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Homepage. This page: Photographs of Vauxhall's distinctive PA Crestas and Veloxes of the late 1950s.

1. Vauxhall PA Cresta.

This page will feature various old photographs of the Vauxhall PA, either in Velox or Cresta guise. The PA of 1957 replaced the earlier, and also chrome-laden, E-Series range, and brought with it many of the design cues prevalent in models found on the other side of the Atlantic. Glitz, fins and chrome were all the rage in the US, and inspired Vauxhall to follow suit with the PA Velox and Cresta saloons of 1957.
The first two photographs to feature Vauxhall PAs on this page came from the same source, and - coincidentally - were both printed in small format on Velox paper no less.
The first PA is a two-tone job, fitted with whitewall tyres. The first cars featured a three-piece rear screen, but in 1959 this was replaced by a one-piece wraparound affair. The one-piece rear screen can be seen on this example, registration 358 UPG (Surrey). Is this a PA Cresta, rather than a Velox?
(Please click the thumbnail to view full-size image.)
Vauxhall PA.

2. 1962 Velox.

The second photograph features a mono-tone PA, probably in black, parked outside a row of shops with a Ford Consul Classic for company. The lack of two-tone paintwork and whitewalls, suggest that TFX 363 is a 1962 PA Velox to me.
Another PA Vauxhall saloon car.

3. Rear view of a 1960 Cresta.

Classic Vauxhall Cresta registration VBX 93 was photographed in Aberystwyth, August 1962. Finished in a two-tone scheme, and fitted by this point with the wraparound one-piece rear window, it was registered early in 1960. Three Dagenham-built rivals are parked on the opposite side of the road, namely a Mk1 Consul, a 100E, and a Mk1 Zephyr Six. The white building in the background is the local town hall, therefore the location of this shot is Stryd Portland.
Rear view of a PA Cresta

4. Vauxhall Velox on Blackpool Promenade, 1966.

Destination for many planning their summer holidays in the 1960s would be Blackpool, its promenade adorned with all manner of eye-catching and vibrant decorations and illuminations. 1966 would be no exception, as portrayed in this colour photograph dating to August 1966. Printed on Kodacolor paper, also in August, there is plenty to delight the fan of classic motor-cars, Vauxhalls in particular. Nearest the camera is PA Velox registration UBA 197, quite possibly taking a break after transporting its owner(s) from their Salford home to the glitz of Blackpool. No doubt the roof rack was laden with leather cases, securely roped into position.
Behind the Vauxhall the front corner of a Mk2 Austin A55 can be seen, while driving towards the camera is a Thames 307E van and a '50s Minx.
Parked on the opposite side of the road, basking in the August sun, is a later Minx, facing a four-door Ford 100E Prefect, finished in a two-tone paintjob. A bronze-coloured Mini van lurks behind the Prefect, nosed up close to two more classic Vauxhalls - an HA Viva, and an F-Type Victor. The distinctive tail of a Mk1 Cortina, and a second F-Type can also be made out. Further interesting machines, sporting a cheerful variety of paint colours, stretch into the distance, in the direction of Blackpool's world famous tower.
Green Vauxhall Velox PA in 1960s Blackpool

5. A 1961 Vauxhall PA.

Thanks to Gregory for this photo of URJ 781, a Salford-registered two-tone PA Cresta dating to 1961.
1961 Vauxhall PA Cresta

6. 1958 Vauxhall Cresta PA.

Next, an old family photo. In it, a great uncle of mine Doug Jones is stood alongside a smart 1958 Cresta. Whether he owned WDA 797 or not, I don't know sadly. As he's stood at the passenger side of the car, and clearly had someone with him to take the photo, my suspicion is that it belonged to his companion. Also, I doubt very much that he would have shelled out for such a smart, glitzy, machine. After WW2 he worked for a number of agriculture-related businesses in mid-Wales, and worked for a time at a Ferguson tractor dealer in Hereford. It was only late on in his life that he told me of being friends with racing driver Innes Ireland in the late 1950s/early 1960s. He recalled spirited passenger rides with Ireland in a Mk2 Jaguar around the quiet roads in his locality, and told me that one time he accompanied Ireland to a race meeting (Silverstone I assume), acting as a mechanic, and managed to arrange a drive around the circuit in whatever was being raced on that occasion. Given that my great uncle wasn't given to exaggeration, I can only assume that it happened. Him and his brothers also created the International Two-Days' motorcycle trials in Wales.
(An article about a spooky coincidence relating to photos of three old cars photographed outside his property in Wales, that featured in a classic car magazine in the early 1990s, can be found on this page.)
1958 Vauxhall Cresta
Return to Page 13 in the classic & vintage car photo gallery.

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