ENGINE 1725cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 62bhp@4400rpm TORQUE 93lb ft@2500rpm MAXIMUM SPEED 84mph 0-60MPH 16sec FUEL CONSUMPTION 24-26mpg TRANSMISSION RWD, four-speed manual MoT 12 months ODOMETER 72,662 miles WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?
It feels far quicker than the 0-60mph time would suggest, the engine revving freely and smoothly, even at higher revs. It feels strong, hauling the small car along quite rapidly. The suspension is supple, with a floating ride and a bit of roll, yet it tackles poor road surfaces easily and quietly. The four-speed, floor-shift manual gearchange is light, the synchromesh working perfectly as it slides neatly into each position. Steering is light, with no play and the brakes are very good – the car stops fast and straight with good pedal feel.
This car has been undersealed and the floor and inner wheelarches appear to be solid. The panels are all in great shape – there are no dents or scrapes and no sign of rust. There are barely any stonechips to speak of, but there are a couple of cracks in the paint on the bootlid and offside rear wheelarch. The chrome is good – the bumpers are presentable, but there’s a little pitting on the door handles. The 155/80 R13 tyres all have good tread but The green vinyl seats show little sign of wear; they don’t appear to have been retrimmed but the driver’s seat certainly doesn’t look like it’s been sat in for 72,600 miles. There are static seatbelts in the front, but none in the back. The rear bench is in excellent condition. There are no cracks in the dashboard top and the fake wood looks good, but on the negative side, the carpets have been replaced recently – the material itself is good but the fit isn’t as good as it could be. The slim steering wheel has a little surface wear in the plastic rim. An old Hillman Owners’ Club sticker in the rear screen suggests that the car has enjoyed a loving and enthusiastic home in the past.
UNDER THE BONNET
Part of this car’s rather sprightly performance can perhaps be attributed to the carburettor, which has been upgraded to a Weber 34 ICH. There is also a spin-on oil filter and a new fuel pump and the engine bay itself appears to have been wellmaintained. It’s believed to have been restored about 10 years ago and the garage reports that the last owner traded this car in for another Rootes model. Overall it is very solid and mechanically it feels superb.
THE CCW VIEW
Although unassuming in appearance, this modest saloon is a brilliantly rewarding drive. Perhaps the engine has been tweaked as it feels like it flies. The ride and seats are comfortable and it feels mechanically strong – overall it a great place to be. It’s by no means a concours example, but it drives beautifully and looks like a lot of Minx for the money.