You wouldn’t believe a car so old could be a practical classic, but you’d be surprised because most of the plucky Morris Minors you’ll see on the roads today barely have an original part left on them.
Such is the fanbase for this magnificent symbol of Britain in the 1950’s and 1960’s that there are workshops and mechanics all over the UK dedicated to the upkeep of these wonderful machines. Today, you can get brand new engine parts, interior trim pieces, seats, body panels, chassis and much more; most of which can be ordered and manufactured brand new for your little Minor. The active groups of enthusiasts, the ages of which range from teenagers to centennials, can help to give mechanical advice as well as guide you on the best ways to keep your Minor in pristine condition.
If you’re looking for an exciting classic then the Minor isn’t for you. 0-60mph on some versions takes up to 52 seconds with a top speed barely above 60. The car will not be hurried no matter how hard you press your foot to the floor, but of course it wasn’t built to be hurried. Time moved slower in the 1950’s and fast roads hadn’t been invented. The Minor was built to sedately trundle down the country lanes that formed Britain’s road network, not to cruise the motorway or set lap times at track day events.
Further to this, the car barely has any internal equipment or features. The first Minors took to the roads in 1948 and the last in the early 70’s, meaning that technology for driver and passenger entertainment has come a long way since then. However, if one goes by the rule of less being more, the less parts inside the Minor means there are fewer things that could potentially break.
That, generally, is why the Minor is such a success story. Aside from the fact that the car is as cute as a button and holds a universal charm that not many vehicles do, Morris Minors can be run on a shoestring budget and basically comprise of the most basic mechanical layout. It was this simplistic nature that made them easy to build and popular to buy. There was truly no fear that these cars would go wrong because there simply wasn’t anything to break.
Of course, make sure when buying a Minor you choose one that actually looks like it’s been loved, but even then buying replacement parts isn’t that expensive. Even burnt out shells have been brought back to life as restoration projects because of the ease and lack of expense spares and new parts can be procured and fitted.
Furthermore, fuel efficiency was paramount for the Minor when it was launched as Britain was still grappling with the scourge of fuel rationing following the end of World War II and the later Suez Crisis. As such, the Minor doesn’t guzzle fuel, in fact it barely even drinks it; it sips petrol in the same manner a 19th century duchess would sip her tea.
Overall, the Morris Minor is an incredibly popular and deeply loved classic for a good reason. It’s so easy to maintain and drive even a child could do it; and they do. If anything, the minimal running costs, incredibly high fuel efficiency, widespread fanbase and charming image would make the Minor a perfect first car for students. Indeed if you’re the kind of knuckle dragging millennial who only buys a car to pull birds, race between traffic lights and outrun the police then obviously the humdrum Minor isn’t for you. However, if you’re someone who appreciates their little car and simply uses it as a humble form of cheap and cheery transportation, look no further! 😀
- Comfort – 10/10 – Not as good as modern equivalents, but generally alright for a 1948 design
- Practicality – 10/10 – What the mighty Minor was known for
- Reliability – 10/10 – With no shortage of spares and an active fanbase, reliability is the least of your worries
- Speed – 3/10 – Glaciers move faster
- Handling – 9/10 – No power steering for the 1940’s, but the car’s lightweight makes it generally easy to manage
- Looks – 10/10 – One word; charming.
- Equipment – 5/10 – Barely anything, but can be retrofitted accordingly
- Price – 10/10 – Perhaps the cheapest pre-1950’s classic on the market today
- Value – 8/10 – The love and following for these cars can lead to some handsome income in certain instances
- Total – 75/90 – The original classic car!