Registration: FTX 495
Chassis number: TC1142
Engine number: XPAG1660
Engine size: 1250cc
The MG TC is a sports car icon, developed from the early 30’s MG J and P Types with their crash gearboxes through the easier to drive and maintain TAs with synchromesh gearbox and hydraulic brakes. The TA was a great success, but its long stroke engine not very tuneable. The TB which succeeded it in 1939 had the XPAG engine with shorter stroke, better breathing and a counterbalanced crank. The new XPAG liked revs and was remarkably tuneable. Sadly production of the TB was cut short by the advent of WWll.
During W ll however US Servicemen were exposed to the appeal of MG sports cars, responsive and fun to drive rather than big and comfortable that they were used to so, by 1946, a ready market of sports car enthusiasts was waiting to be satisfied and the MG TC, a mildly updated TB, was just the car to do it, quickly becoming a sales success at home and across the world especially in America.
Start of TC production in 1946 was a challenge as everything including steel and paint was in short supply so early TCs were available in black only while bulkheads were painted in whatever paint came to hand, battleship grey and desert sand being popular at the time. FTX 495 is an early TC, first registered in Glamorgan on 26 th July 1946, Chassis
no. 1142 and Engine no. XPAG 1660. In other words a matching numbers car, finished in black cellulose with off white bulkhead. As an early car it has an aluminium rocker cover rather than steel, and a wood veneered dashboard rather
than vinyl covered.
In 1959 the car was owned by a Mr J.W.Adams when it was famously towed off the M1 on opening day. In the photo taken at the time it can be seen behind the AA Land Rover bedecked with horns, spot lights and motoring badges in the automotive fashion of the day.
By 1982 Mr Adams sent the car to Malick Cars of Kettering to be restored to its former glory. Obviously a very thorough restoration as it wasn’t finished until 1987. Photographic evidence and invoices show the work done. When completed Mr. Adams’ son David enjoyed the car until he sold it in 1998.
Since then the TC has been in the hands of engineer enthusiasts who have continued to improve and update the car with items like new interior trim in apple green leather, new master cylinder and copper brake pipes, coolant temperature gauge, 17” Brooklands Steering Wheel and a ‘VW’ steering box, a popular upgrade. A file of invoices show work done and parts restored or replaced.
The car is now in super condition both bodily and mechanically with excellent oil pressure and cylinder compressions, it drives just as a TC should. The body is rigid and the chrome excellent. It has a full set of side screens and a well
fitting hood. Surrounded as we are now by cars that can do 0-60 in 4 secs, it’s still a great thrill to drive and own the TC. It’s easy to see why it gained its place in history as one of the great sports cars of all time.