ENGINE 1592cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 53bhp@4100rpm TORQUE 87lb ft@2100rpm MAXIMUM SPEED 79mph 0-60MPH 23sec FUEL CONSUMPTION 26-30mpg TRANSMISSION RWD, four-speed manual MoT 12 months on sale ODOMETER 23,231 miles
WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?
This Minx has the feel of a well-looked after example. It starts following a short churn on the starter with no excessive exhaust smoke and drives smoothly with some fine Rootes gear whine. Performance from the 1.6-litre engine is adequate for most needs, cruising happily at 58mph with more in reserve. The Hillman also feels ‘solid’ on the road with surprisingly little wander, given that it’s a 1960s car on crossply tyres. The steering isn’t over-light and feels well-weighted, the clutch isn’t too heavy and the brakes and floor-mounted gearchange work well.
The single-tone cream paint is in good order. We could find no concerning blisters or spots of rust anywhere; even the wheelarches have survived well. The sills look good and there are no signs of welding, though a couple of rust streaks in the paint suggest that there might be some internal corrosion to the front doors, though there is no other external evidence and the drainage holes aren’t blocked. The car’s chrome has stood up very well, though there is some minor pitting to the door handles. The tyres look to be in generally good condition and are a mixture of Dunlop and Camac.
HOW’S THE INTERIOR?
All the interior metalwork is in excellent condition and the dashboard brightwork looks new. There is no crazing or other signs of damage to the various interior badges and the steering wheel looks hardly used. All the instruments work as they should. The car has been fitted with period Britax seatbelts and the door panels and padding on the parcel shelf look to have been replaced. The carpets are original but serviceable and the glass is in good condition.
UNDER THE BONNET
The engine runs extremely well and there are no signs of bad ‘breathing’ when the oil filler cap is removed. There’s a bit of oil on the rocker cover, most likely down to a drip or two when filling rather than anything sinister; the oil itself doesn’t appear to be contaminated. All the hoses look to be serviceable, as does what appears to be the original radiator, and there are no wiring horrors. The car has plenty of service history, confirming that it’s been well looked after, rather than subject to major engine detailing.
THE CCW VIEW
This is a good, honest example of these fine, stylish cars, suggesting that the mileage could be genuine. We’d want to check inside those doors to ensure that there’s no incipient corrosion, but the owners say that the car has been impeccably reliable in their two-year ownership. Sadly, the car was stripped of its original registration number, so the DVLA issued it with a standard A-suffix number in the 1980s.