Buying an MGB V8

A name that resonates with the heartbeat of classic car aficionados.

Hull, East Yorkshire

Logo Bespoke MGB - MGB Restoration and Modernisation

What you should be aware of when buying an MGB V8

Written by Terry Lucas.

After more than 40 years the dreaded rust is almost certainly going to be found in a car using a Monocoque design. The biggest areas prone to corrode are the sills and the inner castle rails, which are the main strengthening components.

Other vulnerable places are under the wings and along the sills and floor areas. These are not all easy areas to investigate either, so Buyers beware.

One simple and easy way to check for the body strength is by looking at the door gaps, which should all be equal, if when using a trolley jack to lift front and rear alternately causes doors to be difficult to open and close, this is a sure sign something is badly wrong!

It’s always an excellent decision to improve the brakes on any car that is tuned to go faster than the original design, and the brakes were improved on the GT V8. The front brake system was fitted with larger brake calipers along with uprated brake discs, which helped bring the car to a safe stop.


Severe rust examples - MGB V8 - Bespoke MGB, Terry Lucas
Severe rust examples - MGB V8 - Bespoke MGB, Terry Lucas

V8 Engine

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Do not be dismayed if, when viewing V8 oil pressure, the normal range is 30 to 40psi whilst tick-over is 20psi these are both within the original design parameters.

Look for any blue smoke indicating worn engine components or any unusual knocks and rattles.


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The original gearbox was not the smoothest or easiest to operate. This was a great pity, as the V8 engine made such a positive difference.

Orginal Gearbox

5 Speed Gearbox

Restomod brief: gearbox - Bespoke MGB - CCHL Hull

Electrical System

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Ensure all electric items function adequately or try and determine why some items do not work, as they should.

The V8 engine transforms the traditional MG MGB GT into something wonderful and exhilarating to drive.

British Leyland began the planned V8 in 1972, but they only produced a GT version, they considered it to be a better seller than the Roadster, how wrong they were!

The MGB GT V8 was often thought of as the right car, at the wrong time, many believed it was obvious to fit the V8 engine with detailed engine bay into the MGB, it made the car much more fun, and with its epic exhaust note with tubular manifolds, it was a great pairing.

The litre V8 is a great option to buy a new MGB V8, it has a better power-to-weight ratio, is coupled to an improved gearbox, brakes, back axle and suspension are all upgraded too, other custom parts are also available.

Bespoke MGB

29 Bankside, Hull

East Yorkshire, HU5 1SY


Tel: + 00 44 333 022 0135