The partnership between Cecil Kimber and William Richard Morris began in 1921 when Morris offered Kimber his first job as a salesman in one of his Oxford garages. A year later, Kimber had already been promoted to manager and was beginning to outline plans for Morris-based competition models.
Using the small Morris engines, Kimber started to build tiny sports cars, affectionately called “Midgets”, which used their low weight to overcome their power deficit to the competition. Successful both in sales and in competition, the Midgets continued to evolve.
The new MG TA was a small two-seater with a simple spaceframe chassis, wraparound fenders and protruding headlights. With its revised dimensions the new TA was fitted with the Wolseley 10 and 40hp four-cylinder engines. The 1292cc units employed the use of a side camshaft and were coupled to a modern synchronized gearbox.
Following the TA, the TB was introduced in 1939 with a piston stroke modification, which reduced the capacity to 1250cc but gave it 4 horsepower more than the TA.
In 1946 the TC appeared. It was mechanically similar to the TB, but with a larger interior. It was also the first MG to achieve real success in sales beyond the English border, with 10,002 units produced by 1949.
MG maintained a strong connection to competition through the countless customers who took their small Midgets to the track at weekends. The company quickly capitalised on its racing pedigree by selling parts to improve mechanical performance, under the name of “Special Tuning”.
Having entered Portugal on May 2, 1946, the MG TC numbered TC-0403 was later rebuilt between 1974 and 1975. It was modified with a “Shorrock” compressor, equivalent to “Stage 4” of the factory Special Tuning program, which raised the engine output to 74 horsepower.