1953 MG TD Inskip Tourer

In the late 1930s, MG adopted the robust and affordable XPAG engine from Morris for the new T-series. The change wasn't necessarily welcomed by traditional MG fans of the time, but the new management at Morris forced them to abandon their high-strung, exotic overhead cam engines in favor of the vastly less expensive, production-based Morris unit. When motorcar production resumed post-war, MG's charming pre-war styling and light, nimble handling struck a chord with buyers, particularly among the many Americans serving overseas.

Soon, the little Abingdon-based sports car company found a steady stream of Americans eager to get one of their spindly TC "Midget" roadsters. The TC's success spurred on its replacement, the TD in 1950. That car retained elements of the pre-war look but with modernized details and a host of refinements, including independent front suspension and a roomier cabin.

The TD was the best-selling MG, with sales totaling over 10,000 cars in two versions. The MG TD built in the smallest numbers was not the Mark II or the Bertone-bodied Arnolt MG but rather one of only twelve Inskip four-seat touring models.

J.S. Inskip got his start in the car business as a salesman for the New York City Locomobile franchise after the end of World War I. Later, he left to work at the Rolls-Royce dealership located at the intersection of Eighth Avenue and 58th Street, where he did well enough to eventually start his own Rolls-Royce dealership in 1937. Additionally, J.S. Inskip was the East Coast importer for MG and other European automobiles based out of New York in the late 1940s. Inskip's elegant design and coachwork were largely applied to Rolls-Royce automobiles for well-heeled customers and are highly collectible and sought-after by collectors today.

MG competitors Morgan and Singer created four-seat versions of their sports cars, and Inskip believed there was a market for a four-seat tourer similar to the earlier MG Y-Type. Inskip transformed a stock MG TD in America by lengthening the frame by ten inches. The additional stretched wheelbase necessitated the lengthening of the driveshaft, fuel and brake lines, etc., as well as the fabrication of longer running boards, doors, and a convertible top. The addition of a rear seat, Rolls-Royce door hinges, rear fender stone-guards, knock-off wire wheels (never offered as an option on the TD), and a chrome accent on the sides of the hood curving down into the doors immediately distinguished the Inskip version from a production MG TD. A full backseat was added, as were individual front bucket seats (The two-seater TDs were fitted with a factory bench seat). The stylish sports car with room for a family (or perhaps small children) made its debut at the 1953 New York International Motor Show at a price of $2,925. An attractive alternative to the MG YT Tourer, it was expensive to produce, and its purchase price proved prohibitive to most prospective buyers.

This beautiful 1953 Inskip MG is an older, high-quality restoration showing minimal wear. The bright red paintwork and contrasting black leather, carpets, and folding cloth top all remain in excellent condition. The MG's brilliant brightwork includes the famous Inskip Lion radiator mascot, a pair of desirable Lucas road lamps, and Lucas Tripod headlamps. Mechanically, this rare MG runs and drives great and is ready for touring. The engine has been fully rebuilt and remains beautifully detailed. Remarkably, this coachbuilt MG has had only two owners in the last 38 years. The exceptional condition it is in today is not only the result of careful maintenance and storage by its thoughtful caretakers but also a testament to the quality of the comprehensive restoration it received.

Only twelve Inskip four-seat tourers were constructed, and fewer than that survive today. Rare and exotic, this very special coachbuilt sports car is one of the rarest and most desirable MG cars produced in the postwar era. With plenty of style and character, this beautiful example of Inskip craftsmanship is ideally suited for touring or club events and would make a stellar addition to any collection.


Offers welcome and trades considered



Stock number 7606

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