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Nice to meet you, welcome to ado16.info! We were founded in 1999 and have become the world’s largest internet resource for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 range of cars.

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Mozambique Independence Day

Today is Independence Day for the Republic of Mozambique...

...pre independence, during the Portuguese colonial era, the ADO16 did make its way to Mozambique – we picture a couple of images of the old Motel Estoril at Beira, famous for its distinctive wavy shape, and with an interesting collection of cars parked up in front including a Morris 1100.

Today, we are not aware of any ADO16 in Mozambique and would also love to discover more period images of the ADO16 there.

We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join
... See MoreSee Less

Mozambique Independence Day
Today is Independence Day for the Republic of Mozambique...
...pre independence, during the Portuguese colonial era, the ADO16 did make its way to Mozambique – we picture a couple of images of the old Motel Estoril at Beira, famous for its distinctive wavy shape, and with an interesting collection of cars parked up in front including a Morris 1100.
Today, we are not aware of any ADO16 in Mozambique and would also love to discover more period images of the ADO16 there.
We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join

More Competition for the ADO16 – The Simca 1100

Earlier this week we featured the Autobianchi Primula which could have been very serious competition for the ADO16 but it was probably a car too far ahead of its time – the same cannot be said of the Simca 1100 though...

...First appearing in Paris at le Salon de l'Automobile in 1967, the Simca 1100 was advanced in design featuring a hatchback with folding rear seats, disc brakes, rack and pinion steering, an independent front (double wishbone) and rear (trailing arm) suspension using torsion bars. Numerous permutations were available, with a manual, automatic and semi-automatic transmission. The engine was slanted to allow for a lower bonnet; and the engine, gearbox, and suspension were carried on a subframe to allow the body to be relatively unstressed. The body was welded to the front subframe, not bolted.

The Simca 1100 was the result of Project 928, started in 1962 and finalised by engineers Philippe Grundeler and Charles Scales, and the design was a result of market research by Simca in the early sixties which showed the increasing popularity of front wheel drive cars. Both transverse and longitudinal engine placement were tested, and in 1963 the transverse-engine design was approved. Following the Autobianchi Primula the Simca 1100 was one of the first designs to use a transverse engine with an end-on gearbox and (like the ADO16) unequal length driveshafts which are now near-universal amongst small cars – it’s worth remembering that Simca was founded by Fiat and was still a major shareholder with engineering influence when Project 928 first began.

A total of 2.2 million of the Simca 1100 were produced and in Spain production continued through to 1982 nd 1985 for the van version – clearly the Simca was serious front wheel drive competition for the ADO16 and in June 1968, CAR magazine pitted the Simca 1100 GLS against the Morris 1300 Traveller.

We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join
... See MoreSee Less

More Competition for the ADO16 – The Simca 1100
Earlier this week we featured the Autobianchi Primula which could have been very serious competition for the ADO16 but it was probably a car too far ahead of its time – the same cannot be said of the Simca 1100 though...
...First appearing in Paris at le Salon de lAutomobile in 1967, the Simca 1100 was advanced in design featuring a hatchback with folding rear seats, disc brakes, rack and pinion steering, an independent front (double wishbone) and rear (trailing arm) suspension using torsion bars. Numerous permutations were available, with a manual, automatic and semi-automatic transmission. The engine was slanted to allow for a lower bonnet; and the engine, gearbox, and suspension were carried on a subframe to allow the body to be relatively unstressed. The body was welded to the front subframe, not bolted.
The Simca 1100 was the result of Project 928, started in 1962 and finalised by engineers Philippe Grundeler and Charles Scales, and the design was a result of market research by Simca in the early sixties which showed the increasing popularity of front wheel drive cars. Both transverse and longitudinal engine placement were tested, and in 1963 the transverse-engine design was approved. Following the Autobianchi Primula the Simca 1100 was one of the first designs to use a transverse engine with an end-on gearbox and (like the ADO16) unequal length driveshafts which are now near-universal amongst small cars – it’s worth remembering that Simca was founded by Fiat and was still a major shareholder with engineering influence when Project 928 first began.
A total of 2.2 million of the Simca 1100 were produced and in Spain production continued through to 1982 nd 1985 for the van version – clearly the Simca was serious front wheel drive competition for the ADO16 and in June 1968, CAR magazine pitted the Simca 1100 GLS against the Morris 1300 Traveller.
We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join

Comment on Facebook

Had a Simca 1100 in the 80s -loved the high top van but it was pretty agricultural and made of water soluble material....

CAR as blunt as I remember, no hiding place with them. The AA test you posted a few weeks back said the same things about the loadspace and the angle when loaded, that was a bit of a shame

Before buying my new Austin America I had briefly toyed with the idea of a Simca. The dealer network for Simca in the US was practically non-existent compared to BLMC. Who knew that the following year the Austin America would be orphaned in the US after 4 years of sales?

I thought the Simca had north-south engine , ADO16 was east-west 🤔

Michael Palin wrote a nice little piece in his diaries about the merits of his new (in the early 70s) Simca 1100 estate compared to his previous 1300 Estate.

