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64A60

The Austin A60 Cambridge Automatic

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Lovely!.   I think the Farinas suit the Borg Warner very well and that history makes it a very special car.   These really did offer the working man a taste of motoring several notches above Victor, Cortina or Minx levels for about the same money.   A good one is still a real pleasure to drive.

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Gorgeous gorgeous car!

I absolutely love these, and the big Farina’s. They just look so stylish and they’re absolutely solid as a rock too, best of British imho!

We had a few of these and the Westy’s around when I was working in a garage, one of the other guys was a fan of them for ‘motorsport’ purposes, and they were very good at it too. Always seemed a shame to me but there wasn’t much I could do about it! Even the rough old heaps he used to buy to race were always lovely things to look at and be in.

 

I’m very jealous of yours!!

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Those BW35s are clunky, unrefined and guzzle power but by feck are they strong.  A mate of mine had the Riley version a few years back - it'd been converted to hand controls with a throttle on the steering column and a massive lever to operate the brakes.

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I can vouch for this having the quietest B series I've ever heard, with not a hint of timing chain rattle, tappets or blowing exhaust, definitely puts both of mine to shame. I suppose at genuine sub-50k miles it should be good!

Really like the idea of an auto in something like this.

Great to hear the back story too :)

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Lovely old thing. My family had a couple of new ones in the early 60's. Those were the years when companies changed their cars every year! I think the Cortina when it appeared was quite a bit cheaper - and sales of the Austin were considerably impacted. Our family went over to Cortinas which had a 'younger' image. And the rest is history. The Austin 1800 was the A60 successor supposedly but ended up too big. So both were made at the same time. Ford meanwhile forged ahead with the various Cortina updates.

 

Our Austins had odd mats in the footwell (aftermarket) my dad put in - in a kind of rubber mesh. Nice car. I remember the wood-effect dashboard and the distinctive Austin smell - ours had leather seats. Happy days. One was maroon with a white flash, the other a dark blue I recall.

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I had one exactly the same as this back in the 70's, except mine was a manual.

Absolutely loved the car and polished it every weekend without fail.

Unfortunately rust took it in the end.

Looking back, I wish I'd got it fixed, but these, Landcrabs, 1100's etc were plentiful at the time.

I think I bought a Triumph 2000 Mk1 after the Cambridge.

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A friend of my dad had an Oxford auto and my brother had an MG Magnette auto which he recently sold after not using it for about 18 years. I had a Cambridge Estate back in 1984, bought as it was the cheapest, unsold, car in the local paper. It did me well but was a bit crumbly, one day in Malmesbury a chap came and had a chat with me about it, turned out he had the Morris version, we kept in touch and when the Cambridge failed its MoT test I gave him the car. Turned out mine was the better of the two so he welded it up and it lived a bit longer. Mine didn’t have a very good battery so my colleagues often were treated to the sight of me starting it on the handle. My abiding memory is that it was really comfortable (although my alternative cars at the time were a Lotus 7 and later a Morgan 4/4, being dragged down the road in a wash tub would be more comfortable than those)

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The Automatic version of the A60 would have cost about £850 when new in 1964- the manual version costing £756. Purchased by a Mr. Francis Hundley of St. Catherines Road, Ruislip on 26 August 1964,

 

(can't stop it crossing out...)

 

In todays money - £756 = £15044.40 and £850 = £16915.00.

 

The cheapest automatic Kia Rio will cost you £15,895, top of the range = £17,790. Will these be 'wonderful' things in 50 years time and how would they cope with ba*ger racing?

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If you don't know it take a gander at this website here: https://www.measuringworth.com

 

Rather than looking at a straight inflation rate growth take a look at the value relative to average earnings. Your £850 car in 1964 relative to earnings is over £42,000.

 

Cars are very cheap now.

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Good point. Things were, relative to earnings, expensive in the 60's. It's partly why the Cortina did so well - price and mpg which was better than rivals. The 'tina buried the Hillman Minx and meant that cars like the A60 never made enought profit to get a meaningful update whilst the Cortina got two major updates. It's a sobering thought that the Morris Oxford version of the A60 was a contemporary of the Cortina MK3 only ending production in 1971 - and in MKV form was in production before the Cortina in 1959! No wonder Ford were doing so well. But it also shows what a good car the A60 was - people kept buying them so BMC/British Leyland kept making them ( in relatively small numbers though).

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On 4/29/2019 at 9:52 PM, HMC said:

Wow, my fave colour combo for these. That’s got to be the lowest mileage, most original one out there!

 

Have you had to do much bodywork?

The sills and front outriggers were replaced in 1985 (I have the invoice) and a new offside steel front wing was fitted around the same time. The lower half of the body below the "Flash" has also been resprayed. 

On 4/29/2019 at 10:04 PM, Amishtat said:

What a lovely old thing! I appreciate you're not a car show man but will we see this at Little Clacton this August?

Hopefully, I should be visiting a friend in nearby St Osyth that weekend so will try to pop over 😃

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St Osyth. The home of Staton Abbey - the pen name of motoring writer William Staton-Bevan. Most of his books I have seen are by Pitmans Motoring Library in the little series The Book of the...(Austin, Hillman etc). Covering most of the Post-War major brands and models. Useful little books I still have a few. I presume he took his pen name from the beautiful Abbey at St. Osyth. He must have been a  long-term resident - though I have not found out much more about him than that. 

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Lovely.

My Dad fitted a 1622 and auto box in his 59 Oxford. It was a nice place to be (if a tad slow). The brakes had to work harder because of less engine braking iirc. We also had a crusty A60 auto for a while as a spares car. I remember snapping the automatic badge on the boot lid and being rather sad. My Dad wound up chopping it up on the driveway and disposing of it in very strange ways.

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Styling Pininfarina - but the detail was by Dick Burzi at Longbridge who was head of design at BMC - not sure how much of that front grille is Burzi - quite different to the Morris version. Beautifully done with a real economy of line.

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To me that is a proper chariot. Spot on. Me jealous ? No,no,no,no,no, Yes.

I have to confess that back in the late seventies I did put a couple round

an oval shaped course where contact was, sort of, encouraged. 

My excuse is that nobody wanted them and even a, fairly, good runner

could be had for peanuts coz everyone wanted a Scrote or a  spanish Curtain.

 

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