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MG Midget

MG Midget Sports Car 1976

public domain Arpingstone.

1976 MG Midget at Bristol Car Show, The Downs, Bristol, England.

The MG Midget was a small sports car produced by MG division of the British Motor Corporation from 1961 through to 1979. It re-used a famous pre-war name.

MG Midget at Furrin Group Charity Autocross

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MG Midget MkI (1961-1964)

Comment "Nice little sports car"

The first version was essentially a badge engineered version of the Austin-Healey Sprite MKII and retained the quarter elliptic sprung rear axle from the original Sprite. The engine was a 948 cc A-Series with twin SU carburettors producing 46 hp (34 kW) at 5500 rpm and 53 ft·lbf (72 Nm) at 3000 rpm. Brakes were drum all round. In 1962 the engine was increased to 1098 cc raising the output to 56 hp (42 kW) at 5500 rpm and 62 ft·lbf (84 Nm) at 3250 rpm and disc brakes replaced the drums at the front.

The doors had no external handles or locks and the windows were sliding Perspex side screens.

Production was 16,080 of the small engine version and 9601 of the 1098.

MG Midget
Manufacturer BMC
Production 1961–1979
226,001 produced
Predecessor MG TF
Class Sports car
Body style(s) 2-door roadster
Engine(s) 948 cc A-Series I4
1098 cc A-Series I4
1275 cc A-Series I4
1493 cc Triumph I4
Wheelbase 80 in (2,032 mm)
Length 137 in (3,480 mm)
Width Mk I and II 53 in (1,346 mm)
Mk III and 1500 55 in (1,397 mm)
Height 48.5 in (1,232 mm) (before wheels enlarged for 1975)
Curb weight 735 kg (1620 lb) (approx)
Fuel capacity 32 L (8.5 US gal; 7.0 imp gal)[1]
Related Austin-Healey Sprite

MG Midget MkII (1964-1966)

Externally the main changes were to the doors, which gained wind up windows, quarter lights and external handles, and the windscreen which got a new frame. The hood (US - top) though modified, continued to be have a removable frame that had to be erected before the cover was put on. The rear springs were replaced by more conventional half elliptical types. The engine got better bearings allowing the power to be increased to 59 hp (44 kW) at 5750 rpm and torque to 65 lbf·ft (88 Nm) at 3500 rpm. 26,601 were made.

MG Midget MkIII (1966-1974)


The engine now grew to 1275 cc using the development seen on the Mini Cooper S. Output was 65 hp (48 kW) at 6000 rpm and 72 ft·lbf (98 Nm) at 3000 rpm. However, this was a de-tuned version of the engine that was given to the Cooper S. The Midget retained the standard 12G940 cylinder head casting that was common to other BMC 1300 cars, whereas the Cooper S had a special head with an extra two bolts to fasten it to the cylinder block. The hood was now permanently attached to the car. There were minor changes to the body in 1969 with the sills painted black and a revised black grille. "Rostyle" wheels were standardised but wire spoked ones remained an option. The square shaped rear wheel arches became rounded in 1971.

22,415 were made between 1966 and the 1969 face lift and a further 77,831 up to 1974.

MG Midget Sports Car - Nice one

N00 - Attribution 2.0

MG Midget at VSCCC European Classic Car Show.

MG Midget 1500 (1974-1979)

In order to meet US federal regulations, large black plastic bumpers (usually called rubber bumpers, despite not actually being rubber) were added to the front and rear and the ride height was increased. The A-Series engine was dropped to be replaced by the 1493 cc unit from the Triumph Spitfire and a modified Morris Marina gearbox with synchromesh on all four gears. The round rear wheel arches were now square again to increase the body strength. The last car was made on December 7th 1979 after 73,899 of the last version had been made. There was no Austin-Healey Sprite equivalent.


The car developed by Donald Healey that started as an Austin-Healey Sprite, and which spawned the late-model MG Midget has more recently been given the generic name Spridget. It really was a Healey, not an MG, but the generic name does not reflect this.

From the late 1980s on, Spridgets became popular cars for inclusion in club racing in the UK, because they were readily available and the lack of development by the original manufacturer made them easy targets for performance tuning.

Guide To Car Insurance - some useful information

The UK still has a a race series dedicated to the MG Midget which is run by the MG Car Club. The MG Midget Challenge is a national race series for MG Midgets and Austin Healey Sprites (built 1956-1979). The championship is run at all major UK circuits, with the occasional visit to Spa-Froncorchamps in Belgium. It is a serious, professional but very friendly championship and has been running since 1977.

Nice MG Midget in Orange


MG Midget Orange

Frontline Spridget (later Frontline Costello) of Batheaston have developed the car to a huge extent, so that a modern Spridget can have an engine that develops 100 PS (99 hp/74 kW) more than the original, yet weighs less. A Frontline car can achieve 0-100 km/h in around 5 seconds. The Frontline suspension developments make the car a delight to drive. This company can also support this performance with suspension and brake enhancements that make a 21st century Spridget a real competitor with a Lotus Elise.

Today, many MG Midgets are being restored helped by the availability of parts with many being re-manufactured. 'British Motor Heritage', which owns many of the original press tools, makes body panels and complete body shells. In the UK, among other suppliers, 'Moss Europe' and 'MG World UK' supply many other parts both new and used.

The MG Midget and Austin Healey Sprite High Performance Manual By Daniel N.J. Stapleton

"A guide to building a fast MG Midget or Austin-Healey Sprite for road or track. It covers each aspect of the car from the tyre contact patch up to the rollover bar and from radiator back to exhaust tailpipe. With 400 colour photos and tuning advice, it is useful for a Sprite or Midget owner"

MG Midget and Austin Healey Sprite Owner's Workshop Manual - 1958 to 1980 By J.H. Haynes




References and Notes

Wiki Source


More  pictures of the MG Midget

MG Midget Sports Car on Show

ChiemseeMan public domain

Customised MG Midget


MG Midget with a custom bonnet

Mini based MG Midget concept car


"Mini based MG Midget concept car. Never made it to production."

MG Midget Sports Car in need of renovation


This car is ideal for renovation or just parts.

Kevin's 1969 MG Midget Sports Car

Yet More Pictures of the MG Midget

Kevin's 1969 MG Midget Sports Car

MG Midget - Video

Blake's MG Midget Sports Car

This is my 1968 Midget which is a “blend” of my original I purchased in 1973, and two others I’ve owned. Besides what you see in the picture it has had substantial modifications. Mild head porting, lightened flywheel, 286 cam, 5 speed transmission from a Nissan, and the turbocharger setup from an MG Metro Turbo running 9+ boost. Then I added a fatter anti sway bar, stiffer springs & dampers, capped off with 14” spline drive superlite Wheels. Yes, it moves along rather briskly, and as a hard core enthusiast, I drive it every day and ALWAYS with the top down.  Drove it yesterday when it was just 35 degrees F.  By the way, the video of the autocross for charity is this car before the Turbo was installed. - Blake

Dave's MG Midget Sports Car

1500 MG MIDGET restored 2006 ,chrome bumper conversion bought as runner or spares for Ł it back on the road in 12 months, photo restoration at entered it on this web site and became classic of the month, Chuffed to bits with it- Regards. Dave

Martyn's MG Midget Sports Car

Martyn's midget at Shelsey Walsh, was a rubber bumper 1500 before Martyn (aged 14) decided it would look better with chrome bumpers.

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the little car with lots of zip

who has a deal on MG in phoenix?

Nice little sports car


Check-Up Of A Used Car - more useful information


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