When launched in 1953, the Series 1 'Nash' Metropolitan was an American designed 'small automobile' built by Austin in Longbridge, Birmingham. Only available in left hand drive the sub compact cars, available as a 2dr hardtop or convertible, were then shipped to America. Originally powered by a four cylinder 1,200cc engine with a 3 speed manual gearbox the Metropolitan was marketed as a second car or commuter car and was targeted at women. After the first 10,000 cars were built, the Series 2 was introduced with a different engine, still 1,200cc, and a new gearbox with hydraulic clutch being some of the modifications which were produced until 1955 with the introduction of the much improved Series 3.
The Series 3, still only available at launch in left hand drive, was now fitted with the more powerful 'B' Series 1,500cc engine. Cosmetically, the sides of the cars had polished stainless steel mouldings and striking two tone paintwork was applied. The bonnet scoop was removed, the front grill re designed and inside the car the dashboard was painted gloss black where the Series 1 & 2 cars were body coloured.
In 1957, production of Series 3 Right Hand Drive vehicles started leaving the production line at Longbridge. The Nash name was dropped and they were registered as Austin Metropolitan 1500 and destined for the UK home market and sold through the Austin Dealerships. Production of the UK RHD cars ceased in early 1961 with the US cars only lasting a few months longer. In all, over 104,000 Metropolitans came off the production line at Longbridge with around 95,000 exported to the USA. Famous owners included Elvis Presley, Paul Newman, Princess Margaret and Steve Jobs.
The vehicle we are pleased to offer is one of the low production Austin Metropolitan 1500 Hardtop models supplied to the UK in Right Hand Drive.
Registered in 1959 and finished in arguably the most striking colour of Caribbean Green with contrasting Snowberry White lower panels and roof, the car is just gorgeous. In the past 58 years the car has obviously had restoration to be as good as the show winning condition it is today. In the history folder there are numerous photographs of the bodywork improvements over the years although there are many original areas still evident, particularly in the engine compartment which is also delightful. Also in the history file there are many old MOT certificates, the earliest being 1987 with 36,000 miles recorded, along with previous keeper details helping to substantiate the current low mileage of 40,000 which we have no reason to doubt.
According to 'How Many Left' there are very few cars registered in the UK and even less so registered as 'on the road'. To even see a Metropolitan on the road is a rare event, but to see one as good as this car is almost unheard of!
To view in our heated showroom please make early contact.
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