1947 MG TC


• Only 28 miles since full concours restoration
• Huge pile of bills, historic and more recent
• Original registration number


Immediately after World War Two, ‘Export or Die’ was the mantra of British industry, and the MG TC was one of its most important (and most popular) exports. 

The model was based on the pre-war Midget – a car that had charmed thousands of US servicemen serving in the UK despite their arcane construction methods, which used wooden body frames and simple ladder chassis.

The TC was the third T-Series, following the TA of 1936 and the short-lived TB of 1939. The TC body was wider and it was and faster than the TA and TB, but it had the same fold-down windshield, flowing wings, 19-inch wire wheels, flat fuel tank and rear-mounted spare wheel. It was also only available in RHD, but his didn’t impact its US popularity. Indeed, it was a gimmick, and made very little difference on such a small car. 

Over the 10,000 TCs made before the TD replaced it in late 1948, over a third were sold in the USA, and several more exported there in later years. Today, the TC is a hugely collectable car, allied to a massive amount of nostalgia. 


This car has a pretty incredible story behind it. The current vendor purchased the vehicle from a family who had owned it since 1972. It was acquired by the previous owners father, who kept it running for a while, but then parked it up awaiting restoration. He ran a vehicle repair and restoration business himself, so the plan was to restore the TC ‘between jobs’ – but as any successful business owner knows, ‘between jobs’ never happens, and it wasn’t until 2011 that the TC was pulled out of storage and the restoration work carried out. 

The majority of the restoration effort was carried out between 2012 and 2017, to an incredibly high standard, with the intention of the car being as good as it possibly could be. And that is certainly something the vendor has achieved. 

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There are piles of paperwork with the MG, including several older bills and receipts from the 1960s before the car was acquired by the previous vendors father. While these have little relevance to the car’s current condition, they do build up a nice historical snapshot of running and owning an older car during that period. 

More recently, there are stacks of bills and sales receipts for parts and labour during the TC’s rebuild, running into tens of thousands, and from reputable pre-war MG specialists.

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Whichever angle you look at it from, this car is absolutely stunning. The paintwork – in traditional red, of course – is as striking and beautiful as you’d expect from a concours restoration job, while the chrome and trim are equally superb. 

It’s an authentic restoration, too, with fabulous detailing – the only deviation from standard being the chrome wire wheels in lieu of what would have been silver painted originals. Replacing these would be simple if authenticity was your absolute aim, but as they are they look great and really make the car pop. 

Everything else is almost as new. The tyres, the chrome, the glass. Even the hood, which comes with a full set of wet weather pop-in panels if required. In reality, we expect they’ll barely get used, as this isn’t a car that’s likely to be driven much in the wet.

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Trimmed in beige leather and with a matching dashboard and door cards, the TC is as beguiling inside as it is out. The quality is equally superb, too – with everything either restored or renewed including the clocks. The odometer currently reads just 28 miles, which is the total distance the MG has covered since its restoration. 

It is both beautifully detailed and beautifully presented, with no negative points at all. This was a high class, quality restoration and it shows.

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In line with the rest of the car, the TC’s 1,250cc XPAG engine was given a complete overhaul and rebuild during the restoration and is in absolutely tip-top running order. 

It was stripped, rebored, the crank reground and new or reconditioned parts used wherever possible to make it as close as possible to a new example. Unsurprisingly, it runs beautifully and fire up instantly. 

It’s power output of around 54bhp might not sound much, nor does a top speed of 75mph in present context, but by the standard of the time this was a quick and entertaining car to drive, and in many ways it still is. With 28 miles since it was built, the engine is essentially still being run-in. 


There are few vintage cars as instantly recognisable across the globe as the MG TC, such was its impact and association with American GIs returning home from the war.

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1947
  • Make MG
  • Model TC
  • Colour Red
  • Odometer 28 Miles
  • Engine size 1250
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Location Essex
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
75 bids
  • mi•••• £40,250 11/11/21
  • TO•••• £40,000 11/11/21
  • TO•••• £39,750 11/11/21
  • mi•••• £39,500 11/11/21
  • TO•••• £39,250 11/11/21
  • mi•••• £39,000 11/11/21
  • TO•••• £38,750 11/11/21
  • mi•••• £38,500 11/11/21
  • TO•••• £38,250 11/11/21
  • mi•••• £38,000 11/11/21

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