Car of the Month
Owners name: Maurizio Messina
Owners location: Venezia, Italy
Model: Midget GAN5 r/w/arch 71 - 74
Engine size/type: 1275cc A Series
Year of manufacture: 1973
Colour: Black Tulip
How long owned: 2 Years
History of Car and any work or modifications carried out: I bought my 1973 Midget Mk III in 2021 in Thiene (Vicenza, Italy). As far as I know it was imported to Italy from Germany in 2015. The BMIHT has certified the car has matching numbers and matching colours, with original Abingdon engine, Black Tulip colour with Ochre trim (just original, only cleaned). This is a rare combination, fitted only in 1973. The previous owner resprayed the car, fitted a new hood with its half tonneau-cover, and new minilite wheels with new Hankook all seasons tyres. The car’s body was good as a whole, I bought a complete tonneau cover, that is really very useful and enjoyable in the summer.
First of all in 2021 I inspected the brakes system (it was unsatisfactory…), and fitted new metal braided Aeroquip hoses, and new EBC green stuff brake pads (they work well, but they need to reach the right temperature, next time i’ll try the Mintex ones…). I’m using a Motul RBF 660 brake fluid (+325°), that is very effective in long hills. Now I can say I am satisfied, but not completely, the next step will be to fit a larger master cylinder, because the pedal travel is too long, and I’d rather prefer to reduce the freeplay and a better pedal sensitivity.
Unfortunately the engine, after 62303 Miles was in bad condition, with really excessive oil consumption. So I rebuilt the engine at the beginning of 2022, asking my mechanics to gain some more torque at low RPM. They fitted new performance pistons and some other modifications and the resulting bore and stroke gave 1308cc and some more hp too. Also the SU carburettors and all the other engine components were checked or inspected, and the same for the clutch. Gearbox and differential seem to be fine, the last thing that remains to do is to replace the dampers because they are worn. Someone is suggesting me to make a telescopic damper conversion, but I think I will not follow this suggestion, as it seems to need too much modification to the original set up and handling, that’s good for me, despite the present damper condition It will certainly be improved with new original type dampers.
I’m enthusiastic of my Midget, during the last summer I did 5000 km (3100 Miles) mainly on heavy mountain roads in the Eastern Alps in Italy and Austria. The power supply is strong and continuous from low to high RPM, and the petrol consumption is surprisingly low, great satisfaction and great pleasure! Great little MG!
Nickname of Car: Fly Fly