By the time Le Mans came around the design of what would be known as the MGA had effectively been finalised, the race itself being little more than a useful opportunity to check that everything was as it should be. Conceived as replacement for the traditional T-Series MGs, the MGA combined a rigid chassis with the Austin-designed, 1,489cc B-Series engine that had first appeared in the ZA Magnette. Initially this engine produced 68bhp at 5,500rpm, though this was later raised to 72bhp at the same revs to further improve performance. Running gear was based on that of the TF, with independent front suspension and a live rear axle, but as far as its road manners were concerned, the far superior MGA was in an entirely different league. Clad in a stylish aerodynamic body and capable of topping 95mph, the MGA proved an instant hit, selling 13,000 units in its first full year of production.
This wonderful example is an original UK car which was transformed into a very capable endurance rally car in the mid 1990’s. 351STE has competed in 1998 Monte Carlo Challenge, 1999 Winter Challenge, 2000 Classic Marathon, 2001 Rallye de Paris and finally the 2002 Monte Carlo Historique. Now running an 1860cc fully balanced fast road engine with 5-speed gearbox this MGA is available for immediate use in a range of motorsport disciplines or as a very capable road car.