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During the design of any new car, it is vitally important for manufacturers to build prototypes at various stages of development. Prototypes are built as closely as possible to the same production methods used to build the finished vehicle. This is important as it assists with assessing the cost of building versus the retail price.

Below you'll find a collection of ADO16 prototype proposals... We're just grateful that some of these were confined to the scrap!

Approximately 1958 - Alex Issigonis had made his vision clear, "Town, City and Motorway" cars were what the buying public wanted. The town car was the Mini, as it was small, and easy to park. City cars would be the 1100 range, while the 1800 was the Motorway car. This proposal was a scaled down vesion of the 1800, but it wa scrapped as it looked too much like the Mini.

Approximately 1958 - The larger Mini prototype above is slowly changing. Although still early on in the process, the overall shape is still very similar to the Mini. Perhaps this was the basis for the Elf & Hornet?

Still in 1958, this in house prototype prompted the comissioning of Pininfarina to re-design the whole car. Reg Job is quoted as saying "it is plain and uninteresting", and how right he was too!

1959, Pininfarina is on hand to give BMC much needed assitance with the ADO16. The front end looks rather flat and fiddly and the are rather square. This idea was thrown out by BMC because it was thought it would be too costly to put into production - and judging by that front end... it's hardly surprising to see how they came to that conclusion!

By the middle of 1959, ADO16 was beginning to resemble the launch product. A good proportion of design features are there, albeit needing further tweaks to bring them up to the finished article. Are those sloping fins I see at the rear?

July 1959 saw Pininfarina's third attempt at creating ADO16. Again, this prototype is nearer the finished article, but the door frames would undergo further changes before final production.

October 1960 and this version is snapped outside a motor show. The boot appears to be hinged like the mini, rear lights are like those to MG Magnette, hubcaps look like they've been taken from a Morris Minor and the fuel filler neck is situated on the drivers side. One also wonders why the front end looks rather bulbous?

Innocenti(?) three box

This curious looking proposal dates from circa 1969. Very little information is known about the proposal, even the project name is a mystery. This threebox design is very conventional, but very appealing when executed in this way. The rear section looks very similar to that of the early Ford Escort, and the door handles, bumpers and side repeater lamps appear to be similar to those fitted to other Innocenti models, hence why we believe it is an Innocenti model.



This page was last modified on Saturday, 14th January, 2017 @ 20:07:06 CET