Interesting. They didn't think much to either!

The Simca's rear exterior loosely resembles a mk1 ADO17 which appeared some 3 years prior, more so once the latter in spite of being a larger car received a Crayford Estate conversion that gave it a Simca 1100 like hatchback.

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Luxembourg National Day

Today we celebrate the Monarch’s Day of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (Célébration publique de l'anniversaire du souverain) and feature a car that has a connection with last week’s cover image of a Portuguese MG...

...we don’t know of any sales or marketing history for the ADO16 in Luxembourg and we only know of one car there – an MG 1300 4-door, one of only 3 surviving examples we know of across the world!

Launched in October 1967 the BMC then struggled to produce the model well into 1968 as there were just not enough Mark II 4-door bodies being manufactured, and then in April, 1968 it was discontinued.

This ADO16 is well known in MG circles within Luxembourg – it’s finished in Smoke Grey over Old English White with a Reef Blue interior.

We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join
... See MoreSee Less

Luxembourg National Day
Today we celebrate the Monarch’s Day of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (Célébration publique de lanniversaire du souverain) and feature a car that has a connection with last week’s cover image of a Portuguese MG...
...we don’t know of any sales or marketing history for the ADO16 in Luxembourg and we only know of one car there – an MG 1300 4-door, one of only 3 surviving examples we know of across the world!
Launched in October 1967 the BMC then struggled to produce the model well into 1968 as there were just not enough Mark II 4-door bodies being manufactured, and then in April, 1968 it was discontinued.
This ADO16 is well known in MG circles within Luxembourg – it’s finished in Smoke Grey over Old English White with a Reef Blue interior.
We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join

Comment on Facebook

Looks awesome👌

Morris 1100 2-Door

Looking at the various Autobianchi Primula body styles yesterday some of you questioned the decision making of the BMC but 60-years on it’s not so easy to understand the market demands of 1962 – an estate had been designed at the outset but it wasn’t until 1966 that it was actually launched. The Morris Minor was selling well so why introduce another 2-door car into the Morris range – that said it had been designed and various clues suggest there was debate over whether it should be brought widely to market, in the end it was only produced for export, principally for Denmark as the Morris Marina...

...sadly we’re not aware of any surviving examples.

With thanks to Bo Vincent Petersen.

We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join
... See MoreSee Less

Morris 1100 2-Door
Looking at the various Autobianchi Primula body styles yesterday some of you questioned the decision making of the BMC but 60-years on it’s not so easy to understand the market demands of 1962 – an estate had been designed at the outset but it wasn’t until 1966 that it was actually launched. The Morris Minor was selling well so why introduce another 2-door car into the Morris range – that said it had been designed and various clues suggest there was debate over whether it should be brought widely to market, in the end it was only produced for export, principally for Denmark as the Morris Marina...
...sadly we’re not aware of any surviving examples.
With thanks to Bo Vincent Petersen.
We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join

Comment on Facebook

You're talking purely about Mk1 models of course... As stated Denmark was (more or less) the only country to get a Mk1 Morris 1100 (and Austin 1100) two door. But the Mk2 versions (that appear in a couple of those pictures) were of course sold in very many countries including the UK.

Only remember driving one MK1 but drove a variety of MK2s, 2 door, 4door, mainly 1300s but do recall at least one 1100 2 door that the rep hated because he wanted a Viva like everyone else but his boss made him buy BLMC? We changed it for a nearly new Vauxhall & were left with the 1100 on our hands for quite a while.

A great little car, distinctive style.

Reading these threads about 1100/1300’s must’ve had an affect on me - I dreamed about them last night 🤓🤓

can I ask ? what was the Marina called in Denmark when it was launched?

Looks great 👍

We had a four door back in the early 70s .

My first car in pale blue

Fabulous little car

Sally Pamela Brumfitt did you have one of these?

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Something to Better the ADO16? – Perhaps the Autobianchi Primula

Yesterday we featured footage from the 1964 Turin Motor Show and you may have spotted the Autobianchi Primula...

...the Italian company of Autobianchi was jointly created by Bianchi, Pirelli and Fiat in 1955 – the company only produced only a handful of models which were almost exclusively small cars, they were priced higher than Fiat models of similar size and the brand was used by Fiat to test innovative concepts which later found their way into mainstream Fiat models; those concepts included fibreglass bodies and front-wheel drive and if you consider the Autobianchi Primula you might wonder where it leaves the ADO16.

Dante Giacosa is remembered as one of the most forward-thinking engineers of his era and way ahead of Issigonis, Giacosa actually designed and patented a front-wheel drive drivetrain centered around a transversally mounted engine in 1947 and he believed that the small economy cars of Fiat could be more spacious and better to drive if they switched from the traditional rear-engined/rear-wheel drive configuration to a front-engined/front-wheel drive setup.

No doubt the success of the Mini helped Giacosa to finally convince the stubborn and sceptical Fiat executives – they ruled that the layout would first be tested by Autobianchi; if the concept failed it wouldn’t be directly associated with the Fiat name!

