1953 Austin Healey 100/4 2.6 carb petrol from Australia and New Zealand
A snorting steel steed - fast and willing
The car was partially under the control of Lucas, The Prince of Darkness. This meant that electrical failures with odd and wide-ranging effects would occur at unusual and inconvenient times.
Austin Healeys really only ever had one body shape. Designed around 1952 by a young genius called Gerry Coker, and still the same at the end of production in 1968.
On paper the 2,660cc clunker of a long stroke cast iron engine (it took two strong men to lift the head off the block) looked ridiculous, but the superb electric overdrive and the thumping torque combined to create a car where changing gear was often optional.
1,700rpm at the metropolitan speed limit - long legs on the open road, and the beautiful noise!!... (red-lined at 4,500 though).
So many joys in owning and driving - only three major faults, there from the first to last day of production:
1. Laughable ground clearance due to the chassis being below the back axle.
2. Heat transfer from the engine - hot in summer, hot in winter.
3. Vintage pilot position.
But what a chariot!!
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 16th July, 2001
21st Oct 2004, 12:43
Low ground clearance? Exhaust system is a consumable item. Owned a 1965 3000 BJ8 and 1958 100/6. The 3000 is the only vehicle I have ever owned that I was happy driving down the road at the speed limit. 4th gear and overdrive, top down, sun shining, engine just at a rumble... life was good.
Had problems with rust (this was in the early 1980's) in everything (including outriggers off the frame) but the aluminum shrouds around the hood and trunk lid.