Ultima GTR: Buying guide and review (1999-2015)

A full buyer's guide for the Ultima GTR (1999-2015) including specs, common problems and model history…

Ultima Sports Cars Ltd may not be immediately recognisable to casual motoring enthusiast, but they happen to be one of the most successful independent sports car manufacturers around – and have been in business since 1983. During this time the small company has amassed a number of production car speed records with their in-house designed road cars. 

Ultima’s approach to Continue reading “Ultima GTR: Buying guide and review (1999-2015)”

Austin Mini: Buying guide and review (1959-2000)

A full buyer's guide for the Austin Mini (1959-2000) including specs, common problems and model history…

Of all the thousands of cars in the history of motoring, none has ever united the classes in the same way as the BMC Mini. From students to pop stars, wealth (or lack of) has never been a barrier to Mini ownership – and nothing has changed since the car’s demise in 2000.  

Whether you’re loaded or strapped for cash, a Mini makes sense because it’s such huge fun to drive Continue reading “Austin Mini: Buying guide and review (1959-2000)”

Vauxhall Cresta: Buying guide and review (1954-1972)

A full buyer's guide for the Vauxhall Cresta (1954-1972) including specs, common problems and model history…

Introduced as a more luxurious version of the Vauxhall Velox, the Cresta offered the discerning 1950s UK motorist the option of travelling in style approaching Jaguar levels, without the price tag. Over the years, each successive generation of Cresta offered more space, pace and upmarket trim options, culminating in the Viscount which could hold its head high against some far Continue reading “Vauxhall Cresta: Buying guide and review (1954-1972)”

Ford Cortina Mk1: Buying guide and review (1962-1966)

A full buyer's guide for the Ford Cortina Mk1 (1962-1966) including specs, common problems and model history…

Anyone growing up in the Sixties was touched by the Ford Cortina Mk1. If there wasn’t one in the family, one of the neighbours would have one. The Cortina was one of the cars that defined the Sixties and it was a landmark model for Ford – a miracle of packaging, manufacturing efficiency and price.

So it was no wonder that in just four years over a million examples were Continue reading “Ford Cortina Mk1: Buying guide and review (1962-1966)”

MG Magnette ZA and ZB: Buying guide and review (1954-1958)

A full buyer's guide for the MG Magnette ZA and ZB (1954-1958) including specs, common problems and model history…

When new, the Magnette ZA and ZB were pretty much unique in the market place, as mid-sized luxury saloons weren’t fashionable. Designed by Gerald Palmer (of Jowett Javelin and Riley Pathfinder fame), the Magnette ZA first appeared in 1953, although sales didn’t start until 1954.  

Tragically, the ZA and ZB Magnette saloons are largely forgotten now, yet there’s much Continue reading “MG Magnette ZA and ZB: Buying guide and review (1954-1958)”

Toyota MR2 Mk1: Buying guide and review (1984-1989)

A full buyer's guide for the Toyota MR2 Mk1 (1984-1989) including specs, common problems and model history…

When Toyota launched the MR2, it was entering a market that was in dire need of some rejuvenation. Mid-engined sports cars dated back to the likes of the Porsche 914 and Lotus Europa, but heading into the 1980s, only the rapidly ageing Fiat X1/9 soldiered on. The traditional sports car market was also being squeezed by the rampant evolution of the hot hatch, which offered most of Continue reading “Toyota MR2 Mk1: Buying guide and review (1984-1989)”

Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire: Buying guide and review (1952-1960)

A full buyer's guide for the Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire (1952-1960) including specs, common problems and model history…

Armstrong Siddeley may not be all that well known outside of classic car circles today, but during the first half of the 20th century, it was the well-regarded manufacturer of aircraft engines and top class luxury automobiles. Arguably the company’s finest models were the opulent Sapphire range built during the ‘50s. 

Built to very high standards, and priced Continue reading “Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire: Buying guide and review (1952-1960)”

Saab 96: Buying guide and review (1960-1980)

A full buyer's guide for the Saab 96 (1960-1980) including specs, common problems and model history…

When the prototype 92 was unveiled by Saab in 1947 it looked as though the Martians had landed – here was a car that was aerodynamic with enclosed wheels, flush-fitting glass and faired-in headlamps. It was no coincidence that Saab’s roots were in aviation, so the company’s appreciation of the value of good aerodynamics was well ahead of just about everyone else. 

By the time Continue reading “Saab 96: Buying guide and review (1960-1980)”

Triumph Spitfire: Buying guide and review (1962-1980)

A full buyer's guide for the Triumph Spitfire (1962-1980) including specs, common problems and model history…

The Triumph Spitfire was launched in 1962, and aimed to compete with the Austin-Healey Sprite, but in the same year another rival also surfaced – the MGB. Thanks to its separate-chassis construction, Triumph’s Herald provided the perfect platform from which to develop a new two-seater open-topped sportscar, even if the mechanicals were derived from the 1953 Standard Continue reading “Triumph Spitfire: Buying guide and review (1962-1980)”

Hillman Imp: Buying guide and review (1963-1975)

A full buyer's guide for the Hillman Imp (1963-1975) including specs, common problems and model history…

You might be wondering why the Hillman Imp has such a bad reputation. This spacious four-seater supermini is fun to drive, costs very little to run and buy, and it looks super cool today. The reputation stems all the way back to the production issues early on in the car’s life. 

Like a lot of British cars, the Imp suffered some very serious production issues when it was Continue reading “Hillman Imp: Buying guide and review (1963-1975)”