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MG MG Y Type - Sun Bronze paint help

I am re restoring my 1950 MGTD. When we stripped the paint off back in 1974, we determined the original color was Sun Bronze. We repainted in in cream.

Now the car needs another paint job and I want to take it back to the factory color. Searching the internet for Sun Bronze TD's gives me a variety of bronze colors.

I pulled the color codes from the TD and the Y site and found that PPG 23662, and Ditzler 34759, the codes listed for Sun Bronze, comes back as Amber Brown Poly. THis was a 69 and 72 toyota color, but it does not look like sun bronze.

Any pictures of a sun bronze Y would be appreciated and any information on a current paint code, or what others have used for this color would be very appreciated.
Bruce Cunha

Hi Bruce

I would ask them for 1 pint of it and then have a sprayer paint up a larger piece of steel for you and see how it turns out. Painting a piece of flat metal with the smallest amount of paint possible will be a money saving exercise.

An alternative may be to go to a Toyota shop and ask them if they have/can get a rattle can of touch up paint for you to experiment with too.

Paul Barrow

Thanks Paul. My paint shop said they could mix up a small amount for that purpose.

One issue I am having is that The Y cars I have found on line that say they are Sun Bronze, look nothing like the TD cars I have found that say they are sun bronze.

Here is one of three Y types that I found that all look the same and say the color is sun bronze.

Bruce Cunha

Here is what a TD that is supposed to be Sun Bronze looks like.

As You can see, very different colors.

Will try the PPG formula and see what it looks like.

Bruce Cunha

Hi Bruce

Well all I can tell you is that the MG Ys in Sun Bronze is indeed the correct color for Sun Bronze. The TD (I hate to say it) is way too much copper in the color for Sun Bronze. I have no idea what color the TD is ... but one thing for sure ... it is not MG Sun Bronze from the 1950s.


Paul Barrow

Bruce, on the MG Cars TD Finishes web site: is a list of the colour schemes for the entire production run. Scroll down and you will find an explanation as to why one Sun Bronze is so different to another albeit that both have the same name.
"Apparently MG did not have strict formulas or consistent suppliers for their finishes, so even during the production of the T-Series there would be large discrepancies between cars of the same colour. The cars were also not documented with their colour on an ID plate. This practice did not start until the MGTF model in late 1953."
So if your search for an original Sun Bronze is proving difficult, at least you now know the reason why.
Instead of chasing Sun Bronze around in circles why not simply choose your preferred version and go with that?
R Taylor

Robert. Thanks much for that information. That will save me a bit of work as I have been trying to get a color chip for the Y version of Sun Bronze.

Very interesting that the same name is such a different color.

BTW. I did find that the 1941 Packard also used a color called Sun Bronze. Also different.

I have found two TD's with reported original Sun Bronze paint. One had a color camera scan that came back with a toyota 4R8 paint color. It is bronze, but I will need to have some made up in a metallic to see how it looks on a test panel.

I am going to invest a bit more trying to find a color that might be close to the original, but I think your advice may be where I end up.
Bruce Cunha

hi Bruce, I have a MGY in sun bronze, in fact it is the one in your image photo. If it is the colour you are looking for I have about 1/2 a pint in a tin. on the tin it says VISION REFINISH SYSTEM Colour name, sun bronze,,car manufacture ROVER,, original shade. PRO SPAY NUMBER SU17263SLM ,, CONSTRUCTION YEAR 63/71,,WITHOUT LEAD,,VGL METALIC. Head office, euro colour, 329 LONDON ROAD.HEMEL HEMPSTEAD. HERTS.HP39AL. from documents in the y,s history book the colour took a lot of sourcing. the rebuild and spraying was undertaken by HIGHTONE RESTORATIONS, UNIT 5, ENSTON AIRFEILD, ENSTONE, OXFORDSHIRE, OX7 4NP. ENGLAND. TEL.01608 677328 I hope this info helps you in some way, regards don walker.
dw walker

Don Great information than you very much. I have actually found two MG TD's painted in that color, one was Harry Crutchley's. But the car was rebuilt in 1990 by Steve Baker. I have written to Steve to see if that was the original color.

The other (photo) came up in a dealer in Southern CA. Says
"rare original Sun Bronze" but 1. its a dealer and 2. its a 53, so it should not have sun bronze.

I have found one potential explanation. Chris Cooper lists the color of the dark bronze as Sunburst Bronze. The Y sales brochure and your paint can list the Y color as Sun Bronze.

It is possible these are actually two different colors.

