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keef

Austin Maxi

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6 minutes ago, Scotty2 said:

Can someone tell me how many from the end my car was? Might spur me on to sort out the clutch and recommission.

LOV476X is chassis no. 53750, so 

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33 minutes ago, Scotty2 said:

I'll check Chassis number when I get home.

There should be a note of it on the auction paperwork, but I don't appear to have noted it down. :(

Original factory records were destroyed in a fire, so that's not an option either. :(

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18 hours ago, NorfolkNWeigh said:

My point, if there was one ( blame the dregs of the Honey Jack Daniels I got for Christmas) is that lots of people had a lot of loyalty to BL crap and kept going back, maybe hoping they'd get a well put together one.

I think this is true, but I think French loyalty to the big three and Italian loyalty to Fiat lasted longer, which is probably why those firms still exist.

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22 hours ago, lesapandre said:

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.

I think one of the big things that BL failed to do was get onto the hatchback craze early.

I think if the Allegro had been a hatchback that would have helped as it would have had a more modern character & would have been a Golf competitor (plus it would take Ford many years to introduce an Escort Hatch). A hatchback Mini or better still the enlarged  BMC 9x should also have gone into production in the early 1970's.

I like the Princess a lot (done quite a few miles in those) but I never saw why they produced it/spent money on it, they had the Marina as a rep's car & Cortina rival so what was the point. That money should have gone elsewhere.

I do also wonder what a 1.3 Maxi might have been like with the 1275 cc A Series. Ok the Maxi is a heavyish car but  that engine powered the Marina ok & Ford put 1.3 engines in  their Cortina's & Capri's. A 1.3 Maxi might have been able to compete in a lower capacity bracket with the Golf if the Allegro were still a saloon, (or indeed would you actually need the Allegro if you had  a 1.3 Maxi ??)

Interesting to ponder !

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39 minutes ago, ETCHY said:

I think one of the big things that BL failed to do was get onto the hatchback craze early.

I think if the Allegro had been a hatchback that would have helped as it would have had a more modern character & would have been a Golf competitor (plus it would take Ford many years to introduce an Escort Hatch). A hatchback Mini or better still the enlarged  BMC 9x should also have gone into production in the early 1970's.

I like the Princess a lot (done quite a few miles in those) but I never saw why they produced it/spent money on it, they had the Marina as a rep's car & Cortina rival so what was the point. That money should have gone elsewhere.

I do also wonder what a 1.3 Maxi might have been like with the 1275 cc A Series. Ok the Maxi is a heavyish car but  that engine powered the Marina ok & Ford put 1.3 engines in  their Cortina's & Capri's. A 1.3 Maxi might have been able to compete in a lower capacity bracket with the Golf if the Allegro were still a saloon, (or indeed would you actually need the Allegro if you had  a 1.3 Maxi ??)

Interesting to ponder !

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. 

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I too have thought about where it all went wrong for BMC, BLMC, British Leyland and Austin Rover. 

Reading the Chris Cowin book provided plenty of insight. 

Sadly it seems it was doomed from the very first merger. Car manufacturers not producing sufficient profit to fund new models were merged and continued to produce insufficient profits. Meanwhile international sales declined as well as domestic market share. 

Politicians used the car industry as a tool to try to cool  the economy by increasing the deposit required for Hire purchase to slow consumer spending. Manufacturers forced to expand their production far away from existing factories and suppliers to create jobs. Britain was unable to join the EEC in the 1960s which would apparently have been a better time to join. 

Meanwhile Ford would work towards and succeed in being able to switch production between European plants. European and Japanese manufacturers were building their international market share. 

TJF. 

The job's f*cked. 

 

Sad really, especially as it seems however good the cars were or weren't wasn't necessarily the answer. The sums did not add up, ever. 

images (1).jpeg

download.jpeg

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6 minutes ago, ETCHY said:

That Chris Cowin book looks interesting . Not seen that before.

 

It is an informative read, I would recommend it. It does read like the write up of a very well researched project. 

Having read other books on British Leyland reading this one really helps, IMO. 

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1 hour ago, lesapandre said:

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. 

