First British Car Owned (currently 13 submissions)
11) My first British car was a 1957 MG Magnette ZB, dark green, very nice but badly rusted, no floor boards, but being a 17 year-old, I loved it.
10) Morris Minor 1949 green, I had it in 1951/52 (used)
It was during that period, 1952 that I drove with a friend, George Scully in his new Jaguar XK120 coupe in the first North American Mountain Rally out of NYC, thru the New England states and back to NYC. It was at that event that I saw my first Austin-Healey 3000, driven by a factory driver, Jackie Cooper, the movie star. Several of the motor companies had cars entered (Shiela van Damm was driving for Rootes)
8) My first British car purchased in 1967 was an Austin A30 purchased for the princely sum of 15 pounds. All my college friends worked for the car companies in Coventry and all drove sports cars so my mundane A30 could not compete in impressing the girls.
Rather than give up I had to at least join in the fun and purchased a 1959 Austin Healy Sprite for 100 pounds. It came with an aftermarket fibreglass front (why anyone would want that I can’t imagine). After a few months I located a proper bugeye hood that was red. My car was white. A friend who had a body shop painted it white but the red bled through to give it a charming shade of pink. Back to the body shop for primer and another final coat of white.
The car was great fun to drive and quite reliable though kind of slow. It wasn’t until I was outpaced by a Reliant three-wheeler that I really realised how slow. As I had no money it was something I learned to live with.
Every time I see one, I am reminded how much I loved that little car
7) 1960 Austin Healey Sprite on a Picnic at Wasaga Beach with my favourite Girl
6) Paul Green, at age 21, with his first British Car, a 1933 Singer Nine Sport.
This is the four seater version of the famous (to some) Singer Le Man race car. The Le Man car was a two seater with a slab petrol tank instead of the occasional two rear seats of the Sports model. No one could sit upright in the rear seats if the top was up! They both shared the 9 Horse Power overhead Cam engine with twin carbs and, wait for it, four hydraulic brakes! It had a four speed crash gear box (you had to double de-clutch to change gear, or, go straight through using no clutch at all (if you got the correct revs right) !
5) 1961 MG Midget. Love those driving lamps and folding mirrors.
4) New 1958 Vauxhall Victor in red
3) My first British car was a new 1962 Austin Mini with fog and spot lights mounted high in the front of the vehicle (a motoring law back then).
Note the MG Car Club badge on the grill.
2) My first was a 1962 Mk 1 Ford Cortina. It cost me $500 in the spring of 1969.
It was a devil to start and I had to try to park it on a hill so I could roll it towards the bottom and jump the clutch. In August 1970, it was hit from behind on the eastbound 401 between Yonge and Bayview when I ran through a pool of water from a downpour, soaking the electrics. Everything died. I was stopped on the shoulder when a vehicle behind me lost control on the slick road surface and hit the driver’s side rear quarter.
Luckily that’s where the spare was stored in the trunk and the tire absorbed much of the impact. The unlamented Cortina went for scrap.
1) My first British car was a red 1959 Austin Mini. 850cc’s of pure fun. A wonderfully economical bit of transportation to, along with the joy of the ride, take me to my summer job and back in the summer of ’62. Bought it in April and sold it in September – along with a new $300 paint job. Profitably, of course.