Posts Tagged ‘British cars’


The fourth Anglia model, the 105E, was introduced in 1959. Its American-influenced styling included a sweeping nose line, and on deluxe versions, a full-width slanted chrome grille in between prominent "eye" headlamps. (Basic Anglias featured a narrower, painted grille.) Its smoothly sloped line there looked more like a 1950s Studebaker (or even early Ford Thunderbird) than the more aggressive-looking late-’50s American Fords, possibly because its British designers used wind-tunnel testing and streamlining. Like late-’50s Lincolns and Mercurys and the Citroën Ami of France, the car sported a backward-slanted rear window (so that it would remain clear in rain, according to contemporary marketing claims).


In fact, this look was imported from the 1958 Lincoln Continental, where it had been the accidental result of a design specification for an electrically opening a121288_anglia_03(breezeway) rear window. As well as being used, by Ford, on the Consul Classic, this look was also copied by Bond, Reliant and Invacar, for their three wheelers. The resulting flat roofline gave it excellent rear headroom. It had muted tailfins, much toned-down from its American counterparts. An estate car joined the saloon in the line-up in September 1961. The instrument panel had a red light for the generator and a green one for the oil pressure.

The new styling was matched by a new engine, something that the smaller Fords had been needing for some time—a 997 cc overhead valve (OHV), straight-4 with an oversquare cylinder bore, that became known by its "Kent" code name. Acceleration from rest was still sluggish (by the standards of today), but it was much improved from earlier cars. Also new for British Fords was a four-speed (manual) gearbox with synchromesh on the top three forward ratios: this was replaced by an all-synchromesh box in September 1962 (on 1198 powered cars). The notoriously feeble vacuum-powered windscreen wiper set-up of earlier Anglias was replaced with (by now) more conventional windscreen wipers powered by their own electric motor. The Macpherson strut independent front suspension used on the 100E was retained.


In October 1962, twenty-four-year-old Tony Brookes (see also Ford Corsair GT) and a group of friends took a private Anglia 105E fitted with the £13 Ford Performance Kit to Montlhèry Autodrome near Paris and captured six International Class G World Records averaging 83.47 mph (134.33 km/h). These a121288_anglia_05were 4,5,6 and 7 days and nights and 15,000, and 20,000 kilometres. The Anglia’s strength and durability meant that no repairs were required whatsoever other than tyre changes.

The car’s commercial success has subsequently been overshadowed by the even greater sales achieved by theCortina: in 1960, when 191,752 Anglias left Ford’s Dagenham plant in the 105E’s first full production year, it set a new production-volume record for the Ford Motor Company. From October 1963, production continued at Ford’s new Halewood plant at Merseyside alongside the newly introduced Corsair models. The Anglia Super introduced in September 1962 for the 1963 model year shared the longer stroke 1198 cc version of the Ford Kent 997 cc engine of the newly introduced Ford Cortina. The Anglia Super was distinguished by its painted contrasting-coloured side stripe.


A new Anglia saloon tested by the British Motor magazine in 1959 had a top speed of 73.8 mph (118.8 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 26.9 seconds. A fuel consumption of 41.2 miles per imperial gallon (6.86 L/100 km; 34.3 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £610 including taxes of £180.


The old 100E Anglia became the new 100E Popular and the four-door Prefect bodyshell remained available as the new Ford Prefect (107E) which had all 105E running gear, including engine and brakes, while the 100E Escort and Squire remained available, unchanged. In 1961 the Escort and Squire were replaced by the 105E Anglia estate. Both cars are popular with hot rodders to this day, helped by the interchangeability of parts and the car’s tuning potential. The 100E delivery van also gave way to a new vehicle based on the 105E. Identical to the Anglia 105E back to the B post, the rest of the vehicle was entirely new.