Learning from the issues the Mini faced, and so too the growing in popularity ADO16, Giacosa and his team quickly got to work on designing the Primula with the transmission mounted in-line with the engine – a setup that is commonly found in virtually all types of cars today.

The Primula was introduced in 1964 with the 1221cc 4-cylinder engine used in the Fiat 1100 D, it had a 4-speed manual transmission that used an hydraulic clutch in order to reduce the size of the bellhousing and fit the drivetrain transversally. The Primula featured disc brakes all-round and was initially launched as a 4-door saloon but was soon joined by a 2-door saloon, and both 3 and 5-door hatchbacks and even a coupe with a sleek roofline.

Italian buyers never really warmed to the Primula, remaining faithful to rear-engined cars but it was successful in France where attitudes to front wheel drive were very different. However, it was a relatively expensive car to purchase and was discontinued in 1970 after about 75,000 examples had been built.

Certainly compared to the ADO16 the Primula was hardly a commercial success but it was a hugely significant car for Fiat, setting the mould for nearly all of the company’s cars ever since – it’s even been tagged the most important car you’ve never heard of. No doubt many of you will look at our images of the Primula and see many similarities with the ADO16, and probably also ask if the BMC should have offered the same body styles – all we’ll say is that many cars are produced ahead of their time.

With thanks to Ronan Glon.

We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join
... See MoreSee Less

Something to Better the ADO16? – Perhaps the Autobianchi Primula
Yesterday we featured footage from the 1964 Turin Motor Show and you may have spotted the Autobianchi Primula...
...the Italian company of  Autobianchi was jointly created by Bianchi, Pirelli and Fiat in 1955 – the company only produced only a handful of models which were almost exclusively small cars, they were priced higher than Fiat models of similar size and the brand was used by Fiat to test innovative concepts which later found their way into mainstream Fiat models; those concepts included fibreglass bodies and front-wheel drive and if you consider the Autobianchi Primula you might wonder where it leaves the ADO16.
Dante Giacosa is remembered as one of the most forward-thinking engineers of his era and way ahead of Issigonis, Giacosa actually designed and patented a front-wheel drive drivetrain centered around a transversally mounted engine in 1947 and he believed that the small economy cars of Fiat could be more spacious and better to drive if they switched from the traditional rear-engined/rear-wheel drive configuration to a front-engined/front-wheel drive setup. 
No doubt the success of the Mini helped Giacosa to finally convince the stubborn and sceptical Fiat executives – they ruled that the layout would first be tested by Autobianchi; if the concept failed it wouldn’t be directly associated with the Fiat name!
Learning from the issues the Mini faced, and so too the growing in popularity ADO16, Giacosa and his team quickly got to work on designing the Primula with the transmission mounted in-line with the engine – a setup that is commonly found in virtually all types of cars today.
The Primula was introduced in 1964 with the 1221cc 4-cylinder engine used in the Fiat 1100 D, it had a 4-speed manual transmission that used an hydraulic clutch in order to reduce the size of the bellhousing and fit the drivetrain transversally. The Primula featured disc brakes all-round and was initially launched as a 4-door saloon but was soon joined by a 2-door saloon, and both 3 and 5-door hatchbacks and even a coupe with a sleek roofline. 
Italian buyers never really warmed to the Primula, remaining faithful to rear-engined cars but it was successful in France where attitudes to front wheel drive were very different. However, it was a relatively expensive car to purchase and was discontinued in 1970 after about 75,000 examples had been built.
Certainly compared to the ADO16 the Primula was hardly a commercial success but it was a hugely significant car for Fiat, setting the mould for nearly all of the company’s cars ever since – it’s even been tagged the most important car you’ve never heard of. No doubt many of you will look at our images of the Primula and see many similarities with  the ADO16, and probably also ask if the BMC should have offered the same body styles – all we’ll say is that many cars are produced ahead of their time.
With thanks to Ronan Glon.
We’re the global umbrella for the ADO16, the BMC/British Leyland 1100/1300 – in well over 60 countries and with a Facebook Group approaching 3,000 members! You can join us too; the only ADO16 club with a FREE membership level: www.ado16.info/membership-join

Comment on Facebook

Not a succesful car in Italy, better in French. Learned to drive on my father's Primula 65 C, or Mk2 as English say. Brilliant, but thirsty at speed. Family car from 1970 to 1977, it followed a nice Innocenti J4 in light grey.

Excellent article

Looks 😁

One of the reasons Fiat were said to have been reluctant to embrace FWD was because of a pre-war incident where a competing economy car prototype with such a layout by Oreste Lardone caught fire, with Giovanni Agnelli being a passenger that day who promptly chose Giacosa's proposal instead for what became the Topolino.

The funny thing is that Issigonis before he moved to Alvis actually developed a transverse engined front-wheel drive Minor prototype with a transmission mounted in-line with the engine. Was also of the impression ADO16 as well as ADO17 had more than enough room in their engine bays to accommodate the same set-up.

Patrick Hink

Autobianchi Club Nederland

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