Wolseley 24/80

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Wolseley 24/80

1962 - 1965
United Kingdom
6 cyl.
2433 cc "Blue Streak"
80 bhp
3 spd. man/auto
Top Speed:
100 mph
Number Built:
2 star
The 6 cylinder Wolseley 24/80 sedan and station wagon (also sold under the Austin name) were released in April 1962. These cars were developed by BMC Australia to counter the growing popularity of the new 6 cylinder rivals from the US, namely the GM Holden and Ford Falcon.

It is interesting to note that BMC had already determined that Australia deserved (in fact needed) a larger displacement engine.

While their cars were near identical to those sold in the UK, the Australian cars had the B Series 1622cc engine fitted 2 years prior to their UK cousins, who had to make do with the 1489cc motor.

Rather than design an entirely new 6 cylinder motor, BMC simply added an extra two cylinders on the existing 1622cc engine - bringing the capacity to 2433cc. The engine was then coupled to an adaptation of the metropolitan 3 speed gearbox.

Changes to the radiator and bonnet were required to fit the larger engine in, as were improvements to the suspension. BMC continued its tradition of creating vehicles from the parts bin of others, using rear fins taken from the Riley, and an interior taken from the Morris Oxford.

The radiator, which in the four cylinder cars was mounted behind the bonnet-locking bar, was now placed in front of the bonnet-locking bar, immediately behind the grille.

These few changes aside, picking a 24/80 over the previous 15/60 would be quite difficult for the casual observer.

The 24/80 remained externally identical to the 15/60 (except for the wheelbase, which was an inch longer), and the interior also remained virtually identical. Originally it was available only with the manual transmission, but later a Borg Warner 35 3-speed automatic transmission was offered as an option.

The Mark II was released in October 1964, and was identical in styling to the 16/60. The power was increased to 84bhp, and the interior trim was now finished in a less up-market but still soft “expanded vinyl” rather than the leather used in the earlier cars.

The Mark II was short lived however, the Austin 1800 replacing the Wolseley in BMC's Australian model line up from October 1965. Unfortunately the Mark II 24/80 was the last Wolseley to be sold new in Australia.

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Also see:

Fredrick Wolseley
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