|The MGA With An Attitude
CKD MGA Assembled in South Africa - CKD-109
This information gleaned from MG web site of George Dehlen.
752 MGA cars were assembled in South Africa at the Motor Assemblies Limited plant in Durban, Natal, from March 1957 to 1962. British Car Distributors Ltd, Durban.
|MGA 1500 de Luxe ***||1957-58||100|
|MGA 1600 de Luxe ***||1959-61||54|
|MGA 1600 Coupe||1959-61||54|
|MGA Twin Cam (1600 style body)||1959-61||68|
|MGA Twin Cam Coupe||1959-61||28|
Primed CKD MGA kits were shipped from Abingdon, excepting items to be manufactured locally, such as glass, tyres, and batteries. Tonneau covers were provided, but heaters were not normally fitted. Lacking the full assembly line facilities at Abingdon, the chassis were mounted on small wheels and the rolling chassis moved down the line. After adding the body panels, the vehicle including the exposed parts of the chassis was sprayed to the car colour - different from Abingdon-assembled vehicles where the entire chassis was black.
The South African- assembled MGAs are distinguished by a "Motor Assemblies Limited" plate with a code affixed to the engine bay of all vehicles assembled at the plant.
Tertius Coetzee of the MGCC Port Elizabeth Centre maintains a Southern Africa MGA Register. Philip Blackett is researching the MGA toolkits
*** - Point of clarification: The MG factory in Abingdon, England, did not produce any MGA 1500 "Deluxe" type cars (at least none on record). The MG Car Company also did not use the term "Deluxe" during time of production. What we commonly refer to as the "MGA Deluxe" model is a car built with the Twin Cam style chassis using knock off pin drive steel wheels and four wheel disk brakes, but having a pushrod engine (not a twin cam engine). The factory refered to this option as "Competition Suspension" (but in fact required a different hybrid body shell). MGA cars assembled in South Africa being refered to as "de Luxe" models almost certainly did not have these special suspension parts. This term was more likely used to refer to cars with other upgraded options. This data was acquired from the factory records in South Africa, and their use of the term "de Luxe" may remain ambiguous.
At 04:31 PM 11/12/2007 +0200, Frank Netterberg wrote:
".... my car has an alloy plate stamped 8.3 PISTONS FITTED. It is: YDH5 2010 with engine 16GBU 2059. Body number plates in engine compartment are 76872 (screwed on) and 76529
(welded on). There is an additional plate : DURBAN MOTOR ASSEMBLIES MGA 654 LC.
I bought the car in Cape Town in 1964, but have not been able to find out anything about its prior ownership history. However, the CKD package was dispatched from Abingdon in May 1959 but the car was first licensed in early 1961. Although it has a 1500 body some of the parts are 1600 style, some of the Lucas parts are stamped with late 1960 dates and some of the CKD parts and accessories were never fitted - or at least not when I bought it. It also had BLACK wing piping. Engine was and still is 1588 cc.
BO says this was one of the last batch of Twin Cams assembled from whatever was still lying around. The 8.3 pistons were fitted to overcome the piston burning problems - especially with our low octane fuel. This mod. worked, because that is one problem I never had, in spite of hard use by a then ignorant and young owner. The car has been restored and is very original, including engine. - Regards, - Frank Netterberg, Pretoria, South Africa
On 11/14/2013, Bo Giersing
"The 1600 style Coupe commenced at 2189 (not 2193). Coupes 2189, 2190, 2191,2192 were the first MGA coupes to be built in SA (there were no 1500 style coupes built here). These were incorrectly recorded as roadsters YDH5 2189, even including red top – I have the original chassis plate of YMH5 2189. Twin Cam coupes 2255 to 2258 were also incorrectly recorded as roadsters (with black top)". -- Rgds Bo