Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Driving -

1 ENGINE IS­SUES While the en­gines are tough, the cranks can break on high-mileage ex­am­ples. They’re noisy, but rum­bles from the bot­tom end spell trou­ble. Look for coolant leaks – over­heat­ing is quite com­mon.


Chas­sis tend to re­sist rot quite well (and most will have been well rust-proofed by now any­way), but more of an is­sue is likely to be ac­ci­dent dam­age, so check for bent frames un­der­neath, in­di­cat­ing a shunt. 3BODY BAD OR BEAU­TI­FUL Look for rust in and around the mud­guards, es­pe­cially where they af­fix, while vi­bra­tions can cause stress cracks in the paint, which will let wa­ter in and cause cor­ro­sion. This is likely around open­ing pan­els. And there’s wood to be con­sid­ered too – any ex­posed parts of the frame should be treated reg­u­larly with preser­va­tives. Watch out for rot.


While there’s not much to the in­te­rior of a Cowley, a re­trim will cost a fair bit be­cause of the wooden dash­board and leather up­hol­stery. Elec­tri­cal sys­tems can play up – thanks to age­ing wiring and the ad­di­tion of more mod­ern items such as in­di­ca­tors etc. Make sure you can live with the non­syn­chromesh gear­box; it’s quite an art form to get it right.

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