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Re: '65, '66 or '67 MGB

Subject: Re: '65, '66 or '67 MGB
From: (Denise Thorpe)
Date: Mon, 4 Mar 96 14:10:04 PST
Joseph asked:

> Now that I'm officially shopping for an MGB roadster, I have a few more 
> questions. If '65, '66 and '67 B's are virtually identical, why is the '67 
> deemed the most desireable?  Am I missing something?  

My three B's are all registered (or titled) as '67's, however, the one I've 
owned for 17 years is really a '66.  The major difference between it and the 
other two is that it doesn't have backup lights.  I actually prefer the way 
the back of the car looks without backup lights, but I've discovered it's a 
safety hazard.  When people don't see backup lights, they assume the car 
isn't backing up even when they can see it moving backwards under power.

Other than that, sometime in those years, the B got a bigger gas tank (12 
instead of 10 US gallons).  All of my cars have the bigger tank.  And the 
rearend was upgraded.  My '66 and one of the '67's has the earlier rearend 
(even though it has backup lights) and my other '67 has the later rearend.
The later rearend is supposed to be easier to work on, but since all B 
rearends are somewhat bulletproof, this isn't a big deal.  BUT, I've never 
driven a B with a later rearend in the rain and I'm hoping that the rear 
brakes are less susceptible to getting wet and no longer working.

The best years for B's are '66 and '67 (IMHO).  As far as I know, all '62 
through '65 B's have the 3-main engine and refrigerator door handles.  
There's a lot of confusion about the model years of B's.  This is because 
the cars were originally registered by the year they were first sold, hence 
my '66 registered as a '67.  But in '68 when smog and safety equipment 
became big issues, it suddenly mattered what model year a car was and what 
it said on the registration.  A lot of '66's are registered as '67's, but 
no '67's are registered as '68's.  However, the major change from the 3-main 
to the 5-main model must have been something worth keeping track of because 
I've never seen a 3-main '65 registered as a '66.  In fact, I've never seen 
any B registered as a '66.  So, if you're looking at manufacture date, you 
may want a '65-'67, but if you look at registration, '67 is not the best 
year, it's the _only_ year of 5-main, pre-smog B.

> Also, a reference guide I recently saw lists '65-'67 B's at the following 
> prices/conditions: $900/#5; $2100/#4; $3400/#3; $5350/#2 and $8250/#1.  Do 
> prices seem low?  I ask this because most of the cars I've seen don't follow  
> this scale. Are the owners just hoping to recoupe their restoration costs?

The cost of anything is what the market will bear.  The market varies from 
place to place, from one season to the next, with whether a Republican or 
Democrat is in the White House, and with what people think _other_ people 
think the value of something is.  Is a baseball card for someone you didn't 
know about really worth $10,000?  Only if you think someone else will want 
it for $12,000 in a few years.  The fact that someone wants a '67 B without 
knowing why a '67 is better illustrates this principle.  The price of chrome 
bumpered B's has been surreptitiously sneaking up lately.  Price quotes may 
not be valid for more than a week in the near future.  Climb on and enjoy 
the ride.

> Joseph
> Looking for a '67B.  (I think)

Denise Thorpe

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