'Mitzi the Midget'
Mitzi is a MG Midget Mk1 and was 'born' in 1963. She has only had two previous owners and has covered less than 40000 miles (documented). In 2007 she had a ground up restoration where every nut and bolt was stripped off. Sadly several panels were too badly rusted to be saved and were replaced with new - most notably the bonnet which was made on an 'English Wheel' proof that quality British craftsmanship is still alive and kicking! Notice that there are no door locks or exterior handles - the world was a gentler place then !!! She is no 'garage queen' or collectors investment - she is driven regularly and driven hard - that's what she was made for!!
She is fast, noisy, thirsty and desperately uncomfortable on a long journey - but GREAT FUN !!!
The photos below were taken at Cuil Bay near Oban in summer 2016.
The eagle eyed enthusiasts will spot that the bumpers are missing - they are in the garage! The wheels are Minilites as the originals were too badly rusted to be saved. She has a Tonneau cover for protecting the red leather from UV damage and a full soft roof which just clears the roll bar but she is never taken out in the rain!!
The photos below were taken at Ganavan Sands near Oban a few years before the ones above - she still had the original wheels and the real experts will notice that the wipers park to the 'wrong' side! The roll bar had been removed for powder coating.
There are many changes from standard -
The original engine was a 948cc with twin inch and a quarter SU carbs.
She now has......
- 1275cc bored out to 1340cc series A engine
- Big valve semi race head with high lift rockers and a Kent 544 cam shaft - blueprinted and tuftrided crank and shotpeened and hardened conrods. Flat topped pistons and skimmed block.
- Single inch and three quarter SU carb for use with the Supercharger*** (not currently fitted) and a single Weber 45 DCOE for use when the blower isn't fitted.
- LCB manifold and straight through stainless steel exhaust (sounds wonderful!)
- Gearbox is standard ratio but straight cut gears and was rebuilt will all new bearings and shims - a semi race clutch feeds the power through a limited slip differential.
- Brakes are discs at the front and drums at the back all with hard racing pads and shoes - very effective but squeal like a stuck pig!
- 4 point safety harnesses fitted for driver and passenger along with electrical kill switch and fire extinguisher
- Dynamo dumped in favour of a 75amp alternator
- Bigger radiator fitted and high performance water pump
- Duplex timing chain and vernier gear wheels to time the camshaft accurately
- Oil cooler fitted
- High volume electrical fuel pump fitted.
- She has passed every MOT in the last 10 years - first time !!
Performance of the original car - 0-60 if you are lucky with a tail wind - 25 seconds.
Performance now - 0 - 60 takes about 8 seconds.
Miles per gallon - about 20 !!!
Smiles per gallon - millions !!!!
*** There is a Rootes Supercharger for this car but I have tried and failed to get the compression ratio low enough for it to run reliably - even with a compression lowering kit and 4 head gaskets!! The engine currently puts out about 105BHP at the wheels - with the blower it put out 140BHP but it wouldn't have lasted long!!