Chris Cooper has searched his ICI paint chips and also asked a friend with a larger set of ICI paint chips and neither has been able to find a Sun Bronze or a Sunburst Bronze.

I also have a friend with all his fathers paint chip books from the 40's and 50's. I am hoping to find the Dupont 34759 paint chip.

Bruce Cunha

Thought I would post an update. I found a Y in Germany that was originally painted in the Sun Bronze. The owner had it resprayed and had the can.
Color was ICI Autocolor, Belco, Sun Bronze, P031-2027.

That number no longer comes up in the auto paint companies computer or in the color chip books. The owner is sending me a small metal strip painted in the color so I can have it scanned.

I have contacted 5 MGTD owners who have TD's painted in the dark brassy bronze. None report this as original paint or a MG sun bronze.

I am now taking apart my TD and looking at the edge of the dash cowl and inside the doors to see if I can find any traces of the original color as my memory is probably not accurate after 45 years since I first restored my TD.

I am hoping to shortly have a definitive answer and hopefully a modern paint code we can use for sun bronze.
Bruce Cunha


If you look at the Colour and Paint Schemes ( you will see I have already quoted 2027M (this is the METALLIC version that was used on MG Ys.

If you then click on the Colour at the top of the column it will take you to where you can get the formula for PPG two part or two pack paint.

The answer has always been there on the IMGYTR site as they are for almost ALL of the official colours for MG Ys.

I apologize if this is not easy to navigate to or intuitive enough for people to find. If anyone has a better idea of how I can get this information to your finger tips please let me know. I try to write pages at a pretty easy level for people to follow and sorry if I am doing a poor job at this. Please send me your suggestions.

Paul Barrow

Thanks Paul

The original question was if there was a different sun bronze for the TD than the Y. Compounding this is that there are a number of TD's that say they are Sun Bronze but are a dark brassy bronze.

There has never been (as far as I can find) a formal conformation on what TD sun bronze was.

I know my car had a bronze original color, but my recollection of it was that it was darker than the Y sun bronze. (but that was 45 years ago and my memory could very well be faulty on the tone of the bronze.

As I mentioned, I have talked to a number of the owners of the darker bronze and they are not original.

So now, I am down to finding something on my TD that gives me the original color. Only the Tub and doors of my TD were not chemically stripped, and the tub and doors were sanded to bare metal. That leaves me with inside the door edges,the cowl edges and the wood behind the gas tank. (this was painted by the PO in an aluminum color, so I plan to wet sand it to see if I can pick up anything around the edges.(

My thinking is the Y color is the correct one. If I dont find anything on my car that indicates a different sun bronze, I will use the PPG formula you provided and paint it in the Y color.
Bruce Cunha

When your TD was done, did you take stuff off the firewall like the junction box for the wiring or the regulator? Often these are not removed so you may find some paint under there you can sample.

Glad you are resolving your quest though and hope our site has been helpful to you.

Paul Barrow

Bruce - coming in late, but if it's any help: my sun bronze '49 Y is mid-restoration, but I cut out the damaged battery box and kept the wall which had the id plate on it. So left behind and definitely original is the revealed sun bronze paint without sun damage, just aged quietly behind the id plate. When I get home tonight I'll attach a photo, but I'm happy to excise the 4-inch part and post it to you if you think it would help at all.
PS - have gone for a nice dark green exterior, green upholstery with slightly darker piping. Hence I don't need sun bronze forensic evidence! Yours, John.
J P Hall

Hi John. I think Pauls answer above gives me the formula for the Y sun bronze that I needed, but thanks for the offer. Once I get the TD torn down and can look for the original color, if I can find any, and it looks similar to the Y sun bronze, I think we will be able to conclude that the Y sun bronze was the same paint used on the TD.

Paul. I had access to a very large machine shop engine hot tank in 1973 when we first restored the TD. Back then, the hot tank used a lye solution that stripped all paint off the metal. All my TD parts that did not have wood in them, including the firewall, went into the tank. They came out perfectly paint free. I am going to build another tank for this restoration as it makes stripping paint down to bare metal so much easier.

(As an FYI, on my TD, when we got the paint stripped off, we found an ink stamp on every metal piece. The stamp was a number, the parts were within a hundred of each other.

So, all I have left to check is the edges of the tub, doors and wood behind the gas tank where I may not have sanded all the old paint away.
Bruce Cunha

Thought I would give you all a bit of the problem I am having trying to see if the TD Sun Bronze was the same as the Y.

This is a headlight can listed on ebay. I actually have bid on this just to see what color it is.

