Our Video of the Week for this first week of June features another, and first of the well known, designs that took place under the leadership of Alec Issigonis. This is the story of the Morris Minor. Over one-and-a-half million Minors were produced between 1948 and 1972. Initially available only as a two-door saloon and convertible, the range was quickly expanded to include a four-door saloon in 1950, a wood-framed estate (the Traveller) in October 1953, and panel van and pick-up truck variants from May of 1953. It was the first British car to sell over one million units and is considered a classic example of automotive design, as well as typifying “Englishness”. Eric Lord, the director of Morris Motors, said that Lord Nuffield thought that the new Morris Minor looked like a poached egg and that the car was narrow […]
Let’s look at Minis. Our Video of the Week this week is a brief history of the Mini Cooper. And in this case, we mean the class Mini Cooper, not the more modern version from BMW. The video comes from the guys over at Donut Media and is, shall we say, irreverent. To quote Donut: It’s the most Iconic British car of all time: The Mini. It was an engineering marvel that revolutionized economy car design and became a motorsport legend along the way. Join us as we explore the Mini’s rich history and design quirks that made it one of the best selling cars in the U.K.
Jon Pressnell, a well-known writer and researcher of the British motor industry has written a comprehensive book on the Morris automobile and the company that produced them. Morris – The Cars and the Company was published in 2013. This 286-page large format hardbound book is a definitive study on the Morris cars from the very beginning all the way to the last of the British Leyland days and the final Morris marque product, the Harris Mann designed wedge-shaped 1800 and the restyle of the Morris Marina into the Ital. The Morris Marina was sold in the USA and Canada from about 1973 to 1976 as the Austin Marina. This book is highly detailed with considerable research done on the early, mid and late years of Morris car production. There are voluminous photographs, both in color and black and white, to illustrate […]
Recent research by leading UK classic car insurer, ClassicLine has revealed that a number once-popular British classic cars are facing an extinction crisis. The list of top ten most endangered cars in Britain has been published by the insurance specialists as part of its new ‘Save our Classics’ campaign.
The British Motor Corporation’s (BMC) 1100 and 1300 model range was amongst the most successful in the Corporation’s history, selling more than 2.1 million of all types between its introduction in 1962 and its demise in 1974. Worldwide, the BMC 1100 was sold under eight different marque names and in two-door saloon, four-door saloon, two-door estate, and five-door hatchback forms – and very nearly as a van as well. In Britain, it was the country’s best-selling car between 1962 and 1971, being beaten just once (in 1967) by the Ford Cortina. The BMC 1100 and 1300: An Enthusiasts Guide by James Taylor looks at the design and development of a model range that at the time confirmed BMC as a pioneer of new automotive ideas and had a profound impact on other manufacturers. It covers not only the full standard […]
Collectors and enthusiasts turned out in force when BCA Blackbushe offered two classic British cars on Wednesday 14th October. Both the 1957 Morris Minor and the 1960 Ford Prefect had generated a lot of pre-sale interest and there was some very competitive bidding both in the auction hall and online as the cars were offered. The Morris Minor had only been sold once before, at BCA’s former Frimley centre in 1980 when it realised £680. Thirty-five years later it made over four times that value, selling for £2,850. The two-owner Morris was in need of some gentle renovation to return to its former glory and came with a number of original spares including a pair of boxed ‘as new’ Lucas semaphore indicators, Morris badges, carpets, new floor panels, chrome overriders and a complete set of spare wheels. The beautifully restored […]
Our video this week is from deep in the vaults for something a little more esoteric – a brief history of the Morris Oxford and Wolseley Fifteen-hundred. These fantastic old cars were two of the stalwarts of the British automotive industry in their day. The Morris Oxford is a series of car models produced by Morris Motors in many different forms. Although the name was used from the 1913 bullnose Oxford to the Farina Oxfords V and VI of the 70s, the cars being referred to in this video are the models produced from 1948 and up until 1959. Those interested in the Morris Oxford should check out the Cambridge Oxford Owners Club as well as the Morris Oxford site. The Wolseley 1500 was first introduced in 1957. The Wolseley 1500 was produced at Longbridge with a detuned version of […]
British comedy, who doesn’t love it? Well, maybe a few people don’t, but there is no accounting for them. From Monty Python and Fawlty Towers to Graham Norton and Wallace and Gromit, British comedy just seems to hit the funny bone of those of us with British cars head on. So, in the vein of British humor, or Video of the Week, VotW, this time is an ad for British Leyland by “The Two Ronnies“. The Two Ronnies wass a BBC television comedy sketch show created by Bill Cotton for the BBC, which aired on BBC1 from 1971 to 1987. It featured the double act of Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett, the “Two Ronnies” of the title. The advertisement for the Austin Morris range of cars, including the Mini, the Marina, and the Allegro, is titled ‘The Great Range’ and […]
The one millionth Morris Minor car ever built has been sold at an auction for 25,760 pounds. The classic British-built car was sold earlier at the Surrey auction house, Historics at Brooklands. It was one of 349 “millionth” Morris Minors built in 1960, however, this car was the actual one millionth built. Stewart Banks, from Historics, said there had been an “awful lot of interest” in the car, which had an estimate of between 22,000 to 26,000 pounds. “There were 349 made but this is the only one with the million mark on its chassis. The Morris Minor has a very loyal fan base – people have them for years. This particular car has been owned by the vendor for 19 years,” Banks was quoted as saying by the BBC. “It is just the quintessential British motor car.” The “millionth” […]
With all this talk of the Geneva Motor Show and all the focus on nice new shiny, not to mention expensive, cars, some of us may be feeling a little left out. What if you can’t afford to get on the waiting list for one of the new Morgans? Or what if you desire the Bentley EXP 10 Speed Six but just live a few too many miles away from the dealership to make those regularly scheduled oil changes convenient. Well then, do we have a solution for you. Not only will our proposed solution net you a car you can afford, but it is recyclable and can even be made from recycled materials itself. Of course, there is the problem of there being no engine and no way to actually use the car for any practical purpose, but at least […]