Late-model MGBs had overdrive rather than a fifth gear. You can put the car into overdrive in 3rd or 4th and the engine produces less torque, but hopefully saves you petrol and reduces engine wear and noise.

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  1. Evie Mellor said on 28 Jan 2012:

    i need advice! i have an mgb gt 1980 and i also had this gear stick like all :) i was told the late versions wernt really fitted with the overdrive as the wire caused eletrical failure :( so i believed that mine wasnt fitted. I was reading through the previouse owners mechanic bills and it seem that there is purchases for a l/h overdrive part for 139.00 and another part for 112.00. Now common sense kicked in and i though well if i didnt have the overdrive the owner would be purchasing thses parts! inm not sure what these parts are and this is when i need advise! thank you :) Evie
  2. Adam said on 7 Feb 2012:

    If it's a 1980 it'll have come with an overdrive as they were standard from 1975, if your gearstick has the overdrive (OD) switch on it, that just confirms it. It may be that the OD unit has failed at some point which is why the previous owner bought the parts. It's definitely worth getting it fixed, driving at anything above 50mph is noisy without it!