When we first saw the TC, it was sitting in a carport where it had lived for well over a decade. It had been neglected and poorly cared for, and was covered in a thick layer of dirt. The interior was full of spider webs and dust. It didn’t run well and most of the lights were out. The TC was a family heirloom but the owner had nowhere to keep it so the car had to go.

Negotiations were fairly brief and once a deal was struck we called a flat bed to transport our new M.G. home. It took several hours but a tow truck finally appeared and brought the car to our house. Since it was now dark, we had to wait until morning to begin assessing the damage from sitting outside for so long.

The more I went through the car, the more I realized how much work had been done just prior to storage. The wood appeared new, upholstery filthy but in good order and amazingly the odometer reading of 1,500 miles was confirmed as accurate according to some receipts found in the door pocket. Although the paint was dirty and oxidized, it cleaned up very well after a couple days of polishing. Before long, the paint was sparkling and the interior looked brand new. Simply driving the car cleared up a lot of the mechanical issues. We had a diamond in the rough!

A few hours later…

It would be some time before we could locate all the correct electrical parts, accessories and trim that the car was missing. The first to go were the horrible VW kit car tail lamps, and then the modern headlamp bulbs with reducing rings and the plastic horns bolted to the front fenders. The plastic grill badge from a rubber-bumpered MGB went into the garbage can. Eventually the rest of the issues were sorted and the car proved itself to be a solid, reliable touring and weekend fun car. If you spend time in the mountains around Southern California, keep an eye out for us and give a wave as we go by!

A proper-looking MG TC front end!