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The Bamby first appeared in Hull (UK) in 1983 and was designed and built by Alan Evans. Being a keen Bubble car enthusiast Evans’s created the Bamby after being made redundant from a building firm in 1982. The vehicle was a single seater with a fibreglass body that had a single gull-wing type door.  It was powered by an air cooled, single cylinder  50cc Yamaha engine. Production ceased in 1985


Text from 3wheelers.com

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The Riley One-Point-Five and similar Wolseley 1500 were motor vehicles based on the Morris Minor floorpan, suspension and steering but fitted with the larger 1489 cc B-Series engine and MG Magnette gearbox. Launched in 1957, the twins were differentiated by nearly 20 hp (15 kW), the Riley having twin SU carburettors giving it the most power at 68 hp (50 kW). The Wolseley was released in April of that year, while the Riley appeared in November, directly after the 1957 London Motor Show.


The Series II model came out in May 1960. The most notable external difference was the hidden boot and bonnet hinges. Interior storage was improved with the fitting of a full width parcel shelf directly beneath the fascia.

The Series III launched in October 1961, featuring revisions to the grille and rear lights.

In October 1962 the car received the more robust crank, bearing and other details of the larger 1,622 cc unit now being fitted in the Austin Cambridge and its "Farina" styled clones. Unlike the Farina models, however, the Wolseley 1500 and Riley one-point-five retained the 1,489 cc engine size with which they had been launched back in 1957.

Production ended in 1965 with 39,568 Rileys and 103,394 Wolseleys made.



The One-Point-Five and its 1500 sibling had a number of differences, with the Wolseley generally being the less well-equipped model:

  • 887_wolsley_08Engine – The Riley benefited from dual SU H4 carburettors while the Wolseley received only one.
  • Exterior – The front panel and grille looks similar on both cars, but is different. The stainless trim along the side of the cars is different, as well, as are the headlamp surrounds.
  • Dashboard – Both cars received wooden dashboards. While the Riley had a full complement of gauges (speedometer, tachometer, and temp/oil/fuel) placed directly in front of the driver, the Wolseley made do with only the speedometer and temp/oil/fuel gauges, which were placed in the centre of the dashboard.
  • Brakes – The Riley was equipped with a larger Girling braking system, while the Wolseley received a smaller Lockheed system. The Girling brakes on the Riley One-Point-Five were often sought out by Morris Minor owners looking a way to upgrade their brakes.


In its day the Riley was successfully raced and rallied and can still be seen today in historical sporting events.


A Wolseley 1500 was tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1957. It was found to have a top speed of 76.7 mph (123.4 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 24.8 seconds. A fuel consumption of 36.6 miles per imperial gallon (7.7 L/100 km; 30.5 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £758 including taxes of £253.

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In August 1959, Mr C. J. Wright a Wolverhampton business man with garage and haulage interests, bought the stock, jigs, tools, fixtures and fittings, along with the rights to manufacture and the trade name of Frisky from the Official Receiver. He formed a new company Frisky Cars (1959) Ltd. and he and E F Wright became directors. A Mr G A Stuart was made general Manager. The 753_frisky_02company announced that they hoped to restart production in September at Fallings Park with a target of 30 three-wheeled cars a week, also that a deluxe version would follow and that it was hoped the Friskysprint would be built later. Also announced was the intention to build a new production plant on a 30-acre (120,000 m2) site in Penkridge but this never happened.

In September 1959 a new version of the Family Three was announced. The Frisky Family Three Mk2, dropped the MacPherson strut front suspension of the original car replacing it with the Dubonnet system used on the Friskysport. The chassis was lengthened to allow the engine to be moved back out of the cabin and it was now offered with the choice of either a 250 cc (15 cu in) or 328 cc (20.0 cu in) Excelsior Talisman twin engines giving the advantage of an Albion gearbox with a true reverse gear. Twin front seats replaced the original bench seats and production commenced in early 1960.

753_frisky_04In October 1960, a new model, The Frisky Prince was shown at the Earls Court Motor Show. This was basically a re-bodied Family Three with front hung doors. Around the same time, a deal was done with a company called Middlesbrough Motorcraft and kits to build your own Frisky became available from them. Anthony Brindle, who had become joint managing director of Frisky Cars took part in a publicity run attempting to visit five European capitals, Paris, Luxembourg, Brussels, Amsterdam and London not spending more than £5 on fuel.

