Thanks everyone, yes it seems such a dilemma as I was not expecting it to be that nice. Not sure how such a nice car was found but I guess the workshop has its contacts.
Yes the Frontline Abingdon in the UK is extremely expensive, however in Australia the car with 2.0L 210bhp engine, 6 speed gearbox, heated seats and air-conditioning will work out less than a new 4/4 was last year before Morgan Australia closed its doors. Still expensive (especially compared to other cars) but probably half the price it is compared to the UK. I think of the Frontline Abingdon as a 2.5L roadster so I guess with the 2.0L engine mine is not 100% one, Modern Classic Cars which is the Australian Frontline supplier/partner or something related calls their cars the Abingdon Edition AU regardless of the engine.
The plan is that Modern Classic Cars sources a donor car that has a reasonable body with as little rust as possible, buys it on my behalf and supplies me with all the paper work from the previous owner to get registered. Then once it is registered in my name they pick it up and strip it. Last week they told me they found a suitable donor, will drop it off on Thursday the 14th the pick it up around the 27th or 28th ready for them to start on Monday the 1st of June. In the meantime all I had to do was arrange it to be inspected and registered in my name, have some fun driving it and make sure I leave it pretty empty of petrol.
The car turns up and I am expecting some hopefully un-rusty but basically worn out car. The bad news is I had hoped it had some registration on it but it has historic registration that can't be transferred and I doubt I can get an inspection until end of next week, meaning assuming it passes I can't organise the paper work with the coronavirus delays causing short hours at the governemnt shop front until early the week starting the 25th, so maybe only a day or two to drive it before it is supposed to be taken away
The good news is it seems like a really good car, the previous owner used it for historic racing, the motor sounds very lumpy but rather nice, the paint is pretty good and I can't see much body damage at all- just a few small dint's here and there. The previous owner wanted to keep the roll cage, racing seats and hard top so Modern Classic Cars have put some seats in from another donor car, removed the headlight covers, tow hooks and bonnet strap, gave it a good clean underneath so hopefully it will pass the road worthy. I am a bit confused why would someone sell a car that looks so good but want to keep some of the racing parts.
So what a dilemma, I think it looks great as it is, it certainly sounded great for the 100 metres it was driven up the driveway, I started it this morning to move it as a TV repair man was coming and I wanted to give him good access for his van (well that is my excuse
). It started OK, went nicely into both first and reverse and clutch felt good. But when I mentioned to she who must be obeyed that I like it as it is she said (in that don't argue tone) it has to go back to become green, with air-conditioning and a new Mazda engine that won't smell of petrol like that engine does.