Jump to content


Full Members
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


lesapandre last won the day on August 20 2019

lesapandre had the most liked content!

1 Follower

About lesapandre

  • Rank
    Rank: Renault 16

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Paris Tokyo Deptford
  • Interests
    Cars off the beaten track


  • Country
    United Kingdom

Recent Profile Visitors

783 profile views
  1. Something odd about the ad. £1,111 buy it now? Wheeltrims change in photos, and clock the sandaled foot...Hmmmmmmm...proceed with extreme caution.
  2. And have an accident and you could find yourself disowned by your insurer. Could get very nasty indeed.
  3. lesapandre

    Austin Maxi

    But...it was the catnip that led people to say never again would they buy BL. It was a cynical bitsa at a time when demand for cars was high. It was pretty awful compared to the competition and never spawned a successor. I remember them new - owners were considered to be plonkers. Everyone else wanted an Escort, Cortina or even Chevette or Mini Clubman. Which is now reflected in current values too. Morris Dealers got the Minor and 1100 - both fantastic innovative cars. Then they had to sell Marina. The press launch was a disaster. Sure they sold - cheap, cheerful and available at a local dealer - but no love there. Whereas the Escort was THE car. XL, GXL, Mexico Ghia etc. Ford also outmanouvered BL on size - Escort hardly much smaller, Cortina bigger and more prestige. An interesting motoring curiosity but not much more really. They deserve to be cherished tho - it's part of it's era - but if you think about it not much more advanced than the 1952 Austin A30! The Mk2 has a radio facing away from the driver - wonder what they were smoking that day? More of the sad tale here: https://www.curbsideclassic.com/uncategorized/carshow-classic-1973-morris-marina-coupe-1-8tc-is-this-the-best-we-can-do/ But the existing Marinas deserve to survive. I'm knocking it but with lots of love. Poor old Leyland they were really out of their depth and I suppose thought they were doing the right thing. I wonder what the net and gross profit was per car compared to a Cortina. That was the crunch. Probably given their overheads not comparable.
  4. Imagine a car that big...with a boot so small. Issigonis was a great designer...but not all the time. Those odd sills seemed a bit crap and made it to several production cars too.
  5. Australian ad. All the comforts of a Jet...carpets, cigarette lighter, room and comfy seats...
  6. Just put a sticker on it with the word 'ouch'. In London dents mean you get out easier at junctions.
  7. lesapandre

    Austin Maxi

    Yes considering what it must have cost to change Princess to Ambassador. Seems an odd decision all round -Y Reg?
  8. lesapandre

    Austin Maxi

    They seemed to have all the ingredients but not make it. But the one thing Donald Stokes was right about was the need to boost exports. That way you could really pump up sales, profits and offset development costs. The original F-Series Victor sold 390,000 cars in four years of which I think 70% were exported for example. Donald Stokes failed alas to sell cars particularly desirable worldwide - I am not aware how many Princess for example were sold into Europe - whereas the UK was hoovering up Golfs & Passats etc.
  9. lesapandre

    Austin Maxi

    Gosh that looks beautiful. The last one made? Or near enough. Black bumpers and door mirrors bringing it into the modern age. Optional tints? Very nice.
  10. That is one of the BL safety vehicles - SRV3. Pedestrian frontal impact is now legislated in Europe - fascinating to see how advanced BL thinking was at the time. The low bonnet line was intended to sweep impacted pedestrians onto the bonnet as the vehicle slowed - rather than going underneath. And the smooth profile to minimise injury. https://www.aronline.co.uk/concepts-and-prototypes/bl-safety-research-vehicles/ Not a 'stying' exercise on the 1800 - this was research only - thought it did cross over into TR7 designs.
  11. lesapandre

    Austin Maxi

    Cars that killed BL - Allegro (shoddy and frumpy with no hatchback), Marina (shoddy, poor engineering dull and unreliable) and Princess and Ambassador - nobody wanted them. Maxi - innocent of all charges. Stokes hated it but it was paradoxically the real deal - the (absolutely charming but) poor cars he developed were really just that. Kind of market driven but in the crassest way. Some super motoring follies for us to enjoy but as business propositions...no. Those were the cars where people said...never again and bought something else.
  12. lesapandre

    Austin Maxi

    Yes. Definitely. Having failed in the 1800 executive sector - BL should have exited. That and the Austin Ambassador Y Reg must have soaked up ££'s of development costs to no avail. I suppose they thought they could hoover up some of the Granada/Passat market but the other cars were just too good. Good sense prevailed with the Maestro and Montego - getting the size, spec, engine size right...but by then it was all a bit too late as their market share had shrunk and Cavalier and Sierra had turned up.
  13. lesapandre

    Austin Maxi

    Aquila was an amateur design - won a competition with the Daily Telegraph I think. The winner got their car built - car of the future stuff. Certainly shows the way cars were to go - but that front over-hang and the lack of modelling to the panels makes it look a bit bland even in comparison to the Maxi beside it.
  • Create New...