Austin America Reviews from North America

1970 Austin America 1.3

Model year1970
Year of manufacture1970
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 1.3 Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.3 / 10
Distance when acquired32000 miles
Most recent distance39000 miles
Previous carRover - Austin America

Summary:

Fun and interesting

Faults:

Rusted part in carburetor, master brake cylinder, alternator, oil leak, knobs broken off of heater lever.

General Comments:

I love this car. It handles very well and is very fun to drive.

It is not a fast car, but it runs very well. The 4 speed automatic transmission is very busy in city driving, and you can't miss when it shifts up or down.

It is very roomy inside.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th January, 2010

1969 Austin America 4 cylinder

Model year1969
Year of manufacture1969
First year of ownership1973
Most recent year of ownership1973
Engine and transmission 4 cylinder Manual
Performance marks 4 / 10
Reliability marks 1 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
4.0 / 10
Distance when acquired55000 miles
Most recent distance58000 miles

Summary:

A Nightmare on Main Street

Faults:

Front drive shaft bent.

Transmission gear sheared.

Clutch slave cylinder leaked.

Discovered metal filings in the oil pan.

General Comments:

This was my first car, a 1969 Austin America. It was one of the first front wheel drive cars available at the time. It was kind of like a big Mini.

This was the wrong car for an American teenager. I drove it way too hard. It was a delicate flower. It made me swear off front wheel drive until the 1990's.

I do reflect fondly on the car though. The steering wheel was tilted, sort of like a van or bus. The car was fun to drive and I'd love to have the chance to drive another one. Definitely not a daily driver, and almost impossible to find now.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd November, 2009

4th Nov 2009, 13:04

Yes it sounds like 3 out of 4 of the problems you listed were from misuse & abuse (not that they were a reliable car by any stretch).

I remember when my sister was looking for her first car, the local Ford dealer had a '69 Austin America, but my dad instead bought her a '65 LTD. I guess she was better off in the land yacht, but the Austin sure was cute.

29th Apr 2010, 21:08

I'm impressed somebody actually bought one of those in the US. It must have stood out like a sore thumb amongst all those full size sleds. The car really wasn't designed for a country the size of the USA; here in the UK they were normally bought by little old ladies as a shopping car. They are rare over here now too; they rusted appallingly even when new.

20th Jun 2010, 08:05

I bought the car because a friend of mine in high school had one. He used to talk about painting a big British flag on the roof. Whenever I stopped for fuel, service station attendants would talk to me about it (how long ago it's been when there were service station attendants?). I remember the car had a carburetor heater. One night I left the key on and heated the carb. all night long and the battery was dead. I recently found a picture of it, the only picture that exists. I keep it on my fridge.

Average review marks: 5.6 / 10, based on 2 reviews