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MG 'C' Type Background

In 1931, George Eyston driving the experimental MG based on the M Type, achieved 100 mph at the Montlhery track near Paris.  The first car with a 750 cc engine to do so.  Although, the broad design of the C Type had been decided upon even before EX 120 began its record breaking, the lessons learned from this helped with the development of the C Type known as the Montlhery Midget.  Designed for racing, although suitable for road use, it was a car capable of very high crankshaft speeds due to new valve timing.  The chassis frame was of ladder type construction with front axles underslung and the rear axle passing over it giving a very low centre of gravity.  A highly successful package, the C Type was unbeatable in its class in both supercharged and unsupercharged form.  In standard form, the cars were fitted with 2 seater bodies, panelled in aluminium sheet.  The pointed tail housed the spare wheel and petrol tank from which a large diameter filler pipe led to a quick-lift cap on the extreme tail of the car.  In the front was a radiator cowl which bore an obvious family resemblance to the roughly fashioned thing which had graced the radiator of EX120 at Montlhery.  Notable, too, was the form of the top scuttle panel which rose, on this model for the first time, in two humps in front of driver and passenger to act as wind deflectors.  Finally, electrical equipment was to International Road Racing Standards, carried out with meticulous care, and there was, as standard equipment, a gauze windscreen, bonnet strap and external exhaust system, adding the final touches, from the point of view of both utility and appearance, to a thoroughly workmanlike job. 

Cars in all respects ready for the track cost £295 each, an incredibly low price when compared with their sports car counterparts.  Their popularity amongst the racing fraternity was proved at the Brooklands Double Twelve-hour race in May 1931, when 13 of them were at the starting line.  They finished the race in the first five places winning at the same time, the team prize and all class awards.

There followed many racing successes.  The cars were even more powerful in 1932 and the brake drums had to be increased to 12” diameter to cope with the high speeds.

The C Types were very successful competition cars over a number of years and some of them received considerable modifications to keep them competitive.  They were also potent road cars with a short stroke 746 cc engine capable of running effortlessly at high revolutions for long periods and in supercharged form they were more than a match for most sports cars of the period.

There were 44 made through to 1932 although there are believed to be only eight surviving in a drivable condition.

Amongst other C type victories was the 1931 Ulster TT race, won at a higher overall speed than the existing lap record.

MG C Type 1 MG C Type 2 MG C Type 3

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