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This is one of those special cars we just had to be involved with, we enjoy finding cars with provenance and interesting history, and UMG 473 has the most wonderful story over the past 22 years. The MG YA last changed hands back in 1997, and since then has been truly cherished and adored, forming a major part of its previous owners’ lives, covering thousands and thousands of long-distance touring miles all over Europe. One of its most impressive rallies was the 1999 Winter Challenge to Monte Carlo where the MG covered almost 2000 miles. The Tour of Holland followed in 2000 and the list of where the car has been up to 2014 includes Bourton -on-the-Water, Brittany Tour, Islay, Jura, Mull, Arran, Lindisfarne, Snowdonia, St David’s, Exmoor, the Yorkshire Dales and even round the circuit at Silverstone. UMG 473 has created wonderful memories and proved to be an exceptionally reliable car, capable of long distance touring, holidays, MG Y Register runs all over the country and of course, ideal for attending more local events to include Harrogate MG, Ripon Old Cars and the various Regional MG Car Club meets.
Going back to the beginning, UMG 473 was first registered on the 29th August 1951 in Middlesex, supplied new by University Motors, Grosvenor, London with a plaque still present on the dashboard. The earliest documentation with the car is an original Green ‘buff' logbook dating back to 1965, recording the car as Green, still with its original registration mark UMG 473 but now in Bristol. We can track the car from this point and know it changed hands in May 1968 and later again in December 1968, staying in Bristol. From 1968 to 1983 the MG had one registered keeper and after 18 years in Bristol, the car moved to Melksham just outside of Bath where it remained for nine years. In 1992 the MG headed north to Harrogate where it spent 5 years with its owner who commissioned a major body off restoration with paperwork and various invoices to support. Work included various bodywork, a full re-paint, re-chroming, partial re-trim, NTG uprated half shafts, and any relevant mechanical re-conditioning work. UMG 473 was in the hands of its most recent owners just outside of Ripon in 1997 and in 22 years, covered an impressive 28,000 miles.
The Y Type's long-term owners purchased this car in late 1997 and by early 1998 had taken part in the Nuffield Cup Run. In May 1998 the car was taken to XPAG classic cars who completed a full engine rebuild to include re-ground crankshaft, unleaded cylinder head (27,000 miles covered since) and a year later the same firm removed and rebuilt the four speed gearbox. On its freshly built engine the MG was driven on a tour of Islay and Jura, covering 1000 miles and various runs and events included Newby Hall, Harrogate MG, the MGCC East Yorks Run, Kildale Show, Three Counties Show in Malvern and RAF Elvington in build up to its biggest test, a winter run to Monte Carlo in 1999. The MG received wide publicity with magazine and newspaper articles present in the very impressive history. In 2000 the MG was touring Holland, 2002 North France, 2003 Exmoor and meticulous records have been kept from all its events and rallies. Its most recent extensive tour was Wales in 2014 but since then the MG has had very little use and a new chapter now awaits this wonderful little car. Adding to the various cups and tankards are rally paperwork and many maintenance invoices throughout the 2000's and its clear this wasn't a car being prepared to win shows, it was prepared to prove ultra-reliable long distance touring, to be driven and enjoyed by a couple well involved with the MG Y Club scene and it became a special part of their lives.
Having been garage stored for some time, we collected the car from the Ripon area. With a new battery, the MG kicks into life with a healthy, strong engine holding very good oil pressure. The engine has nicely run in with its impressive mileage since rebuild just over 20 years ago. We quickly established a brake pedal and were able to test the car and report a nice gearbox with good synromesh. There's no doubt the MG will require some re-commissioning work before being put back on the road but everything is together and in place making this a straight forward, simple project. The MG was last painted in the early 1990's yet it still retains a deep shine and chrome work is bright. Naturally, as an older restoration there are areas of the paintwork that would benefit from improvement, but if looking for an MG to drive, it can be left as it is. The engine bay has nicely mellowed, and the interior trim is clean and tidy many, many years on since its last re-trim. With a structurally sound chassis, lots of potential for detailing and cosmetic improvement, UMG 473 is a great little find and now needs a home as good as its last one. This car is a gem, it really has been loved and rarely do we see such a fabulous collection of history as demonstrated in the photographs. From old MOT's and invoices, to newspaper cuttings, magazine articles, books, original manuals, photos, touring and rally paperwork and display material to cups and tankards, there is so much with the car. We are happy to sell the MG as it is, a nice small winter project that starts, runs and stops, we can also fully prepare the car, carry out cosmetic improvements and take the car to the level desired by its next owner. We are happy to discuss all options and ultimately would like to achieve a fair price for what is a wonderful, special car that can be soon back to its very best.