Buy­ing Guide Mor­ris Mi­nor Com­mer­cials

There’s more to the Mog­gie than just sa­loons, tour­ers and Trav­ellers – if you also like mov­ing lots of kit around, these clas­sic com­mer­cials are just the ticket

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - THIS WEEK - WORDS Richard Dredge PHO­TOG­RA­PHY Magic Car Pics

‘The re­ally good ones tend to be re­tained by dot­ing own­ers’

When it comes to us­able clas­sics, few tick as many boxes as the high-pro­file Mor­ris Mi­nor with its ex­cel­lent club and spe­cial­ist sup­port. But while most buy­ers clam­our for a Trav­eller or Tourer, some fans want some­thing a bit more un­usual, such as one of the var­i­ous com­mer­cial deriva­tives.

Of the 1.37 mil­lion Mor­ris Mi­nors built, a quar­ter were com­mer­cials, but hard lives and a lack of in­ter­est in them un­til it was too late means there aren’t that many left. And with in­ter­est in the Mi­nor van and pick-up now at an all-time high you’ll have to look hard to find some­thing worth buy­ing be­cause, pre­dictably, the re­ally good ones tend to be re­tained by dot­ing own­ers.

While the Mi­nor saloon made its de­but in 1948, it wasn’t un­til May 1953 that the Quar­ter Ton Van ar­rived, along with a pick-up, to re­place the Mor­ris Eight-based 5cwt vans. These first com­mer­cials fea­tured a split wind­screen and an 803cc over­head-valve engine with the bodyshell sit­ting on a sep­a­rate chas­sis, with a chas­sis/cab also avail­able for those who wanted be­spoke body­work. A new dash was fit­ted from Oc­to­ber 1954 then two years later the Se­ries III ap­peared with a 948cc A-se­ries engine and a one-piece wind­screen. The most us­able Mi­nor LCV of all went on sale in Septem­ber 1962; the Se­ries V with its 1098cc A-se­ries engine rated at a throb­bing 48bhp. A re­vised gear­box was fit­ted and there was also a 6cwt pay­load. In 1967 a Mi­nor LCV was in­tro­duced with an 8cwt max­i­mum pay­load with heavy-duty leaf springs at the back, stronger sus­pen­sion and steer­ing com­po­nents plus wider wheels and tyres. In 1968 an Austin­badged ver­sion en­tered show­rooms to take over from the A35 van; the new ar­rival fea­tured its own grille, hub­caps and badg­ing.

The fi­nal Mi­nor LCV was built in De­cem­ber 1971, a few months af­ter the last sa­loons and Trav­ellers were made. Al­though the orig­i­nal records no longer ex­ist it’s reck­oned that 326,626 Mi­nor pick-ups, vans and chas­sis cabs were pro­duced.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.