Used car buying guide: MG ZR

Although production ceased 15 years ago, you can still buy an MG ZR with delivery mileage and only the supplying dealer’s name in the log book. You’ll have to be quick, though, because just three of them remain unsold.

One such example is with Hursley Hill SMG in Bristol. It’s an independent garage now but it was once one of Rover’s most successful dealerships. When the car maker was approaching collapse, SMG bought from it 300 factory-fresh MG Rovers of all types, and in the years since then it has been steadily making its way through them.

Its ZR is one of the last. The 2004-registered model has done just 91 miles, or about the distance from the MG Rover factory at Longbridge to Bristol. It’s been in storage ever since. It’s a ZR 1.8 120 and costs £6995, making it one of the most expensive ZRs in the country.

It’s bound to be snapped up by a collector. The fact is, despite history looking more kindly on more accomplished rivals, including the Renault Sport Clio 172 and 182, the MG ZR stills inspires affection.

MG ZR 160 1.8 VVC, 2005- reg, 77K miles, £1950: Private-sale car is a lovely example of the quicker 160 version with full service history and a new cambelt, brakes all round and an OE twin-pipe silencer. Has just had a major service, too. Only spoiled by a couple of small rust outbreaks on the front wings.