A fully restored 1965 MGB Roadster rally car driven by Sir Stirling Moss in the 1989 Pirelli Classic Marathon is set to be auctioned by leading specialist online auction site, Car & Classic.
Repatriated from California and rebuilt at the 1989 MG Show at the NEC, Birmingham by respected marque specialists Brown & Gammons, this 1965 MGB Roadster has a unique history. Prepared for use by Sir Stirling Moss, arguably one of the greatest racing drivers of all time and winner of 16 Grand Prix, the MG was converted to right-hand drive and reborn in full rally specification ready for the 1989 Pirelli Classic Marathon. In the hands of Sir Stirling it battled rallying royalty, including Paddy Hopkirk, Roger Clarke and Ove Andersson. The plucky B finished first in class and third overall following the gruelling 2000-mile event, which started in London and journeyed across six countries including Belgium, Germany, Austria and Italy.
Originally built to FIA Appendix K specifications and complete with its 1989 FIA papers and logbook, the MG has been cherished by five UK owners since Sir Stirling’s memorable run. Used as a fast road and rally car, amongst appearances at numerous international events, it has also competed in the Tour Auto between 1993 and 2004, finishing first in class on eight occasions and topping the GT category three times. Little used in the decade prior, it underwent a second rebuild between 2021 and 2023 by Chequered Flag Classics and JS Motorsport. It has recently received a new 2.1-litre engine, rebuilt gearbox and overdrive, axle, suspension and brakes, the motor benefiting from fully uprated internals including a Kent cam, topped off with a fresh Weber carburettor. Of the £20,000 mechanical rebuild expenditure, £10,000 is accounted for by engine work alone.
Alongside plaudits earned at the Coppa D’Italia, Ypres Rally and Rally Britannia, the Roadster has also competed in numerous national rallies and historic events including those held by the MGCC, BCV8 and BRDC. Today, the versatile, on the button, ABH 123C remains eligible for a variety of historic motor sport events and would be extremely well suited to timed road rallies.
“This is a special opportunity to own a very well prepared classic rally car driven with success by one of the greatest drivers of all time,” says Car & Classic’s head of editorial Dale Vinten. “YouTube footage of Sir Stirling Moss hustling this MG along the Stelvio Pass in 1989 simply adds to its huge appeal. And thanks to its recent comprehensive mechanical overhaul, this car is ready to begin the next chapter of its fascinating story.”
Car & Classic’s auction of this 1965 MGB Roadster historic rally car runs from 9th – 13th November and carries an estimate of £30k.