However few Princesses were sold in Europe it would have been more than Ambassadors which were only produced in RHD for the UK market, why waste money pretending to have export aspirations? Pity they didn't do the same with the Sterling.

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19 minutes ago, NorfolkNWeigh said:

However few Princesses were sold in Europe it would have been more than Ambassadors which were only produced in RHD for the UK market, why waste money pretending to have export aspirations? Pity they didn't do the same with the Sterling.

Oh wow yeah I forgot about Ambassadors being RHD only. That really is mental isn't it !?

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3 hours ago, ETCHY said:

Very nice, complete with late 70's /80's glass sunroof !

Looks better than the German crap next to it.

It certainly does, clean uncomplicated lines unlike whatever that monstrosity next to it is. The Maxi could well be more spacious inside to...

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10 hours ago, bigstraight6 said:

It certainly does, clean uncomplicated lines unlike whatever that monstrosity next to it is. The Maxi could well be more spacious inside to...

I dunno what it is with BMW these days but they're making the grille look like somebody who lives in Royston Vasey :shock:. A local car for local people..:mrgreen:

 

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On 1/13/2020 at 6:45 PM, Walter White said:

I too have thought about where it all went wrong for BMC, BLMC, British Leyland and Austin Rover. 

Reading the Chris Cowin book provided plenty of insight. 

Sadly it seems it was doomed from the very first merger. Car manufacturers not producing sufficient profit to fund new models were merged and continued to produce insufficient profits. Meanwhile international sales declined as well as domestic market share. 

Politicians used the car industry as a tool to try to cool  the economy by increasing the deposit required for Hire purchase to slow consumer spending. Manufacturers forced to expand their production far away from existing factories and suppliers to create jobs. Britain was unable to join the EEC in the 1960s which would apparently have been a better time to join. 

Meanwhile Ford would work towards and succeed in being able to switch production between European plants. European and Japanese manufacturers were building their international market share. 

TJF. 

The job's f*cked. 

 

Sad really, especially as it seems however good the cars were or weren't wasn't necessarily the answer. The sums did not add up, ever. 

images (1).jpeg

download.jpeg

I have the Cowen book, very good it is too.

 

BL's problem was that Stokes, although a very good salesman, had no idea what to do. Joe Edwards, the boss of Pressed Steel Fisher, was up for the top job at BMC but refused to work for Stokes. A shame as he was an excellent manager, knew exactly where BMC had gone wrong (Issigonis)  and was very pally with the unions. The book shows how clueless BL were and how they made the same mistakes again and again.

 

People laugh at the Marina but it was quick and simple to produce, sold strongly and made a decent profit.

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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. 

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Have you had this one yet, Keef?

 

82630869_166457241288323_283868082666366

 

Daws Dawson,  'CLASSIC CARS / VEHICLES FOR SALE UK (NO PARTS) 95 or older' Facebook. He's after £2,750 for it.

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2 hours ago, Cavcraft said:

Have you had this one yet, Keef?

 

82630869_166457241288323_283868082666366

 

Daws Dawson,  'CLASSIC CARS / VEHICLES FOR SALE UK (NO PARTS) 95 or older' Facebook. He's after £2,750 for it.

Great reg & a great colour. That's a very good looking Maxi.

 

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On 1/13/2020 at 6:45 PM, Walter White said:

I too have thought about where it all went wrong for BMC, BLMC, British Leyland and Austin Rover. 

Reading the Chris Cowin book provided plenty of insight. 

.......

images (1).jpeg

download.jpeg

I've got the Cowin book and would only recommend it with caution. I've already got a shelf full of car books, many dealing with British Leyland and its previous companies. I didn't learn anything new from the Cowin book. If you don't have many other car books, fine, you'll probably learn a lot from it. If you have got other car books, don't bother. On the other hand the Barney Sherratt book about The Austin is brilliant.

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Just found this on another thread. :) 

P1060875.JPG

This thread was meant to be about the Maxi, but a lot seem to want to turn it into something else. :(

Please start your own thread if you want to talk about the downfall of BL or similar. ;)

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