A four-wheel version of the Prince was announced for 1961 but never reached production.

Text from Wikipedia

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Round the same time as the Mark B was launched, work had begun on what was referred to subsequently as a "streamlined version" of the Minicar. Badged as the ‘ESC’ (England’s Smallest Car), this prototype utilised the main body and rear suspension of the Mark B, but added mock front wings, a passenger side door and a valance beneath its oval-shaped grille.

784_Bond Minicar Mk C_01

By the time of the Earl’s Court Cycle and Motor Cycle Show in November 1951, several pre-production Mark Cs were on show. On these the front wings had become longer and less triangular in profile than the ‘ESC’, the grille was also lower and more rounded and the front valance was now a more defined bumper shape. The new Minicar design was very well received, and was due to go on sale in early 1952. By July however, "owing to supply difficulties" it was still unavailable, and the earliest production cars were not recorded as being built until October 1952. Four of the cars were on display at that year’s show along with a Sharp’s Minivan.

784_Bond Minicar Mk C_03

The change in the body style from the Mark B was both functional and aesthetic. The Mark C utilised the same 180° steering lock and worm and sector steering system that was seen in the prototype Commercial and the front wings allowed for ample clearance at full lock. They also addressed a demand from customers for a "greater smoothness of line", and allowed a more robust location for the mounting of the front lights. Other improvements included rod and cable operated brakes on all three wheels, which "appreciably shortens stopping distances."

784_Bond Minicar Mk C_02

During development, the Mark C had utilised the same sliding pillar suspension on the rear as the Mark B, but by September 1952, this had been changed for Flexitor suspension units produced by George Spencer Moulton & Co. Ltd. The Flexitor units were a type of lever arm shock absorber which used bonded rubber in torsion as the shock absorber. On these units a stub axle is mounted upon a trailing-arm with the pivot point being a steel rod. This rod is bonded inside a rubber tube which runs through and is also bonded to an external steel housing. The housing is bolted to the underside of the car. The units provide about 3 in (76 mm) of vertical movement to each independent rear axle.

The engine mounting was substantially different. Instead of being suspended from an alloy cradle as on the Mark A and B, the engine now sat in a steel cradle bolted to a steeply inclined steel tube that pivoted directly behind the engine through an alloy steering head bracket. This bracket, holding the engine and front wheel unit is bolted to a cast alloy bulkhead which forms a major structural component of the car. The engine mounting was said to have been a regular source of failures on both the Mark A and the Mark B, and this new design was again the work of Granville Bradshaw.

784_Bond Minicar Mk C_05

The single side door, which had been introduced to around 6 1/2 % of Mark B production vehicles after November 1951, became a standard fixture on the Mark C. Because the car’s monocoque construction depended principally upon its skin for rigidity, the size of door was severely limited and to overcome the resulting decrease in structural rigidity, vertical steel strengthening brackets were fitted either side and along the bottom edge of the door aperture.

By January 1953, some cars were being fitted with fibreglass rear wings. Bonnets in fibreglass followed soon after, but these were not used on production vehicles until December 1954. The production cost of the fibreglass parts was about the same as those of aluminium, but the parts were said to be both lighter and stronge.

Text from Wikipedia

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The original P4, the model 75, arrived in 1949. It featured controversial modern styling which contrasted with the out-dated Rover P3 which it replaced, and which was heavily based on the bullet-nosed Studebakers of the same era. The turning circle was 37 feet (11 m). One particularly unusual feature was the centrally mounted headlight in the grille. Known as the "Cyclops eye", it was removed after 1952.

Power came from a 2.1 L (2103 cc/128 in³) Rover IOE straight-6 engine. A four-speed manual transmission was used with a column-mounted shifter at first and floor-mounted unit from 1954.

