The reaction to the surview convinced Nash that there was a market for a new small car. Since no US auto factory had the tooling or experience to build cars of this size, it was decided to produce the car in Europe. The Austin Motor Company was at that time the largest car manufacturer outside the US, and was the obvious choice in view of their reputation for quality build and engineering.
Following various design modifications, the first Metropolitans rolled off the Longbridge production line in October 1953, and went on sale in the US in the spring of 1954. Early versions were fitted with the 1,200cc Austin Somerset engines and are now easily recognisable by a ‘floating bar’ grille, and monotone body colours for body and roof. None of these early cars was released on the home (UK) market – the entire production until 1957 was for export only.
The car on offer today was originally UK registered in 1957 but was imported to Guernsey in February 1978. The current vendor bought the car in the early 1980s and was the second and only other Guernsey owner. The vendor used the car for several years, before storing the car until the mid-1990s. The current mileage is just over 37,000 miles, and the car has done less than 100 miles since the restoration, and hardly more than that in the last 20 years!!
As you can see from the pictures the car’s condition is essentially concours quality, and has regularly been ‘car of the show’ at the Guernsey Classic car show.
The restoration was carried out by J A Biggs Engineering Ltd., arguably the best restorer in Guernsey. The car’s file contains details of the work done and copies of their bills totalling just over £12,500, plus bills of $6,000 for parts from Kip Motors, of Dallas, Texas, the specialist Metropolitan parts supplier.
It was an expensive restoration, with an extensive photo record, which shows in the quality of the end result. Rarely are these charming little cars offered on the open market, particularly in such spectacular condition.
The car is registered in Guernsey and will be subject to import tax at your local country rate.
For further information or to arrange a viewing, please contact our sales department.