Pre-war MGs are synonymous with the stylish 2-seater sports cars that simply define the era. The MG P-Types were very much part of this tradition when launched in 1934 to replace the much loved J-Type. The MG PA followed the same basic layout as its predecessor with a capacity of 847cc, cross-flow cylinder head, twin OM type SU carburettors but with a more robust 3 main bearing crankshaft and improved lubrication. The rear wheels are driven through a 4-speed non-synchromesh gearbox, via an upgraded heavy duty clutch and differential.
The top speed was quoted at the time as 75mph and to cope with this improved performance, some chassis changes were made. These included a longer wheelbase and the an upgrade to the rather inadequate 8” diameter brakes of the J2, which were enlarged to 12” diameter.
In 1935 MG entered three PAs in the Le Mans 24 hour race under the guidance of Captain George Eyston and driven by Joan Richmond, Barbara Simpson, Doreen Evans, Barbara Skinner, Margaret Allan and Colleen Eaton. Collectively the team became known as “Eyston’s Dancing Daughters”. The three cars finished the race and considering the modest 847cc engines, did well finishing 24th, 25th and 26th. Despite this success Lord Nuffield closed down the MG racing department the following year. Two of the Le Mans team cars were subsequently fitted with side-mounted superchargers and campaigned in hill climbs.
The 1935 MG PA that we are currently offering for sale at The Classic Motor Hub is an exceptional example of these fabulous little sports cars. Finished in Brooklands Green, the car was fully restored from its bare chassis by the previous owner Barrie Glasspool between 1996 and the early 2000. There are a huge number of photographs and bills showing the extent of the work done and all we can say is that the car speaks for itself. Much of the work done during this restoration was carried out by the well-known engineer, vintage racer and MG specialist Tom Dark. He rebuilt the engine with a new block, steel crank and rods with Cosworth pistons. He also rebuilt the gearbox, axles and brakes. The car is fitted with the desirable options offered when new, of a water pump and an oil filter which has now been modified to accept cartridge filters. In addition an electronic ignition system has been fitted within the distributor body by “The Distributor Doctor”.
The beautiful interior was done by M.Collingburn of North Yorkshire and the car is unusual in that the cockpit was configured so as to accommodate tall drivers. Six foot plus drivers can fit in it comfortably. Prior to the current owner’s purchase new wheels and Blockley tyres were fitted, brakes relined with modern bonded linings (which are still bedding in) and Brooklands fly screens fitted.
The current owner acquired the car through The Classic Motor Hub in 2017 and has continued to make improvements to the car, most noticeably by fitting a supercharger to the engine. Tom Dark offers reproduction side-mounted Marshall 75 units for the MG PA, as fitted to the two 1935 Le Mans cars prior to competing in hill climbs.
Such a supercharger was duly purchased and installed and it is fitted with a new but period correct, SU HV5 carburettor. A new 4-row core radiator has been fitted with an electric fan to aid cooling before the car was set up by Steve Stanton on his rolling road. The Bishops Cam steering box rebuilt by Tom Dark had, by now, “bedded in” and it was adjusted to reduce lost motion.
This MG PA has since been used with great enjoyment mainly as a smile-inducing road car attending events but it would make a wonderful VSCC entrant should someone wish to race it – the current owner declares it infinitely more fun to drive than his modern Porsche 911! The car is reluctantly for sale in order to release garage space for a car the owner had unsuccessfully tried to buy prior to acquiring the P.A. and which had recently and unexpectedly, became available again through The Hub.
This is a well set up little car that drives and looks just as you would hope. The usual teething issues of the supercharger installation have all been ironed out and the car is now ready to be enjoyed by the next lucky owner.
In 1934 when new BMB619 was registered to Cheshire constabulary, some 80 years later following reimagining by Triple M racing member Chris Smith your more than likely to be chased by your local constabulary!.....