Big and ungainly it may have looked, and it struggled to capture the imagination of the car buyers of the 1960s, but there’s no doubting the 1800/2200 was one of the most advanced cars in its class. And now read the whole story…

The cars : BMC 1800/2200 development history

Austin 1800

Big and ungainly it may have looked, and it struggled to capture the imagination of the car buyers of the 1960s, but there’s no doubting the 1800/2200 was one of the most advanced cars in its class. However, it has now matured to the point that we can look beyond those early issues, and marvel […]

Concepts and prototypes : BMC 1800/2200


The origins of ADO17 can be traced back to XC9000, the first in a series of designs produced by Alec Issigonis in 1956, following his return to BMC from Alvis. The rear-wheel-drive XC9000 prototype was developed into the front-wheel-drive XC9001, before the project was shelved in response to the Suez Crisis. The XC9001 design was […]

Carrozzeria designs : Pininfarina 1800

Pininfarina 1800

Ahead of its time This brilliant Pininfarina styling exercise was never considered for production. The running gear was pure BMC 1800, but the style was utterly unique for 1967. This BMC-Pininfarina 1800 predates the Citroën CX by seven years – one wonders how BMC may have fared had they the courage to put this beauty […]

Woodall Nicholson 1800/2200

Woodall Nicholson produced this curious-looking stretched Landcrab, along with a far more elegant hearse… THIS Austin 2200-based limousine, which had clearly seen better days, appeared on eBay at least twice during 2002/2003. All we know about it at the moment is that it was a Woodall Nicholson conversion, and that there may also have been […]

Also known as : BMC 1800/2200

In this gallery, we take a look at some of the names used to sell various versions of the BMC 1800/2200 in overseas markets… Austin Balanza Home market name: based on Austin 1800 This name (meaning balance) was used on MkI Austin 1800s sold in the Netherlands and Belgium. While it is thought to have […]

Those doors

When the ADO17 was launched as the Austin 1800 in 1964, few people can have imagined that one of its defining features – its doors – would later appear on a series of cars ranging from a 1.5-litre family hatchback to a 3-litre executive saloon. But the story doesn’t end there. As well as being […]

Buying guide : BMC 1800/2200

The final flowering of the Issigonis range, the 1800 was a large-scale Mini that failed to set the world alight. Yet these capable cars are readily affordable today. IAN SEABROOK tells you what you need to know. First published in Classic Car Weekly Availability Years produced: 1964-1975 Body style: 4-door saloon Engine options: 1798cc B-Series […]

BMC 1800/2200 : Austin 1800 Wagon

We know that BMC investigated expanded the 1800 into van, hatchback and estate versions, but never got much further than the drawing board. However, one interprising individual in Australia went ahead and built his own. Here’s the story of the fascingating Austin 1800 Wagon… A new rear is hatched IT’S often been said that the […]

BMC 1800/2200 : MG version

When badge-engineering was at its height, BMC’s middle-market cars played host to a myriad of marque names. The ADO16 and Farina saloons were the most numerous, as they were offered in Austin, Morris, MG, Wolseley, Riley and Vanden Plas versions. The larger ADO17′s shape never really lent itself well to this re-grilling, but it was […]

BMC 1800/2200 : Crayford Estate

Alongside their trademark convertibles, Crayford were beginning to produce “estate car” conversions in the 1960s, the more apposite term “hatchback” not really having been coined at this stage. The Crayford 1800 Estate offered up to 100 cu ft of load space, and could be ordered as a full conversion (seen here) for £180, or without […]

BMC 1800/2200 : Commercial derivatives

With its long wheelbase and front-wheel drive layout, the 1800 would have made the ideal starting point for a range of commercial derivatives. Sadly, only the Australians saw fit to put such a vehicle into production… Van proposal Austin 1800 Utility

BMC 1800/2200 : Austin Freeway

The ADO17 was a popular car in New Zealand – although the Freeway moniker it received is little known. Here are some pictures forwarded from site regular Marius Van Boven, taken from an online classified advert. If you know more, please get in touch. Download the original For Sale article (PDF file).