1982 Morris Ital HL 1.3 from UK and Ireland


Very cheap, underrated, and usable


The exhaust on this car will need replacing in the next few months.

The bottom of the front wings will need a small amount of welding.

Engine slightly smoky.

General Comments:

Always starts very well in whatever the weather.

The interior of the car is like new.

For only a 1.3cc engine the car performs very well seen as it has such a large saloon body.

The clutch like typical Marinas and Ital's is very sharp.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th July, 2005

5th Sep 2005, 08:28

I disagree with the previous comment, I have owned many of these cars and they are great.

They are always reliable, and provide great cheap transport.

They cannot have been that bad to have survived so long.

There is a thriving club which thinks they are great, and I agree.

7th Sep 2005, 08:46

I think that everybody is entitled to their opinion about these cars, nearly everybody who comes to speak to me about my car has kind words to say and fond memories.

Sure they have some problems, but what car hasn't?

I have just traveled

900 miles in mine without any trouble, I averaged 30 mpg and cruised at 70 mph.

Unless you have owned an Ital don't knock it.

5th Jul 2006, 21:45

I love the Ital, I'm 24 and remember these little cars fondly. Although my family never owned one, I always thought they looked pretty smart. Not so long ago, I bought an Ital van... full of rust, but with bags of character and a real car to drive. I love it and it only cost £115!

30th Jul 2006, 20:12

You need to have experience of something before passing comment. An opinion along the lines of "I don't like them so they must be bad" is worthless.

Marinas and Itals were some of the few cars that actually made money for BL, proving more reliable than other models. They were a reliable, spacious and economical family car, and no more rust prone than Escorts, Cortinas, Vivas or Avengers.

Over 700,000 Marinas/Itals were built in total, which I think speaks volumes.

No, having an owners club doesn't automatically mean a car is any good, but it does show that there are people who like them.

11th Feb 2009, 10:09

I had an a red Ital 1.7 SL Estate for 5 years. It has been economical and easy to maintain. There have been 'better' cars that were in production at the time, but where are they now?

30th Jan 2010, 16:58

The last Itals were made 26 years ago and you wonder where they've all gone? The same place as all the Astras, Sierras etc from that year I would think!!

1982 Morris Ital 1.3 1.3 from UK and Ireland


Everything that was wrong with British car industry


The synchromesh on 2nd gear never worked.

It refused to start if there had been even a hint of rain or damp.

The flasher unit went three times.

The wipers started to go slow after about five minutes of use.

General Comments:

This car handles like a dodgy shopping trolley on a bad day.

Pulling away from the traffic lights it might just beat a tractor in good light and road conditions.

Why on earth was the radio positioned facing away from the driver? How to have an accident in one easy lesson.

I think that there was more rust then paint on it when I finally gave up on it after 18 miserable and expensive months.

Even the car dealer whom I asked to take it in part ex, said "you are bloody joking aren't you, mate? What the hell would I do with this thing?"

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 16th November, 2003

30th Jul 2006, 20:24

You should try servicing your cars. One thing the Ital was good at was reliability. Unless something is seriously wrong, the A series engine is a first time starter. My Ital 1.3 was never troubled by wet weather and used to get 40 mpg. It sounds like yours was knackered when you bought it.