holes in the floor, but it looks to be solid in this blurry photo. If I had to guess, someone began taking the interior apart for restoration and then stopped, either due to lack of interest or simply not enjoying the task of disassembly. On the upside, the gauges and steering wheel show no obvious signs of damage.

Going down the sides, the MGA doesn’t show much in the way of dings, dents, or really any cosmetic blemishes. The wheels still look sharp and all glass remains intact. The seller says you don’t see many around wearing this color, and while I can’t officially validate those claims, I will freely admit most MGAs I see are red, black, or white – so if this is a factory color, it’s at least likely one of the harder ones to find. While I love the look of the coupe body, many enthusiasts prefer the open-air version, even for track-day use – and auction records show that nicely-presented roadsters regularly sell for $20K or better. If you don’t mind not feeling the wind in your hair, perhaps it’s worth seeing if the seller is serious about simply asking $15K, rather than listing it as a firm price.

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Comments

  1. DRV

    The BGT and these are my favorite MG’s. Too bad about this interior as it’s more expensive to get right than the others, but all of it is available. Figure out the interior replacement cost and the mechanical needs and you have an easier to own xk120 coupe brother! (Neither with A C though)

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  2. Bernie

    At a car show a while back I fell in love with a black one that had a red interior. It was so tempting and I wanted it so bad, I asked to sit in the car and start it up. The smell inside was of rich leather when I opened the door. Oohh, aaah. I wanted it even more. But I never got in that car and didn’t start it because the doors wouldn’t open wide enough for this old guy to get in. And I’m in good shape. These little beauties are for younger ones. Sigh.

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  3. lc

    The rear end reminds me of a Corvette of the same era.

  4. Del

    After looking twice , I still do not know if it runs ?

    Interior dogs breakky.

    I am thinking 5 grand if frame isn’t rotted.

    Bad presentation by seller

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  5. John

    This could make someone a beautiful little car. The hardtops were much more rigid than the topless versions. They ARE almost impossible to get into, but once there, they are also hard to get out of for very different reasons. No one will ever get used to the strange outside door handles. It will take a real sports car guy to appreciate and restore this little guy, but it could become someone’s prized possession – sadly, not mine. I got old before I was done enjoying these things.

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  6. RogerG

    MGA for “Track days”? Not a very common choice for that purpose. FOr SCCA and Vintage racing, yes, which would require an original engine type. As a twin cam MGA engine would cost a couple times what this car is worth – if you can find one, the common swap is an MGB 1800 – early will drop in, later will require mods to fit the tranny.
    MGA Floors are wood, so I hope they aren’t rusted! The body does look good, hard to tell if there’s some bubbling starting at the lower front of the door and rocker panel. The car does look quite serviceable, an could be a driver without major work – depending…

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