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23 minutes ago, egg said:

K reg, and Kent registered. Who were the original supplying dealer?

Must make next year's calendar.

Going by the rear number plate and  the sticker on the tailgate, it was at one time sold by Colonial of Gillingham. No idea if they sold Penzas new, though. I imagine that most Sao dealers were small garages with one or two car capacity showrooms akin to the dealers of other 'budget' marques and rural Rover and Ford dealers of the time.

I believe that the cars were imported by a subsidiary of Mazda UK, which is based in Kent and has been since the marque was first sold in the UK. Every photo of a UK model Penza I've seen online features cars with Kent registrations :)

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Did John Childs ever sell Sao? I know of them as they took my Laurel in as a part-ex against a Perodua in 2008, and Streetview shows they still had old Dacia and Yugo signage in place as recently as 2016. The sort of place that would have tried Sao....

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2 hours ago, SiC said:

Didn't trigger track one of these down a year or so ago as well?

This is the same one, Jude posted it on Facebook and knowing it's one of the Autoshite holy grails I posted it on here.

 

I'm pleased it's been bought and has found a new home, just to find that Londsdale now!

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Having lived/worked in Sarf Efrica for some time, I am very aware of the curious S.A. variants

and unique vehicles produced there, so I can safely say I have seen another imported Penza,

initially on SA plates, then re-registered on UK plates, driving round Bournemouth suburbs by

a young lady, it must have been her daily, as I would often see it turn at lights on the A348.

Hello Nigel,  and "well done" !     

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'Sao' was a brand name of Samcor - the South African Motor Corporation, who still exist now assembling Fords (Ford once (still do?) own Mazda). Samcor also assembled the booted Mazda 323 sold as the Mazda? Meteor or Ford Laser in some markets. Automotive Holdings, a subsidiary of Mazda Cars Ltd, imported the Penza; there's an Automotive Group Holdings still registered in Orpington - I wonder if this is them?

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27 minutes ago, Steve79 said:

you can cite autoshite as a source on Wikipidia?! LOL

not complaining mind, the Wikipedia article for the invalid carriage/Invacar is in serious need of corrections and updates :mrgreen:

(sadly im not sure how to go about editing wikipedia articles LOL)

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4 hours ago, catsinthewelder said:

I remember Embletons in Durham sold them alongside Kia Prides when Lancia pulled out of the UK.

Yup, I can remember a shopping centre up the road from me displaying a Kia Pride and Sao Penza alongside each other in the main concourse... I was about ten or eleven at the time. I found it a bit confusing since they were both plainly Mazdas, and neither Kia nor Sao were familiar manufacturers to me at all... the Kia, in particular, looked rather naff with its ersatz whitewall tyres.

I've been trying to remember which local dealer sold them, and can only assume it was either Sammy Mellon - who were Mazda dealers in the 1980s, but were possibly transitioning to their current Hyundai dealership at that stage - or else Roy Paul Motors, who had recently lost their Volvo franchise and were grubbing about with SEAT Marbellas, Ibizas and Málagas c.1990

24 minutes ago, Steve79 said:

That's a pleasing reference to see. Good going!

901394583_SaoPenzaWikiAS.png.4de190e5c6a3bf7bf25d0b687c042f43.png

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I've driven a Penza, a long time ago on holiday in Cyprus we rented one for a few days. I remember driving it on roads I'd never have considered taking my own car, and at one point we got lost on what started out as a dirt track and ended up as a military training site. We were 'encouraged' to leave by some armed soldiers.

My memory of the car is that it took the kind of abuse only a rental car should ever endure, and apart from being full of red dust when we took it back, it survived the experience without protest.
I still have a very blurry pic of it somewhere.

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Well done Nigel Bickle for once again saving another rare motor. Looks to have survived pretty well given it's lengthy layup too.

Added Bonus for me is I can finally tick it off in my 1992 I Spy II Cars Book. Which I've had since I was about 8 years old.

IMG_20190611_164749.thumb.jpg.b1626e6583f215fc3601b908ff0812cf.jpgIMG_20190611_164042.thumb.jpg.307862598c5944b6f4dd126810467ef1.jpg

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