1958 MG Magnette, Orange County

This MG Magnette was built in 1958 and spotting it last summer in Orange County got me thinking. Is it a complete relic of the past, or does it somehow fit into today’s world?

Yes it’s old, and it looks old. It drives slow, with not even 70 horsepower thrumming from its little 1.5 liter engine. There’s real wood on the dash and it has big, swooping curves that look huge on such a small car.


And yet despite having so many indicators of its age, it didn’t really seem like a tiny island of the 1950s had just parked on the curb. it was just another part of the suburban fabric, buildings of all different ages, cars, roads, people. They all seemed to be part of the same modern moment. The MG was filled up with 2011 gasoline, got its repairs done in a 2011 shop with tools and computers from 2011. It might have been old, but it wasn’t just a relic from another time.

At least, that’s how things looked to me. I’m sure that sitting behind the steering wheel and looking out through its 53-year-old windshield gives a different perspective on its age. Through the magic of the internet, I found an account from the owner of this very car talking about bopping around town in his little MG and you can read it all here, on mgexperience.net.

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