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Cars that work for a living. Taxis and more, pictures and stories.

Dyslexic Viking

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Found 3 more photos of old Norwegian taxis





Taxis are the easiest to find pictures of but have finally found another one. 1958 Minor pickup bought new on a smallholding in Norway and the owner got many years of service out of it.

1958 and new and the owner is so happy he found the accordion



Transporting hay in the 1970s



And it leaves the farm in 1992


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Got my car magazines in the post and as always there are some stories from the old days. 

The author who wrote this story grew up in a small village in rural Norway in the 1950s and reminisced about the local taxi owner/driver. Like most places in the countryside then, the taxi also functioned as the local ambulance, so there always had to be someone near the phone, which was difficult as he also ran a small farm. So it was mostly the wife that looked  after the phone and in case of emergency she went out and fired 2 shots with the shotgun to alert her husband.

Who in such cases would come running like hell into the house and quickly change clothes and then get out in to the tired 1930's Buick and disappear in a cloud of smoke down the gravel road. This continued for many years. The Buick was finally exchanged for a used Mercedes, which after a while was exchanged for a new Volga that came to serve the area for many years.

I love stories like this and certain things really was better before.

And have also found a couple more old photos of Norwegian taxis.




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I have come across another picture of Norwegian taxis and I really like this one. The picture was taken in Oslo in 1970 and there are 6 Mercedes taxis here, 5 W110 fintales 4 of these I can say with certainty are 2 generation W110 due to the turn signals and 1 W115. And none of the taxis have the Drosje registration plates, so they probably started phasing them out now.


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On 21/06/2023 at 16:51, Dyslexic Viking said:

Norwegian ambulances


The fifth one down is a Humber Snipe MK2 - about 1950 - these were usually sold as a saloon car or Thrupp and Maberly in Cricklewood London did conversions to convertibles and limo's - for Rootes. That body looks very 'American' behind the A pillar tho - so I'd guess it's a Norwegian conversation on an export chassis? 

What a find!

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5 minutes ago, lesapandre said:

The fifth one down is a Humber Snipe MK2 - about 1950 - these were usually sold as a saloon car or Thrupp and Maberly in Cricklewood London did conversions to convertibles and limo's - for Rootes. That body looks very 'American' behind the A pillar tho - so I'd guess it's a Norwegian conversation on an export chassis? 

What a find!

Yes, I'm guessing it's a Norwegian bodywork and it's rare to see a Humber here and I've never seen another as an ambulance, so this is possibly the only one here.

I wonder why a Humber was chosen as a basis for an ambulance as this is very unusual choice for Norway.

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I've been looking now for Humber ambulances in Norway and came  across another one surprisingly quickly, so there were actually several.

This is a 1948 Humber delivered to Stavanger hospital in 1949 and built in Stavanger as an ambulance.



This seems like an expensive choice of ambulance for a then poor Norway so I guess it was given as a gift to the hospital by a rich person. Norwegian ship owners were known for doing this and it may have happened here as well.

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Rootes were keen exporters - here they are exhibiting their range in Poland in 1949. 


With the Post-War vehicle shortage maybe they hoped to get into the local market but failed ultimately.

The car had a 4-litre side-valve engine - ponderously slow really - and outgunned by anything on an American chassis - particularly after the US motor industry moved on to V8's.

Rootes cars were nicely made but under-engineered. They went bust about 1965 and were taken over by Chrysler.

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Yes quite a turbulent time for poor old Rootes.

By mutual agreement, from mid-1964, Rootes Motors was taken over in stages by Chrysler Corporation, which bought control from the Rootes family in 1967.

The new name for Rootes Motors Limited – Chrysler UK Limited took effect at midnight 30 June 1970 - (cited in Business Diary 'The Uprooting of Rootes goes ahead' - The Times, 1 July 1970.)

The various marques they held continued their old names to the mid-1970's - the Hillman Avenger then, for example, becoming the 1976–1979 Chrysler Avenger.

But by about '76 all the venerable Rootes names had sadly gone - including  Humber.

Would have seemed possibly inconceivable to the driver of that substantial ambulance that in not too many years the well- respected brand would be no more!

There is a really excellent Rootes archive in the UK:


Web shows a couple of similar big Humber ambulances of this era surviving in New Zealand.

I've never seen one in the UK - but there is one on the web with a boxier body held by the Ambulance Heritage Society.


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More old Norwegian taxis

1938 US Ford



1955 US Ford Country Sedan late 1950s in Alta



1958 US Ford Country Sedan 



1950 Mercury in 1955



These are the taxis in the Rena area in 1959

From the left, Pobeda, Mercedes, 1953 Chevrolet, 1956 Chevrolet, 1952 Plymouth. 


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