History of the MGF
MG sports car enthusiasts were bereft for 12 years after 1980, when the
Abingdon factory was closed down, bringing MGB production to a halt. The name
was kept alive on MG versions of Metro, Maestro and Montego in the 1980s, but
hints of greater things to come arrived with the 1992 MG RV8, a special
low-volume commemoration of the MGB. The RV8 was built using a restyled MGB
bodyshell produced by British Motor Heritage, who had been producing the
regular MGB bodyshell since 1988. With many sold in Japan as well as the UK,
the RV8 set the scene for an MG two-seater renaissance.
In 1995 came the long-awaited return of MG open top motoring, in the form of
the MGF. Excitingly-styled, with an ideal mid-engine layout, and new 1.8 litre
versions of the Rover K Series all-alloy twin cam engine, the MGF was by far
the most technically advanced MG sports car yet. It was also the first car to
offer the 145 Ps VVC version of the 1.8 litre K Series unit, with its ingenious
progressively variable valve timing. Heritage became involved in providing
bespoke trim packages for the MGF, together with a special hardtop as an
alternative to the factory option.
A great success from day one, the MGF became the best selling sports car in
Britain for six years, totalling over 40,000 sales, with another 37,000 going
MG Rover updated the MGF in February 2002, with engineering enhancements
including new coil spring suspension, together with sharpened styling, to
create the modern MG TF. Heritage continues to offer their high quality
hardtop, which fits both MGF and MG TF.
• Did you know?
The bore and stroke dimensions (80 x 89.3 mm) of the 1.8 K Series engine used
in the MGF and TF are almost identical to those of the MGB 1.8 B Series. The
technology moves on, but the ideal proportions for torque and usable power
remain the same!