About ADO16


Owning an ADO16



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  South African market


South Africa is perhaps better known for producing the Austin Apache, but they also produce standard bodied versions of the ADO16 in the Austin 11/55 and Wolseley 11/55 guises.

BMC's motto of "Lets take things from other cars and stick them onto a new car" was working very well with the Austin version, which strangely fitted with a black crackle Morris dashboard, but a silver Austin radio blanking plate. On the exterior it shared the Morris bonnet chrome strip, and side trims taken from a plusher model such as the MG or Riley. On closer inspection of the wheels, it appears that they also had the inner rims from a Vanden Plas fitted.

The caption used on the brochure was: "Powered by 55 full-blooded horses" - is that on a good day? And are they the grand national standard horses? Both models were fitted with a 55-BHP version of the 1100 engine, fitted with a single HS4 carburettor. This giving extra power along with other modifications such as larger inlet valves, and modified air cleaner.

As with both models, they were fitted with strange reflectors on the front panels as this is law in South Africa.

The mix mash of BMC parts can be seen in the interior picture on the left. Both models were available as optional extra with Automatic transmission.

Both models continued into Mk2 form until early in 1970 when the Austin Apache was launched.

In 1970 Michelotti got to apply his magic to the ADO16. However, he almost copied the Austin Victoria, sharing the shame three box design, with the cabin area being only give away that it was your standard ADO16 with a boot and a front end grafted on.

It was built by British Leyland at Blackheath from 1971 - Until 1975.

 :: Additional information

Haven't I seen the Austin Apache somewhere else?


Good spot! You've probably seen the Austin Apache in a few other guises.

The Austin Victoria, that was produced for the Spanish market, shares a similar body shell to that of the Austin Apache.

The Triumph 1500 is where the idea came from. Take out the Triumph cabin, and slide in your ADO16 you've got yourself a replica - just about!


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