It clearly could have been repainted, but this is exactly the same as TD's that are reported to be sun bronze.

Bruce Cunha

I went to my paint store today. They mixed up and prepared a paint card of PPG 23662. This is the listing Chris Cooper has on his page on this website.

I took in the formula from the Y site. Unfortunately, the numbers do not come up in the US computer for any ppg color.

The Y site says that this color was made in cooperation with PPG. They list a color number of P421-2027M - Sun Bronze This was listed as done in 1995.

My paint store says they have not seen PPG colors with any letters. We tried variations of the number, but none come up as bronze.

I have sent a memo to the Nexa Autocolor web listed on the Y page to try and see if there is a number that will transfer over to the US paint system'

Here is a picture of the ppg 23662 listed as 72 Toyota Amber Brown Poly. The formula is similar but not the same as the formula on the Y site.

This sample does look close to the ICI paint chip I received for Y Sun Bronze, but I still would like to get the PPG color on the Y Site.

Bruce Cunha


If you are able to access the Nexacolor site did you check the listing for Sun Bronze? You will note that it is for the Nexacolor site in the UK and you are in California so your PPG guy MAY need to get the equivalence code numbers for US PPG. There is bound to be a PPG decoder ring.

Also, the formula window does say at the bottom - Provided in partnership with PPG Industries (UK) and the International MG Y Type Register.

Please note that these formulations are correct at the time of issue. Formulations do change from time to time in line with changes in technology. For the very latest up to date colour information please go to and access the Online Colour tool or alternatively contact PPG’S Colour Support helpline on +44 (0)1449 778585.

Have you tried to call the UK phone number listed and talk with them?

Paul Barrow

Havn't tried their number yet Paul. I went to there site and could not find anything related to sun bronze. I did email them and they did send me a response that they will be getting back to me.

I am hoping there is a US equivilent that they can provide. I think the 23662 PPG is close, but having the two side by side is the real only way to tell.

I do have the color plate from the Y in germany that was painted with the ICI sun bronze to use to compare to and can use it for a color match if I don't get anything helpful from PPG.
Bruce Cunha

Got in touch with PPK UK. They said they can;t help but gave me a US contact. So we keep trying.
Bruce Cunha

To give an update and a Thank You.

PPG UK could not help me. The UK paint color system is totally different from the US system. My PPG dealer here in the US cannot use the PPG UK formula codes to make up the paint.

I was referred to PPG US. In my original email, they pretty much blew me off. I have sent them another email pleading for help converting the UK PPG Sun Bronze formula to one that can be mixed in the US.

I do have a ICI Sun Bronze painted metal piece from Walter in Germany.

J.P Hall. Can you send me an email at I would appreciate a piece of your original paint. This will give me two chips to color match and hopefully come up with a paint that can be made in the US.

I have contacted 5 owners of MGTD's painted in the Brass/bronze color. None are original. So, unless different information comes up, I am recommending that the MG TD group accept the MG Y Sun Bronze as the Sun Bronze used on the TD.

Bruce Cunha

No worries Bruce - I'll put up a photo tomorrow just for interest, and prepare a piece with the weathered and unweathered paint vivible, to send you. Yours, John.
J P Hall

I may have to send these separately, but here are a couple of photos of excised battery box and inside door, showing evidence of 100% original Sun Bronze on '49 Y. I'm sending metal to Bruce in the hope that it helps. Regards, John.

J P Hall

Top of door - you can see the insipid green from a p/o; I've gone for a lovely dark rich green from Jaguar.

J P Hall

Thanks J P. The door color photo looks close to the plate Walter sent me from Germany. I am awaiting your post to arrive.

Crossing my fingers that the two are close enough that we can use them to have a color match done.

At this point, I still have not found any TD's that have original Sun Bronze. I am also still disassembling my TD to see if I can find any original paint. Only places it might be in the wood behind the fuel tank (someone painted over the wood with silver, so I am fine sanding it to see if I can get any original paint.

The other areas are under the front edge of the dash and around where the interior pieces fit.

As we hot dipped all the pieces of the car that could come off and did not have wood attached, I don't have a lot of areas to look.

From my tired memory, The Y is looking more and more as what I remember finding on the TD.
Bruce Cunha

J.P. Got the panel. Thanks again. This will help. It is close to the PPG 23362 Paint I had a sample card made up of.

A bit different from the ICI 031-2027 that Walter sent me. Since yours is an actual piece of a car, and from under the ID tag, it probably is the closest to use.
Bruce Cunha

This thread was discussed between 20/11/2017 and 07/02/2018

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