Introduced in 1963, the HA Viva represented the first small car to be released by Vauxhall since the war. The Viva was a car much needed by Vauxhall, it having lost ground to many competitors.
The competition in this sector was fierce, with the Ford Anglia, Morris Minor and Austin A35 battling it out for sales superiority.
The Viva was originally available in two models, the standard 'Saloon' and 'Deluxe', commanding a £32 premium at £468. Both became immensely popular, so much so that an additional production line was opened at Vauxhall's Luton facility in Bedfordshire.
The pick of these early Viva's however is the SL model, which was released in the British summer of 1965 after sales of both the Saloon and DeLuxe had exceeded 100,000.
Powering the Viva was a 1057cc 4L engine
producing 44bhp, although the SL model came with a high compression engine developing 60 bhp and capable of reaching a top speed of around 80 mph.
To identify a Deluxe over the standard Saloon model, look for a chrome strip running the entire length of the car. The SL can be spotted by its unique color flash, along with a re-designed grille and tri-design rear tail lights.
If you are lucky enough to come across an SL model, you will better appreciate the cars collectability when you learn that, of the 303,738 HA Viva's manufactured, only 11,794 SL's were amoung them.
While the HA production officially came to an end in 1966 with the release of the HB, the commercial derivatives continued on until the early 1980's.