Morris Marina/Ital

Unashamedly created as Cowley’s Cortina, the Marina was to lead Morris – and more importantly, British Leyland – into a new decade of Ford bashing. However, it missed the bus in terms of size and engine range, and because there was no budget to replace it, the Marina remained in production for far too long.

The cars : Morris Marina/Ital development history

The cars : Morris Marina/Ital development history

Unashamedly created as Cowley’s Cortina, the Marina was to lead Morris – and more importantly, British Leyland – into a new decade of Ford bashing… However, it missed the bus in terms of size and engine range, and because there was no budget to replace it, the Marina remained in production for far too long… […]

By September 3, 2011 31 Comments Read More →
Essay : Morris Marina – How well did it sell?

Essay : Morris Marina – How well did it sell?

Now widely seen as a joke car by the general public, who misunderstood the market it was aimed at, the Morris Marina sold well in comparison with its British Leyland stablemates. How successful was it, though, and how did it match up to expectations and its main competition? Ian Nicholls reveals all. The car that could be king […]

By June 17, 2014 52 Comments Read More →
Blog : To think it’s less than 20 years ago…

Blog : To think it’s less than 20 years ago…

Keith Adams Reading through my back issues of CAR Magazine to research a feature about the Jaguar X300, I unearthed a brilliant piece that I’d forgotten all about. Back in 1994, TV journalist Michael Kirsch had trekked into the war zone of Bosnia-Herzegovina to extricate three locals who’d saved his life a year previously and […]

By November 30, 2013 9 Comments Read More →
Video : Morris Marina advert (1971)

Video : Morris Marina advert (1971)

Beauty with brains behind it… The Morris Marina was to be the bright white Knight of the recently created British Leyland Motor Corporation when it hit the market in 1971 – this advert did a great job of making it seem sexy enough to entice Britain’s hard-working sales reps. Would you think any manufacturer would […]

By September 20, 2012 15 Comments Read More →
eBay Find of the Week : Morris Ital time-capsule for sale

eBay Find of the Week : Morris Ital time-capsule for sale

Keith Adams Never, ever underestimate the ability for our classic car market to turn up some amazing barn find cars. We recently told you about a Rover 200 with 12 miles on the clock which was up for sale and this Morris Ital will seem positively mileagey in comparison, having covered 300 miles – but, for those who […]

Not their finest hour : Morris Marina and Ital

Not their finest hour : Morris Marina and Ital

We take another lighthearted look at some of the cars which will be forever remembered for all the wrong reasons. Mike Humble takes another journey back in time and recalls the car which should have put him off BL related products for life, but instead, got him hooked…. The Morris Marina and Ital. Practical classic, […]

By February 17, 2012 101 Comments Read More →
Blog : Bent-Eight Marinas

Blog : Bent-Eight Marinas

Ian Elliott In the recent thread about 2-litre Itals/Marinas, the subject of V8-engined Marinas was brought up. If I have rambled about this in any previous AROnline submission, I apologise, but here goes: Stuffing V8s into small, unsuspecting family cars is a long-practiced amusement of the hot-rodding fraternity, and the more unlikely the starting point, […]

By February 10, 2012 46 Comments Read More →
Also known as : Morris Marina

Also known as : Morris Marina

In this gallery, we take a look at some of the names used to sell various versions of the Morris Marina in overseas markets, plus one that didn’t quite make it… Of course, as those of you who have visited the BMC 1100/1300 page in this gallery will already know, the Marina featured here was […]

By August 28, 2011 1 Comments Read More →
Engines : O-Series

Engines : O-Series

The O-Series was designed to act as the company’s mid-range engine mainstay for the late 1970s and beyond. If at first you don’t succeed… The formation of Austin-Morris from the ashes of BMC in 1969 allowed BLMC’s product planners to focus on the demands of the middle market, without worrying too much about the more […]

By August 26, 2011 4 Comments Read More →
Engines : B-Series

Engines : B-Series

The B-Series engine started out as a humble 1.2-litre unit that powered the Austin A40 Devon. Over time, it was developed – and developed – and developed. Middle-market mainstay After the end of World War II, Austin and Morris continued to rely on pre-war engines for their mid-range family cars. Out of the two companies, […]

By August 26, 2011 1 Comments Read More →
Concepts and prototypes : Morris Marina

Concepts and prototypes : Morris Marina

In 1967, Joe Edwards of BMH managed to secure the services of Roy Haynes from Ford as a stylist at the new BMH/Pressed Steel styling studios at Cowley in Oxford. Haynes had previously successfully styled the Ford Cortina MkII and he applied the style of this design to his new project, ADO28 – what was […]

Concepts and prototypes : ADO77

Concepts and prototypes : ADO77

The Morris Marina was conceived in a hurry, but designers consoled themselves in the fact that it was only going to last five or six years… Here we reveal pictures of the ADO77, and discuss why it never came into fruition. Missing Marina THE trouble with developing and launching a car in a hurry is […]

In production : Morris Marina

During the development of the Marina, it was decided that the Cowley plant in Oxford needed an overhaul – the result was that the production line was completely gutted, giving the plant the capability of producing some 5000 cars per week. These photographs were taken to demonstrate just how much of Cowley was all-new, and […]

Tested : Maxi, Marina and rivals

Taken from the first-ever issue of What Car? magazine This 1973 test makes fascinating reading, and is a great insight into how road tests used to be. The repmobiles compared Comparison between the Maxi, Marina and rivals Ten years ago the average man in the street would have been happy with a Mini, Imp or […]

Morris Marina/Ital : The Austins

Morris Marina/Ital : The Austins

The car known in the UK as the Morris Marina was sold as the Austin Marina in a number of overseas markets, including the US, Canada and South Africa. USA Canada South Africa South African Marina brochure Marina brochure supplied by John Shepherd

Morris Marina/Ital : E-Series powered in Australia

Morris Marina/Ital : E-Series powered in Australia

A question that is often asked by Marina enthusiasts is why-oh-why did the Australian version of the car use the Maxi E-Series engine, instead of the B-Series, as used in the UK. We posed this question to ex-Leyland Australia Operations manager, Merv Sheather and former Leyland Australia Parts Manager, Phil West. The answers were enlightening… […]

The converters : Mumford Marina Utility

The converters : Mumford Marina Utility

Mumfords of Plymouth offered several variations on the Marina theme: the convertible, a natty caravanette version, and this – the Utility. The all-year round Marina Side view of the Mumford Utility. The estate-from-cdv conversion was quite a popular phenomenom during the 1970s, and it is not difficult to see why when one views the low […]

The converters : Mumford Marina Convertible

The converters : Mumford Marina Convertible

The Marina coupe had the potential to make a very attractive convertible, but it had a fundamental flaw… The open-top Marina Crayford devised this conversion based on the 2-door Marina coupe following an approach by Plymouth-based BL dealers Mumfords. The coupŽ’s rakish lines should have lent themsleves to an attractive drop-top car, but Crayford’s hands […]

Morris Marina/Ital : Huandu CAC6430

Outwardly, it looked like an Ital with a nicer looking front bumper, but underneath, it sported a new chassis. The Huandu was built in Western China and proved fairly ubiquitous in its own part of the country… The following account was written for this site by Erik van Ingen Schenau, of the China Motor Vehicle […]

Blog : Why I love the Two Ronnies

Blog : Why I love the Two Ronnies

Keith Adams Just like washed out Bank Holiday weekends and warm beer, there’s something quintessentially English about the Two Ronnies. So who better to advertise that most English of car ranges, the Austin-Morris line-up from 1981. Would you be persuaded to jump into an Ital after watching this little advert? I probably would, but then […]