1958 MG Magnette ZB SOLD

First registered in July 1958, this lovely ZB was treated to a total nut-and-bolt mechanical and body restoration and bare metal respray by MG specialists J & L Shorten of Norwich between 1996 and 1998 which cost over £20,000. As a letter on file confirms, it was subsequently described as having been restored to “concours standard. Must be the best in the country”. The extent of the work carried out is far too detailed to list in full here but is amply documented in many invoices and photos showing the progress of the rebuild.

Since the restoration was completed the car has only covered a mere 4,000 miles and remains in magnificent condition throughout with a lovely biscuit leather interior, gleaming chrome and glossy Aqua Blue metallic paintwork and nicely detailed engine bay. It also retains the attractive smaller rear window which was replaced by a wraparound screen in the later ZBs. It drives as well as it looks, it comes with an MOT valid until August 2018 (although being a pre-1960 car it is, of course, exempt from such things).

Supplied with a large history file including an old green log book from 1968, two old style V5s, four old MOTs (issued 1981; 1982; 1993 and 2001) plus the aforementioned restoration invoices and photos, it also has a parts catalogue and an original workshop manual.

Perhaps the nicest example we have ever offered, this expertly restored sporting saloon’s asking price is less than the cost of its restoration two decades ago.

For more info call/text John on 07909 231414.

Viewing anytime in Lytham St Annes.

Low-cost transport arranged for UK and Europe.

Model Info

The first monocoque car to bear the MG badge, the Magnette was designed by the great Gerald Palmer (of Jowett Javelin and Riley Pathfinder fame) and featured swooping Italian inspired styling.

Launched in 1953 at the London Motor Show with deliveries starting in March 1954, the ZA was powered by the new four-cylinder 1,489 cc B-Series engine with twin SU carburettors delivering 60bhp (the very similar Wolseley 4/44 making do with the old 1,250cc MG TF engine). Driving the rear wheels through a four-speed manual gearbox with synchromesh on the top three ratios, performance was brisk for its day with a top speed of 82mph and 25mpg economy.

Suspension was independent at the front using coil springs and had a live axle with half elliptic leaf springs at the rear. The steering was by rack and pinion. Hydraulically operated Lockheed 10-inch drum brakes were fitted to front and rear wheels. Lavishly trimmed in the best MG tradition, the car had leather upholstery while the dashboard and door cappings were in polished wood. The heater was standard but the radio still an optional extra.

The ZB came out in 1956, now with bigger 1.5-in carbs, a higher compression ratio and a revised manifold which boosted power to 68bhp and increased the top speed to 86mph. It was replaced by the more angular Pininfarina-designed Magnette MkIII at the end of 1958 after 18,524 ZBs had been sold.