Collector Classics: The MGA celebrates its 60th anniversary

Marque, along with TVR and Royal Enfield, to be celebrated at 30th annual All-British show in Vancouver

Vancouver’s All-British Field Meet (ABFM) celebrates its 30th anniversary this Saturday (May 16) at the world-renowned VanDusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver.

This year’s honoured marques include the 60th anniversary of the MGA, British sports car manufacturer TVR and Royal Enfield Motorcycles, which are still built today in India.

The popular MGA was built from 1955 until 1962 when it was replaced by the MGB.

Its styling was so different to the older prewar MG models that it was called the MGA to represent a completely new model line, one that we witnessed go as far as the MGF in 1995 when the company was still in British hands, owned by the Rover Group.

Of the 101,081 MGAs built, some were assembled in Australia known as ‘knock-downs.’ Only 5,869 units built for the home market remained in England, making it the highest ratio exported British car of all time.

The body-on-frame design used the popular BMC four-cylinder “B series” engine, driving the rear wheels through a 4-speed gearbox. It was available with sporty wire wheels or steel-disc wheels with chrome hubcaps as a coupe or roadster.

The only major styling changes during the eight years of production involved the front grille, rear tail lights and the exterior badges.

If you come to the ABFM you may see an Australian-built MGA, currently on an around the world tour. The 1961 Monza red MGA was assembled at the Enfield plant and bears a license plate RIP (for ‘Retire in Paradise’).

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