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it is just me? or are there more 1974 Midgets


Jedi Warrior
Is it just me? or are there more 1974 Midgets than other years?

Does it just seem that way to me, cause I have a 1974 and whenever I see another 1974 I take a mental note?

Or are there more 1974's on this forum than other years?

I wonder if we could do an analysis of the member cars, graph how many of each year are in existence.


'74's are the only ones worth keeping.


Jedi Knight
walshja said:
... are there more 1974 Midgets than other years?...

Joe...I think it's probably just you! :smile:

How are you identifying '74s? From photos? Of what? Round wheel arches?...nah, can't do that because you'll also be counting cars from October of '71 until the rubber bumpers. Lack of overriders and rubber buffers instead? That would be a better identifier since it originated on cars from December of '73. I really don't seem many of the cars with the rubber blocks on the bumpers.

Again, this is one of those areas where 'model year' is probably a misnomer. It is well documented that many export cars had a date of manufacture in one year but were first registered in a subsequent year(s).


tony barnhill

Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
I have an RWA '74 w/normal chrome bumpers - no "Sabrina's" on mine, Ray!


Jedi Knight
tony barnhill said:
I have an RWA '74 w/normal chrome bumpers - no "Sabrina's" on mine, Ray!

Which empahsizes my point, Tony. You refer to your car as a '74, but the date of manufacture was before December of 1973 (GAN5-143355), or, the bumpers/buffers/overriders have been modified.

My guess is that it was titled in 1974 and that is where your year reference came from.


tony barnhill

Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
....143029, Ray, built towards the end of November 1973 (probably one of the last non-Sabrina cars made) - that makes it a 1974 car! Just because they put the Sabrina's on the bumpers of the Midget in December doesn't mean non-Sabrina cars were not '74's!

A non-Sabrina car built towards the end of November '73 was probably on the same boat to the US as a car built in Dec with the Sabrina's & they probably sat alongside one another on the dealer's lot. They were both '74's.

tony barnhill

Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
Ah, Ray, I beg to differ: they did have model year designation...mine was made late in November '73 & 1st registered in Apr '74 as a '74 - pretty quick transport & sale that was. However, you're correct. That doesn't make it a '74. The complete VIN does!

The complete VIN for mine is: GAN5-U-E-143029G

To help understand what some of those letters mean, here's the code:

The "U" designates North America

The "E" designates a 1974 model year car - built August 1973 to October 1974 (138801 to 153920)

143029 - Puts it in the 1974 model year sequence!

Horler states on page 110, <span style="font-weight: bold"><span style="font-style: italic">"The change from one model year to the next was identified by a new code letter accompanied by a small break in the GAN5 chassis number sequence as follows:

A August 1969 to June 1970, 74886 to 88596
B June 1970 to May 1971, 89501 to 105146
C May 1971 to July 1972, 105501 to 123644
D July 1972 to August 1973, 123731 to 138753
E August 1973 to October 1974, 138801 to 153920"</span></span>


So, as with MGB's, not all '74 Midgets had "Sabrina" bumper overriders! 1974 North America Midgets have a VIN that reads:

GAN5-U-E-13881 thru 153920-G

.......I have one of the 15,119 North American 1974 Midgets...who else has one based on the VIN?


Jedi Knight
Yes, I stand corrected if we accept what Horler has to say about production dating and model year.

I have also read (need to find the reference) and tend to agree with other sources that refer to the second alpha designation as a series rather than a model year. Note that the time period covered is not a year but a variable period of time.

The reason I align myself to the second train of thought is that the official MG documentation I have been able to accumulate, dealer brochures, dealer post cards, adverts, and even the BL invoices do not refer to model year. The reason, I've read, is because it was not uncommon for cars to sit for some period, and no one wants to buy "last year's model".

Good discussion!

Back to the original question though, it's difficult to tell a '73 or '74 or whatever just by identifying features. The only real way to do it is by Date of Manufacture, or as in this discussion, using Horler's "Model Year" code (series code).



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tony barnhill

Great Pumpkin - R.I.P
& remember, Ray, some '74 cars had to be built in '73 so they would be at the dealer when the US model year changed....thus, I tend to go with Horler's explanation - each letter designation pretty closely replicates a year's worth of production that could be sold in the following year.

I once had a '67 Mustang that was built in '66 but was a '67!

Yep, good discussion all around.

Now, how many '74's do we have?


Jedi Trainee
My car also had the sabrinas, but my car has had a reduction operation. by the way isn't there a book or website that tells how many cars were built in any given year.


Staff member
Country flag
just checking Horler - interestingly, 1974 figures - 8422 LHD cars - compared to 10311 - 1973 and 11516 -1972 qnd 7553- 1971.

curiously, it also lists 1922 - 1974 LHD 1500 Midgets (pg 136) - didn't know they started that far back

Oh and 13414 1976 Midgets - wot I got - the mostest year of all
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