The Morris Minor 1000, truly a British Classic automobile. The one pictured here could easily have been my Grandmothers car. In point of fact, it was what caught my eye about it. I was a young lad when my Grandma used to ferry us around in one of these fabulous cars. The one here is in original condition and as such showed its 53 years. Frankly, my Grandmothers car wasn’t in such great shape even when it was relatively new and she certainly wasn’t a great driver. Using a standard transmission wasn’t exactly her forte and ‘can’t find em grind em’ was the her way of shifting…but boy could she cook a pie!
The owner of this car, Martin Ross of Canada has a love of these cars that just wont quit. Martin fell in love with the Morris Minor when he was 16 years old, when he purchased a 1959 2 door version. This car was the love of his life until it saw its demise when the oil drain plug fell out on the highway and the engine seized beyond repair.
Forty years later, in 2009, he found another Morris that brought home his teen years. His first car had twin Weber carburetors although his current purchase has only a single. Weber carbs for those who have owned these beasties are one of the most finicky carbs out there, and you quickly become expert at tuning these carbs for the various season changes. The engine he was told, when he purchased the car from the back of a car lot, was in running condition. It needed a battery and once he sourced a positive ground battery, the car did in fact run terrific. It didn’t stop, and that became the project of immediate need after purchase.
Martin has spent his time cleaning, and repairing various items. The floor boards needed a hold mended, and there was a small rust bit on the body that also need repair. Overall not that much to do to a car this old. The chrome is bright and still looks great. A lot of cleaning, and new carpet have given his baby a new lease on life. The paint is old, and will one day need a repaint no matter how much Martin would like to leave it as it is. Martin loves taking her to shows the way it stands and chatting about it.
For those that love specifications, here are a few. The inline 4 cylinder engine, all 948 cc’s (or 57.56 cid), makes a breathtaking 36.82 BHP @ 4750 rpm, and 49.95 ft-lbs torque @ 2500 rpm. The car weights just 1733 pounds, is 147.7 inches long and has a 16.48 foot turning radius. Its wheelbase is 7.1475 feet. It has drum brakes all around. As stated, its British so it has positive ground electrics. The factory claimed a top speed of 75 mph, but I think that was with a hurricane tailwind behind it. Production numbers were if you go by chassis numbers, in the 113,765 car range.
Martin picked up is baby for a mere $950. Quite steal for a good running car that only needed minor work to put it on a show basis as an original metal car. I suppose in Great Britain many of these old Morris’ survive today, but in North America it is rare to see one of these cars out in the wild. If Martin did the paint and body work, it would likely sell for $6,000 to $9,000 on the outside at auctions. Basically you get what you put in back. I wanted to borrow Martins car and relive some memories grinding away at the gears like old Grandma did so long ago… Maybe I will get chance in a Minor of my own someday. Happy Hunting!
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