1968 MGC GT-S Sebring Homage
Specially built by Doug Smith/MG Motorsport to compete in the 2016 Rally of the Incas at a cost of over £60k; subsequently refreshed by MG Mecca at a cost of £14k+ including rebuilt 205bhp engine and only 2,000 miles since; proven rally potential; ready for action
One of the most desirable creations ever to come out of the BMC Competitions Department, the MGC GTS was aimed squarely at taking the fight to the opposition in endurance racing.
The Competitions Department set its sights specifically on the annual 12-hour race at Sebring in Florida, believing that a lightweight 'C’ would have a power advantage over the competition in its class. Work on designing the cars began in 1966. Six body shells were built, all with those trademark flared arches, and all to be powered by a race-tuned version of the standard C-Series 2,912cc straight-six fitted with triple Webers and producing 220bhp, up 75bhp from stock.
Ultimately, only two lightweight versions of the MGC GT actually left the BMC factory, these 'Works' cars racing in the 1967 Targa Florio, the 1968 Sebring and the 84-hour-long Marathon de la Route at the Nürburgring. Their final Works-supported outing was at Sebring in 1969, after which the MGC competition project was eventually wound up.
MAG 700G left BMC’s Abingdon factory in November 1968 as a standard MGC GT. After some 47 years running in original specification it was acquired by the previous owner with only one aim in mind: to re-create the best example possible of the outstanding MGC GTS Sebring.
Right from the outset, only the best would do so it is no surprise that the vendor entrusted the restoration and conversion to MG Motorsport (Doug Smith) Ltd in Hertfordshire. MG Motorsport completely stripped and rebuilt the car to the best specification including a gas-flowed, lead-free converted head with bronze valve guides, Kent AH2 camshaft and a lightened flywheel driving via an AP HD 9.5” clutch. With Triple Weber 45DCOE carbs fitted, the engine delivered 205bhp at 4,800rpm on rolling road tests
MG Motorsport also paid attention to the suspension setup, so it could use it's new found pwer. Front suspension geometry was radically changed and gas shock absorbers all round gives the car a very agile feel. A five-speed gearbox was also fitted.
The shell was stripped to bare metal and painted in the distinctive green and white race livery of the Works Sebring cars. With endurance competition events in mind, the car was also equipped with race seats and harnesses, navigation equipment and all the specialist kit needed in order to go serious rallying. Testament to the scope and thoroughness of the rebuild are a wad of invoices which total in excess of £60,000 and are included in the history file.
Following some fast road use to bed everything in and to iron out any niggles, the car was then entered into the ERA Rally of the Incas in Autumn 2016 – serious rallying indeed! This was a gruelling high altitude event which crossed the mighty Andes mountains three times, spending most of the month-long contest above 10,000ft. A severe test for any machine and one that MAG 700G passed with flying colours, successfully completing this incredible event.
With this success under its belt, the plan was to use the car for rallying and touring closer to home. Given the gruelling nature of its recent exploits, in August 2017 the car was entrusted to renowned specialists MG Mecca for another bout of ‘no expense spared’ fettling, a stem-to-stern going-over that would ensure the car was refreshed and fighting fit for reliable use in the UK.
A considerable overhaul ensued which included the engine being completely stripped and rebuilt with bearings renewed, the head was skimmed and the water galleries enlarged to improve cooling. A new alloy radiator was added along with a higher spec oil cooler and a new exhaust manifold system. The clutch and steering rack were replaced and the back end was treated to a telescopic rear shock absorber conversion. The 7x15 Minilite alloys used for the Inca were removed and replaced with bespoke heavy-duty wire-spoked wheels. The result was a fully sorted car to fast road specification, with bills on file amounting to another £14,000+.
Since the 2017 rebuild the car has covered less than 2,000 miles, including use in UK road rallies that were rather less demanding than the epic Andes event! It comes with various past MOTs which confirm that it has covered fewer than 8,000 miles since the initial 2015 restoration.
In fine condition throughout, this expertly built and thoroughly sorted GTS Sebring homage is ready for many more adventures in the hands of its lucky new owner. It is being offered here at a fraction of the c.£75,000 lavished upon it to date so bid vigorously now and it could be you who drives it home!
For more information - contact [email protected]
Reg No: MAG700G
Chassis Number: GCD14104
Engine Number: 2927
Engine Size: 2927CC
Docs: 5 old MOT's, Invoices.
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