On the stand

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1964, Austin 1100

“Look – It’s an Austin 1100!” Certainly in the UK many owners of the badge engineered versions of the ADO16 will have heard that said about their car, after all popular belief has it that ADO was the Austin Drawing Office, nonetheless the ADO16 provides a lesson in badge engineering but today’s market forces result in a highly skewed view of what the car really was all about; the real celebration of the ADO16 lies in the base models.

Alan and his father are the second owners of this Austin 1100, having pulled it out of a garage in 2012 where it had sat since 1978 having only covered 32,000 miles. The initial restoration was finished in 2014 just in time to celebrate the cars 50th Birthday. Alan’s father drove the car from Sussex to Birmingham to attend the Pride of Longbridge event. It’s worth noting that this was the cars first major journey in over 35 years!

As you can imagine there’s always something that needs to be done on car that is enjoyed and driven regularly, and at the Practical Classics Classic Car & Restoration Show a few years ago the car was treated to a new dynamiter and electronic ignition system.

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1965, Morris 1100 MkI

Launched to the public on the 15th August, 1962, the first version of the ADO16 was the Morris 1100 – it was the creation of Sir Alec Issigonis whose original vision was for a trio of family cars; the Mini would be the Town car, small and easy to park, the City car would be the ADO16, whilst what became the 1800 would be the Motorway car – all would feature a wheel at each corner and a transverse engine with running gear mounted on subframes. 

Ian and Dawn Kennedy purchased this car in 2018 from its previous owner who had stored it in a garage since 1986.

The car was bought blind(!) and was delivered to Ian and Dawn by transporter. Upon inspection, it was noted that both rear subframe rubber mounts had failed and this may have been why it was initially laid up. The rear subframe was also showing signs of deterioration. As a result it was removed and all the parts transferred to a new old stock one.

Unusually, the heel board on the car was original and sound and there were no previous welded repairs anywhere on the car.

The underside of the car had been coated with old engine oil many years ago and this was now covered with mud and was congealed, so this was all scraped off.

The main floor pan had mainly surface rust. A couple of small welded repairs were made to the toe board front subframe mounting areas and a section of the lower part of the crossmember under the rear seat near where it joins the floor was corroded. A repair section was fabricated and welded in. The entire floor under rear wheel arches and front wings/inner wings were derusted inside and out, etch primed and painted body colour.

The petrol tank was cleaned up, etch primed, painted matt black and refitted, the new subframe was then fitted along with one of Ian & Dawn’s new exhausts which are a superb fit and sound just like an A-series engine should.

Bodily, the only repairs needed were the lower edges of the front wings and front panel where they join, above the headlights and the lower edges of both front wings where they meet the sills.

To keep as much authenticity as possible, these parts were cut from a pair of donor wings and welded in and some corroded areas were simply just welded in.

The exterior of the car was then prepared and treated to a full respray and all cavities Dinitrol wax injected.

Not much further work was needed to get it on the road, the engine or gearbox didn’t require any work apart from the usual oil change and servicing, the clutch and brake master cylinder were renewed.

We think the interior on this stunning car is worth a mention… The seats are totally original having responded exceptionally well to deep cleaning and whilst the carpets were very good there was extensive wear on the front section; this had to be stripped back to the bare rubber and then have bristles applied through an electrostatic process before the original heel mat was refitted. 

The engine bay still requires cosmetic work, the engine needs removing and painting and while it is out the engine bay itself will be prepared and resprayed.

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1967, Austin 1100 Countryman

Chris purchased his 1967, Austin 1100 Countryman in December 1994 when the car had already covered in the region of 250,000 miles – needless to say, it was in need of restoration…

…the car required the usual new wings and a sill whilst the driver’s side rear wheel arch was found to have no less than four wheel arch repairs riveted over the original!

With a new rear subframe the restoration was finished in 1999 – the car featured in the UK TV series, Life on Mars but soon after for no real reason Chris stopped using the car and it hasn’t really run since 2010.

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1966, MG 1100

The ADO16 was launched 60-years ago, in August, 1962 as a Morris 1100 but just 2-months later came the MG 1100 and there was something rather traditional in that the MG 1100 really was a sportier version of the Morris.

This MG 1100 was first registered in March, 1966 to Dr Patricia Archer, a medical illustrator in Caterham, who owned the car until her death in 2006. It was then entered by her nephew into auction at BCA Blackbushe. At the time the MG had only covered 27,000 miles, finished in the special order colour of Black with a Terracotta interior and complete with Dr Archer’s original finance agreement, it was in excellent condition throughout.

The current owner Adam found himself outbid on the MG at that first auction but 12-months later the MG re-appeared in the BCA catalogue – having registered a telephone bid Adam found himself successful but then 2-years his business was going through a difficult time and the MG had to be sold; initially finding a new home with an elderly gentleman from London. However, he was suffering ill-health and 12-months later the MG went to a Mr. Edwards. Then in 2020, Adam happened to be flicking through a classic car magazine at a motorway services and was amazed to see the MG advertised for sale and following an email exchange with Mr. Edwards agreed on a purchase!

Adam sold the car earlier in 2022, and “Patsy” now is lovingly looked after by Keith.