Sports car projects : ADO76
When MG met Michelotti
Until recently, AROnline listed the ADO76 project as a rubber-bumpered version of the MGB, but in essence there was much more to it than that…
Moves were afoot in both Abingdon and Pressed Steel-Fisher (PSF) in Cowley to produce something with a clear 1970s style for the upcoming decade… sadly, it never ended up that way and did end up just being a project to add (stylish) rubber bumpers to the MGB.
The ADO76 programme was run in PSF in Cowley, as well as Abingdon and Longbridge – and here is one of the ideas that was flouted during the early stages of its development between 1968 and ’69. The idea was for Skunk Works in Swindon to create an MGB replacement based on a Michelotti-styled base. The main detail changes over the outgoing MGB would have been the following details:
- A longer front end including new grille and lamp surrounds.
- A ‘faster’ screen rake angle
- A completely new rear end including new lamps arrangement.
- A ‘wrap over’ ‘B’ pillar ‘targa’ top including either removable or hinged glass
roof panels (a la Tomcat).
The project was run by Don Hayter at MG Abingdon and Dave Osman at PSF, and according to one engineer involved in the ADO76 programme, this was a codename never applied to the Federalised MGB, although another source says that it was an all-encompassing programme that did include it.
As ever, we’d like to hear more information…