Concepts and prototypes : early LC10

LC10 was a conventional family hatchback in every sense of the word, and followed industry standard thinking in terms of mechanical layout.

However, because of internal politics, lack of resources and the fact that the Metro had to come first, the Maestro seven years to get into production.


LC10 prototype

THIS hand-built prototype was an early mule for the LC10 project. A-Series powered and demonstrating obvious space efficiency, it was true to the form. Styled by Steve Ferrada, this prototype bore no resemblance to the final product – although there were rumours that Bertone was involved…

This version of LC10 appears to have Spen King's fingerprints all over it. Even before the Ian Beech styling had been implemented, you can see some of the final product in this, especially around the front.

This version of LC10 appears to have Spen King's fingerprints all over it. Even before the Ian Beech styling had been implemented, you can see some of the final product in this, especially around the front.

Rear end is very minimalist indeed.

Rear end is very minimalist indeed.

Offset pedals and a minimalist dash could have you believing this was an Issigonis design. Look closely and you can see quite a bit from the BL parts bin, but one can't help but notice that there is a Maestro "vibe" here... look at the positioning and angle of the stereo slot - it is almost identical to that used in the 1983 production car.

Offset pedals and a minimalist dash could have you believing this was an Issigonis design. Look closely and you can see quite a bit from the BL parts bin, but one can't help but notice that there is a Maestro "vibe" here... look at the positioning and angle of the stereo slot - it is almost identical to that used in the 1983 production car.

There is acres of room in this prototype - almost as much in the SD1. The thin seats were obviously development only, but they did create interior space unmatched in a car of its size, even today.

There is acres of room in this prototype - almost as much in the SD1. The thin seats were obviously development only, but they did create interior space unmatched in a car of its size, even today.

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Clsssics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasable adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

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Keith Adams

About the Author:

Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007. Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Clsssics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent... Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasable adventures all across Europe.

3 Comments on "Concepts and prototypes : early LC10"

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  1. Chris Baglin says:

    Looks like someone’s tried to hotwire it…

    I didn’t think anything could be uglier than the production Maestro, but they certainly pulled out the stops to produce this hideous minger- it would defy the greatest stylists to pretty this up for production.

    Still, build quality looks good by BL standards- I like the almost straight ‘go faster’ stripes holding the front indicator on!

  2. Paul says:

    I’m not so sure. With a bit of ornamentation and without the funny window line this would have been far more in line with early 80s European styling themes than the actual Maestro.

  3. Phil Simpson says:

    I prefer the styling with the exception of the hideous surrounds to the door handles.

    A hint of Innocenti Mini about the headlights.

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