Introduced in 1931, MG’s F-Type Magna was produced for just two years but was, all things considered, very popular for its era, with approximately 1,250 units sold. It incorporated many advanced features into its design, including an unusually low chassis with “underslung” rear suspension and MG’s first six-cylinder engine, providing higher performance and smoother operation than the four-cylinder M-Type Midget. The chassis was largely intended for sporty touring, and accordingly, most chassis were built with custom coachwork. Nonetheless, the most famous examples were the factory’s own “F2” roadsters, which achieved success in rally events during the 1930s and chalked up many speed records in highly modified form. A number of noted Grand Prix drivers of the period cut their teeth on the F2 Magna, including Prince Bira and Dick Seaman.
The example offered here, chassis number F0700, was originally built with bodywork by Jarvis of Wimbledon and used as that coachbuilder’s company demonstrator, as featured in the April 1932 issue of The Light Car magazine. In the 1960s, it was beautifully rebuilt to the most desirable F2 specification, including installation of a period-correct aftermarket Arnott supercharger. Some three decades later, in the 18-year ownership of Tom Metcalf of Mansfield, Ohio, it was fully restored, reportedly using only U.K.-sourced authentic parts, a restoration which still presents very beautifully today, with little wear since. It was subsequently displayed at the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.
The gleaming Saratoga Red bodywork contrasts beautifully with excellent brightwork, painted wire wheels, and a folding windscreen, accompanied by dual Brooklands racing screens. The leather-trimmed cockpit is complete with dual bucket seats and a machine-turned dashboard, with instruments housed within octagonal bezels. Overall, the appearance is clean, well maintained, and still of excellent quality throughout; the car is an attractive little jewel.
F2 Magnas were among the great unsung sporting machines of their era. The car offered here, from the stable of a known classic MG connoisseur, offers a new owner the opportunity to enjoy such performance on the rallies and tours of his or her choice.