1953 MG TD
In 1949 a small group of MG leaders, headed by John Thornley, got
together to try to create a car that was acceptable to the North
American marketplace while at the same time would limit the
investment of the Nuffield Organization. Clearly it would be
impossible to completely create a new car, not only from a
financial point but from a timing standpoint as well. What was
needed was a little of the old, sprinkled with a little of the new.
Another key factor was to borrow or incorporate features found in
other Nuffield cars of the time that were more up to date than the
It is always nice for this writer/photographer to get some British
metal to our location. Sure, I have the best job, getting to take
pictures, and describe these beautiful works of automotive art as
they arrive here in the halls of Classic Auto Mall. My drive of
this was very satisfying, as I remember clearly pulling up from my
commute and the sun blinding me, backlighting this, one of my
favorite British cars, the TD. Here was my experience.
Noticing it was topless, and yes there is a top, but it is very
tight, but this can be replaced if you so desire. The structural
frame is all there and in good condition. As I walked around taking
it in, I can tell you it is not British Racing Green, rather
something else. Paint is showing a nice patina, I'm certain is not
original, but presents nicely. A close look at the chrome and
badging, and it is not perfect, but noting not anything that needs
immediate attention. Fenders, running boards steel wheels, attached
exterior lighting, is all there and in good condition. After a few
go arounds, I decided to hop in.
A swing of the low-slung door, and I was grabbed by, and surrounded
in the beautifully crafted interior. From the stitched leather door
panels in saddle color, with dual panels, to the comfortable
buckets with a solid back, that always amaze me on how much smaller
people were, or perceived to be in that era. Needless to say, the
tuck and roll works for comfort. A central hump has a handbrake
which greased my khakis, but what the heck, and a center mounted
small gear shift lever. As I scanned the undulating wood dash that
has lost its shine over time, I couldn't help but realizing how
beautifully designed the gauges were with their stylish font, and
exacting pointers all within this walnut environment. With the push
of a button, they came alive. I grabbed on to the oversized banjo
style MG emblazoned steering wheel, and let it warm up a bit, but
soon I'm off!
As I put the 4-speed manual in first gear, and gently rolled into
the accelerator, letting the clutch engage the transmission, I
couldn't help but being distracted by the beautiful sound of the
exhaust that these TD's produce from a mere 4-cylinder 1250CC twin
Stromberg fed engine. And it ran as smooth as silk!
Upon completing my "tool" which I did not want to stop, I decided
to give it a lift and see what the underneath looks like. What to
my wandering eyes did appear, but a nice clean, no rust, obviously
restored at one time undercarriage, with absolutely nothing
remarkable to speak badly of.
For months we could not contact the consigner, so this car sat in
what we call our "hall of shame" but it could be call the "isle of
misfit cars", with any number of issues we need to resolve prior to
putting them out there. This one just did not seem to have an
owner. Visions of sugarplums danced in my head (well actually it
was the TD), when I would secretly think maybe the owner will never
contact us!! Meanwhile I've given it 3 more "tools", so I'll leave
the light on for the next potential owner. And you may ask why
don't I just purchase it? Well as the saying goes, why buy the cow,
when I can get an occasional drink of milk for free?!
Classic Auto Mall is a 336,000-square foot classic and special
interest automobile showroom, featuring over 300 vehicles for sale
with showroom space for up to 1,000 vehicles. Also, a 400 vehicle
barn find collection is on display.
This vehicle is in our showroom in Morgantown, Pennsylvania,
conveniently located just 1-hour west of Philadelphia on the I-76
Pennsylvania Turnpike. The website is www.classicautomall.com and
our phone number is (888) 227-0914. Please contact us anytime for
more information or to come see the vehicle in person.