Lot 256 - 1959 MG A Roadster 'Twincam' to fast road specification
|Chassis Number||YD3 1878|
|Odometer reading||16,646 miles|
|Estimate||£20,000 - £26,000|
|Result||Sold - £21,000|
It is important, before the car is described here, to understand the man behind it. Thomas Boyce, a Canadian, studied engineering at the University of Toronto in Canada and in the UK at Imperial College, London, where he gained his doctorate in Engineering.
He went on to become a lecturer at the college in Mechanical Engineering.
One of his activities was working to improve the efficiency of internal combustion engines (both petrol and diesel).
He prepared the car and shared the driving with Lady Jean Denton in her MGB, enabling her to be the only sports car to complete the 1968 London to Sydney rally. She later went on to twice win the Woman's British Racing Drivers Championship in Boyce prepared cars.
On one occasion, during the Mille Miglia at Mugello, Italy, another car, a re-bodied Ginetta designed by Dr. Boyce for the single seater Group 7 GT class, easily went on to win the race. An objection was voiced to the clerk of the course by none other than Carlo Abarth. After inspection, it was decided that there was no case to answer and the Italian's objection was rejected.
So, with a technical reputation of this magnitude, what did he do with his own car? Well it helps that he owned it from new. The real changes took place in the 1970's when the engine was rebuilt using twin-choke Dellorto 45's on a gas flowed head. The intake valves were replaced with Healey valves and both inlet and exhaust valves were re-profiled. The head was fitted to a five-bearing MGB block with a nitrided crankshaft, which was cross-drilled and balanced. The pistons were Alfa Romeo to improve combustion chamber shape, gasses leaving through a straight-through stainless steel exhaust system. A steel sump was fitted with a larger baffle to prevent oil surging. (This was a common fault with the original cast aluminium sumps.) The diaphragm clutch, with Ford Transit centre plate was fitted to a lightened and balanced flywheel and connected to an MGB five-speed competition close-ratio gearbox. The rear axle was fitted with a 4.88 ratio differential and supported by multi-leaf MGB competition springs, anti-tramp bars and adjustable rear shocks.
To the front, a taller radiator was fitted to aid cooling.
The wheels have 6" wide rims fitted symmetrically to maintain correct steering geometry and all held on with competition E-Type three-eared spinners, the cones having been re-profiled to match the hubs.
The body is relatively standard, the bonnet is aluminium and louvered and the front wings are fibreglass and include a subtle flare to accommodate the wider wheels. The speedometer has been recalibrated to read correctly in conjunction with the altered axle ratio and tyres fitted. The brakes are servo-assisted with competition pads. Most of the works are documented and a full year's MoT test certificate is provided. Following a subsequent full, body-off restoration approximately ten years ago, light exercise has kept the car in check and it is ready now for its second owner. Whether historic rallying, circuit racing or standard road-work, you will probably not find a better engineered or indeed quicker MGA anywhere.
NB. There is a slight noise from 1st gear when pulling away, otherwise everything is mechanically sound.
Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Accordingly, buyers are on notice that each vehicle is offered ‘as is/as seen’ subject to the Terms and Conditions for the auction. Buyers are advised to inspect the vehicle in person or use a professional to carry out this service. Historics will not entertain disputes over descriptions.