A car tested by The Motor magazine in 1949 had a top speed of 83.5 mph (134.4 km/h) and could accelerate from 0–60 mph (97 km/h) in 21.6 seconds. A fuel consumption of 27.8 miles per imperial gallon (10.2 L/100 km; 23.1 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £1106 including taxes.

Production of this original model ended in 1954 with 33,267 sold.

The P4 Seventy Five Mark II

An updated P4 75 arrived in 1954 with some styling changes. A three-piece wraparound rear window was used, but the 2.1 litres (130 cu in) IOE engine continued. This model was updated again in 1955 with a larger 2.2 L (2230 cc/136 in³) version of the IOE engine. Overdrive became an option from 1956. In 1957, it was restyled, along with the rest of the P4 line, with a new grille and wings. Production ended in 1959 with the introduction of the P4 100.

The Seventy-Five was reborn in 1999

This Rover 75 is a compact executive car produced by British automobile manufacturers Rover Group and later by MG Rover, under the Rover marque. The Rover 75 was available with front-wheel drive in either a saloon or estate body style and latterly, in long-wheelbase form and a rear-wheel drive, V8-engined specification. In 2001, an MG-branded version was launched by MG Rover, called the MG ZT.

The Rover 75s were built by the Rover Group under BMW at Cowley, Oxfordshire, for just a year. After Rover Group’s sale, the Rover 75 was built by MG Rover Group at their Longbridge site in Birmingham.

The Rover 75 was unveiled to the public at the 1998 Birmingham Motor Show, with deliveries commencing in February 1999. Production of the Rover and later MG badged models ceased on 8 April 2005 when manufacturer MG Rover Group entered administration. Rather surprisingly, it was offered for sale in Mexico, making it the first Rover to be sold in North America since the Sterling.

Text from Wikipedia

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Around my neck of the wood there hasn’t been much snow this winter yet, but when it comes I’d love a rig like this to clear it away – Ted
Image found at “Timeless Transport

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You can paint it what ever colour you like, ad what extras you can find, a Mini will always be a Mini. Sir Alec Issigonis designed a car so distinct in feature and so popular that it became an icon of a whole decade. It became as great a part of Britain in the sixties as the Beatles, Twiggy and mini skirts.

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The Rover P5B

If it’s good enough for Her Majesty
The Queen loved them so much she’s owned two; the British Government so much so that they mothballed a batch of them for special occasions during the 1980’s. I’ve wanted one since I was four, Matchbox model in hand, yelling wheel screeches across the kitchen lino.

Forget your Jaguars, Bentleys or Rollers. The Rover P5B was the daddy of British luxury cars in the late 60’s. Text and suggested video from “Once was England

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The first car I and my sister ever drove was a 1962 Ford Consul Classic 315 and it was the first new car my family had. It looked just like this one, lime green with a pearl white roof, but our was a 4 door version. When my father bought a new Volvo my sister got the Ford, she was four years older than me. By the time it was my turn the Macpherson struts had made most of the front rust right through and it was scrapped – Ted

The Ford Consul Classic or ‘Consul 315’ (as the export version was known) was a mid-sized car built by Ford in the UK from 1961 to 1963. Available with two or four doors, in Standard or De Luxe versions, with floor or column gearshift. It is commonly referred to as the Ford 109E , though four such codes are possible as explained below. Obvious competitor models at the time included the Hillman Minx and Singer Gazelle from Rootes group.

Ford Classic model codes
The Classic (and related Consul Capri) had the Right Hand Drive and home market Ford code of 109E (but 110E if L.H.D.) for 1961–1962 models with 1340cc engines, or 116E (but 117E for L.H.D.) for 1962–1963 manufacture with 1500cc engines. Those codes also distinguish the gearboxes and steering components which are not greasable on later cars, so cutting first-user servicing costs. Despite all these codes the cars all looked the same throughout production 1961–1963, the visual distinctions being the number of doors, the trim & equipment level between Standard and De Luxe and their exciting choice of colours.


