More new 1:43 scale Oxford tooling breathes model authenticity into another famous marque from the 1950s. The Austin-Healey 100 was a sports car developed by Donald Healey, who intended it to be produced by his small car company in Warwick between 1953 and 1956. Its success stemmed from a single Healey Hundred as it became known, which Donald Healey exhibited at the 1952 London Motor Show. Its design was spotted by Austin's Managing Director, Leonard Lord, who struck a deal with Donald Healey, resulting in the car being re-named Austin Healey 100. The finished vehicles comprised trimmed body/chassis units produced by Jenson in West Bromwich, collaborating with Austin, who produced the mechanical components and final assembly at Austin's Longbridge plant. During the lifetime of the Healey 100, over 14,600 were made, either as a 3-speed series BN1, the subject of our model, or 4-speed series BN2 manual. The ‘100' was named by Donald Healey for the car's ability to reach 100 mph. It was also the first of the three models to be known later as the Big Healeys in comparison with the smaller Austin-Healey Sprite, for example.
The first 100s, series BN1, were fitted with 2660 cc I4 engines and manual transmission, just like the Austin A90 but the transmission was modified to be a three-speed unit with overdrive in second and top gears. Girlng 11 in drum brakes were fitted all round and the front suspension was independent, using coil springs, while the rear featured a rigid axle with semi elliptic leaf springs. Steering was cam and lever. On testing, a BN1 reached a top speed of 106 mph and could accelerator from 1-60 mph in 11.2 seconds. Fuel consumption was recorded at 22.5 mpg. The test car was priced at £1063, included taxes. The BN1 was replaced by the BN2 in 1955, having recorded sales of 10030 vehicles.
In 1:43 scale, our Austin-Healey 100 BN1 comes with hood up, sporting a pale blue body and dark blue contrasting roof. The interior is the same dark blue. Registered OOM 552, the model also features realistic silver wire wheels with wheel centres, wipers, bumpers and radiator vacuum plated silver.
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