1969 Austin Maxi: Road Test

Something old, something new! Archibald Vicar, Dip. Eng. tries the latest sensation from BLMC, the Austin Maxi.

Image: veikl

From “Today’s Driver” February 1969. Photography by Patrick Lamperay. Due to liquid spillage to the original negative source, stock photos have been used.
Editor’s note: This transcript of the Archie Vicar original first appeared on Driven to Write in November 2013. 

There it was, an Austin Maxi, Leyland’s latest motor car. And we were in Dublin, Eire, to test it. It was eight o’clock in the morning and photographer, Lamperey, and I were at British Leyland’s small factory in the middle of what was once the Empire’s second city. While I ought to have been taking in the generalities of the Maxi’s technicalities I was more cognisant of my rather delicate physical state, that of a rotten hangover.

Said hangover was largely as a result of my failed attempt to anaesthetise myself during the festival of mal de mer that was the ferry from Holyhead to Dublin. The duty-free Guinness was at least remarkably cheap so the experience was merely disagreeable and not costly. I was also able to Continue reading “1969 Austin Maxi: Road Test”

Maxi Twist

BLMC’s ill-starred 1969 confection still casts a max-sized shadow.

Image: wroom.com

History judges Austin’s troubled hatchback pioneer harshly. Orthodoxy tells us ADO14 was a terrible motor car – ungainly, ill-conceived, introduced with a litany of serious flaws, failing to even approach its commercial aspirations. Its introduction was repeatedly delayed, with serious concern being expressed over its styling, driveability, power output, commercial viability and basic fitness for purpose.

For the second time since the two businesses were merged, British Leyland’s Donald Stokes took the momentous decision to Continue reading “Maxi Twist”