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1968 Austin-Healey Sprite For Sale (in CA)
E-mail Seller: Gerard Chateauvieux      Zip = 94116

If you like the Austin Healey Sprite/MG Midget, this is an opportunity to own an
exceptional quality restored example. Adding to its caché is the fact that this is the actual car
(with an MG grille) depicted in the poster artwork for the 50th MG Midget Anniversary
celebration to be held at Road America in June 2011.
The car would be a big hit at the event.

This highly detailed, very comprehensive restoration would take at least $30,000 to duplicate at this level. I can't even begin to calculate all the hours that have gone into it. Absolutely every part has been cleaned to bare metal and refurbished to new condition. In addition, all of the body shell is completely original and free of any rust ever! No patch or replacement panels were used on this car. You will not find any dings or rust bubbles typical on cars of this vintage. Absolutely everything has been rebuilt, refurbished or is new. The body shell was completely stripped of paint, including the inside and underside, and painted with color matched primer and new paint throughout. Even the inside door skins and inside fenders and engine compartment were done to match. The car was professionally painted in Viper Red. The underside and rear inner wheel wells have been undercoated with EverCoat or 3M rubberized undercoat. Both sides of all removable panels were painted while off the car as were hinges and many other bolt on parts. I spent 10 years completing the restoration and the car has only been out for a couple local shows. It looks phenomenal and runs fantastic. People who have seen it in person are blown away by the quality and detail. I would invite you to come and see the car in person as the pictures do not do it justice.

I personally like the car without bumpers, so they have been deliberately left off, but I have a very good set, including the mounting brackets and hardware that are included in the sale. All chrome and glass are excellent, though you'd want to re-chrome at least the rear bumper if you plan to use it as it has some superficial scratches in the plating.

The 1275cc engine has been completely rebuilt as well. It has all new bearings, (cam, main and rod) new .020 oversize pistons, rings, MD266 (mild street cam), new timing gears and chain, cylinder head done etc., and all rotational mass, from crank pulley to clutch cover has been balanced. Several other performance enhancements have been made including optimization of combustion and timing the cam. The engine was properly line bored and assembled so there are no oil leaks what-so-ever. The cam and lifters have been properly broken in at time of first fireup. The machinist I use has experience with British car engines, including racing engines back to the 60's, so the machine work was done properly and to the highest standards/ very close tolerances. There is an exhaust header and new exhaust system with Flowmaster muffler. I have included a video with sound in the collage below so you can hear the exhaust note and see that it does not blow any smoke from the exhaust. The inside of the engine has been coated with Glyptal high temperature coating, as has the cylinder head. This coating seals the pores in the casting and greatly improves oil return to the sump and keeps the engine running cooler by not having the oil soak up heat from the cast iron.

The transmission is the stock 4 speed "rib case" box. It is a low milage unit with like new synchros (I measured clearances) and it shifts smoothly and is as quiet as they come in all gears.

Both master cylinders were professionally brass sleeved and so they do not suffer from typical corrosion issues and will remain trouble free for years. All hydraulics are rebuild or new. Suspension bushing are new Delrin type. Wheels are factory Rostyle (4), with chrome trim rings. The wiring harness is perfect and complete without and splices or burned wires and no smoke has been let out of the harness...'-)

The car also includes 3 tops. It has a brand new convertible top, a refinished, hard to find, factory hard top, and the original factory tonneau cover. An original top boot is also included. Interior panels and carpet are also new. Some pictures show later style door panels, but I have changed them to the original correct door panels (also pictured in the collage). The only non-original items are the Miata seats. No additional holes were drilled in the floor boards nor were modifications done to the floor boards to fit them, so the installation is completely reversible if you want to install original seats (for some reason(?) I find the car is much more comfortable and drivable for longer periods of time with these the over original seats. The easy recline adjustment and leg support are a big improvement in comfort and affords greater comfort in arm position and distance from the steering wheel. They work much better with a roll bar installed as the stock seat will hit the bar, limiting range of motion. I had a 72 Midget with these Miata seats and it was a real pleasure to drive for extended periods of time. I made custom brackets to fit the seats but they retain the smooth and easy track adjustments and recline feature.

The car has a clear, current, non-salvage California title in my name but has been kept on a Non-Op registration as I have only used it for shows.

If you ever plan to restore a Sprite or MG Midget, you'll not likely find another this nice and definitely not be able to build one for what you can own this one. The only thing I'm missing is the original center cap on the stock steering wheel.

The car has only been driven 8 miles on the road.

Slideshow with more pics HERE: !!

Page created September 11, 2009