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MG B Buyers Guide (Bodywork)



The MGB’s sheet metal is basically well built and designed, but any steel-bodied car is prone to rust, particularly in regions with extreme winter weather.


The main areas to look out for are:-

  1. The trailing edge of the boot lid or tailgate are prone to rust and may have been filled.

  2. Sometimes wing repairs are carried out by welding new panels over the top of the old ones with accelerates the rusting in the new panels. Remove interior trim to look for signs of poor repairs. If the sill have been replaced properly then either a new rear wing will have to be fitted or a new repair panel at the bottom as the sills extent into the wings.

  3. Check the condition of the battery boxes which can corrode badly due their position under the car and also if any battery acid has leaked out.

  4. Look for varying gaps around the doors as poor alignment means badly renewed sills. Check for corners touching, large gaps or doors standing proud of the bodywork.

  5. Look at the structures under the wing as mud can collect in the upper sections of the turret and cause corrosion here. Unfortunately the only way to assess the full problem is to remove the front wing and if you suspect trouble there is usually more to be found once the wing is removed.

  6. The front wings can corrode around the headlamps and in the lower corners behind the wheels where mud is splashed up.

  7. Check the cross member under the car (these are usually fine as oil from the engine drips down and coats it) as the front suspension components all rely on this to be structurally sound.

  8. Check the lower edges of the doors from underneath for rust or filler, usually a blocked drain hole in the door can fill the door with water.

  9. Check the inner and outer sill for corrosion or cover sills hiding problems. It is not unknown for a new sill to be put on over the old corroded sill which will greatly reduce the life of the new sill. The sills are a very important part of the cars structure and should be examine carefully

  10.  Check the rear wheel arch lip for corrosion and body filler. The lower sections of the front and rear wings are also venerable due to mud being splashed up and not being removed.

  11. The front scuttle and rear deck (roadster) can be difficult panels to repair so check for any signs of corrosion or filler in these areas.