Concept and Development
The Classic was a quality model by Ford "suitable for the golf club car park" originally intended for introduction earlier and deletion later than actually occurred. The styling exercises were mainly undertaken in 1956 under Colin Neale. The main styling cues came straight from Dearborn, as they so often did, defining the car as a scaled down Galaxie 500, from the waist down, topped with a Lincoln Continental roofline. Other aspects of R&D followed, and it is likely a recognisably similar car could have been introduced in 1959 subject to different senior management decisions. In practice the run-away early success of Anglia (1959 on) used up most of the car manufacturing capacity at Dagenham vindicating the decision to compete against the BMC Mini. (The Halewood plant did not open until 1963.) Ford therefore entered the 1960s with the small Anglia , Popular and Prefect , the big "three graces" launched back in 1956, and NOT the mid-size market Classic.


The Ford Classic was similar in appearance to the more popular Ford Anglia, featuring the same distinctive reverse-rake rear window. This feature was imported from the 1958 Lincoln Continental where it was necessitated by the design requirement for an opening (breezway) rear window. With quad headlamps and different frontal treatment it was longer, wider and so heavier than the Anglia. In fact, from the windows down the body design was a scaled down version of Ford’s huge, US Ford Galaxie. Inside, the separate front seats and rear bench had a standard covering of PVC but leather was available as an option. There was a choice of floor or column mounted gear change. Single or two-tone paint schemes were offered. Several of the car’s features, unusual at the time, have subsequently become mainstream such as the headlight flasher ("found on many Continental cars") and the variable speed windscreen wipers. The boot or trunk capacity was exceptionally large, with a side stowed spare wheel well, and more important the huge high lift sprung lid allowed a great variety of loads to be both contemplated and packed. At 21cu.ft this was 15% larger than Zodiac mk2 and had obvious advantages for business use.

The Consul Classic was also mechanically similar to the Anglia, and used slightly larger 1340 cc and from 1962 1498 cc variants of the Ford Kent Engine. The car had front 9.5 in (241 mm) disc brakes and was fitted with a four speed gearbox: early cars provided synchromesh on the top three ratios, while the arrival of the 1498cc version coincided with the provision of synchromesh on all forward gears. Suspension was independent at the front using Macpherson strut units and at the rear the live axle used semi elliptic leaf springs. A contemporary road tester was impressed, noting that "probably the most impressive thing about the Classic is its road holding".

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The Austin A90 Atlantic was a British car produced by the Austin Motor Company, launched initially as a sporting four seat convertible. It made its début at the 1948 Earls Court Motor Show in London, with production models built between spring 1949 and late 1950. The two-door sports coupé followed a year later; it had been previewed at the 1949 Motor Show and was in production at Longbridge between 1950 and 1952.

Read all about the Atlantic at our article series “European Car History

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One of just very few XKs sent to independent coachbuilder to be fitted with a custom body. It is one of three XK120s sent to Ghia in 1954 to be equipped with the Supersonic style coachwork penned by Giovanni Savonuzzi and first seen on an Alfa Romeo and multiple Fiat 8Vs. A quick look at the car will reveal why the design received the Supersonic name; it’s a good reflection of the jet-obsession of the day. The beauty of many great things is in the details and in this case the 32-piece ‘after-burner’ taillights a second look. While Ghia was busy fitting the body, the engine was sent to specialist Conrero, who replaced the two SUs with three Webers with a considerable boost in power as a result.

Upon completion the three cars were set to be displayed together at the Cannes Concours d’Elegance. Jaguar was not too happy with the sexual implication of the license plate of the pictured car and it was shown in Cannes with 66-BJ-75 as the number plate instead of the 69-BJ-75 originally fitted.

Shortly after the car was stored because its owner was involved in legal and financial issues and carefully hid the car, so his creditors could not get their hands on it. After many years it resurfaced and it has been completely restored in 1990s. Still in excellent condition, it seen here at the 2006 Retromobile.


Image and text found at:Ultimatecarpage

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