Austin Mae­stro

EN­GINE 1275cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 68bhp@5800rpm TORQUE 75lb ft@3500rpm MAX­I­MUM SPEED 97mph 0-60MPH 12.9sec FUEL CON­SUMP­TION 28-30mpg TRANS­MIS­SION FWD, four-speed man­ual MoT 12 months ODOME­TER 37,416 miles

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Contents - Gil­lian Car­moodie

WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?

This Mae­stro would make for a de­pend­able, yet cheap-torun Eight­ies clas­sic. The en­gine starts well and although the gearchanges are ini­tially notchy, it be­comes eas­ier to swap be­tween ra­tios as the the car warms up. The 1.3L keeps pace with mod­ern traf­fic and, be­ing a fairly light­weight ve­hi­cle, the steer­ing doesn’t feel overly heavy. Its long-travel sus­pen­sion soaks up most im­per­fec­tions in the road and makes for a sur­pris­ingly com­fort­able ride. There’s a high bit­ing point on the clutch, but over­all it’s an en­tirely com­pe­tent ve­hi­cle free of wor­ry­ing me­chan­i­cal woes.

BODY­WORK CHECK

This Mae­stro is sur­pris­ingly solid with the body­work in good con­di­tion over­all. The mul­ti­coloured paint­work and plastic trim is still bright and fresh with no scratches or paintchips to be found. Some mi­nor rust has be­gun to bub­ble through on the lower grey sec­tion of both the driver and pas­sen­ger doors, but the bot­tom edges are com­pletely free from degra­da­tion. The sills and un­der­side are clean, although a close in­spec­tion will re­veal a re­pair to the in­ner door­frame on the driver’s side. The thin red and black coach­lines re­main com­plete down the sides of the Mae­stro, though the Austin wheel trims are slightly scuffed and the in­di­ca­tor light cov­ers would ben­e­fit from some re­con­di­tion­ing work.

HOW’S THE IN­TE­RIOR?

The in­te­rior is in highly orig­i­nal con­di­tion, from the brown dash­board and yel­low gauge nee­dles to the beige cloth seats, de­tailed with red, brown and light blue stitch­ing. The door­cards and car­pets are in ex­cel­lent con­di­tion and be­hind the steer­ing wheel all the gauges work. The pas­sen­ger sun­vi­sor has in­curred dam­age, with a tear to the cloth re­veal­ing the yel­low foam in­side. The head­lin­ing has not worn well and is sag­ging over the rear seats. The boot is clean, with a grey car­pet cov­er­ing spare wheel and tools.

UN­DER THE BON­NET

Open­ing the Mae­stro’s bon­net re­veals a clean and tidy en­gine bay within which sits the A-se­ries en­gine. It runs free from leaks or con­cern­ing noises and all of flu­ids sit at their max­i­mum lev­els. The wiring is im­pec­ca­bly neat and the elec­tron­ics are in good health too. This 1.3L has only seen two pre­vi­ous own­ers, each of which has en­sured that it’s prop­erly and reg­u­larly ser­viced. Its his­tory also in­cludes an orig­i­nal Mae­stro hand­book, plus a UK dealer list.

THE CCW VIEW

It’s re­fresh­ing to find an Austin Mae­stro that has been well looked af­ter and main­tained through­out its life. Although the head­lin­ing is in need of re­place­ment, this 1.3L pro­vides a very orig­i­nal pack­age that should of­fer many years of cheap but re­li­able mo­tor­ing with a retro twist.

Sag­ging head­lin­ing lets down nicely pre­served cabin.

A-se­ries starts eas­ily, runs well and is free from leaks.

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