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Austin 7 Ace.

John sent both of these photographs over of a vintage Austin 7 Ace from his home in Australia. While quite a few old photographs of Austin 7s in various forms appear across the site, these are the first to feature the Australian-bodied "Ace" version, so my great thanks to John for emailing them over. This was his first car. Both photos date to 1953 or thereabouts, so the compact Austin was already well beyond its first flush of youth at the time, being built in 1929.
Import rules in place at the time led to many incomplete kits of new cars being shipped to Australia, where local coachbuilders would press their English wheels and panelbeating skills into service, bodying the new-build cars to suit local tastes and requirements. Complete new cars shipped into the country were accompanied by hefty import taxes, hence the trend for part-complete vehicles being shipped to Australia for final completion on home soil.
The stylish 747cc Austin and its fortunate owner are both present in the first snapshot. I have to say that the design of the Ace is very appealing, the split "V" windscreen is especially stylish and not something often found on Austin 7s, in the UK or elsewhere. The screen is reminiscent of that found on the M-Type MG Midget (photo), but arguably is even more neatly executed. The extra lamp mounted atop the scuttle is another neat touch, as is the side-mounted spare wheel. Also visible are the "Austin" and "Ace" script badges attached to the honeycomb radiator, and its NSW (New South Wales) registration plate.
Click to view:
John with his Austin 7 Ace
Now to the Austin's offside view, this time with the hood raised. Entry to the car's interior looks a little tight with the hood erect, however it evidently offers the driver a useful shade from the sun, once he or she has prised themself into the cockpit.
The roof is up on this rare Austin sports
Thanks again for the photos John.

Photos of a Victoria-registered example of the Austin 7 Ace.

To be honest I wasn't expecting any more period photos of an Austin 7 Ace to turn up, but several years after first posting the photos above, Richard in Australia dropped me a line with the following group of snapshots. His father bought an Ace way back in 1938. He found the car in Victoria, Australia, and paid the princely sum of 90 pounds for it (the Australian Dollar replaced the Australian Pound in 1966), at the time it was still a relatively young vehicle and I have to say, it's a great-looking little car.
This rare Austin Seven has the spare wheel mounted on the other side of the body tub, compared to the example above, and the bonnet remains in a polished aluminium (ie un-painted) state.
A Victoria-registered Austin 7 Ace
Now for a side view of the same Austin, this time with its modest roof in the raised position.
Side view of the Austin 7hp
The final shot in this trio reveals the other side of the car, roof down this time, with a young Richard just visible inside the car. Note the "7" label in the windscreen, was his father in an Austin 7 club at the time I wonder? Or is it just a coincidence, and for something else entirely?
The other side of the car
I really appreciate you sending over the photos Richard, thanks. If anyone else has similar, early, photos of an Ace (or anything else for that matter), please drop me a line.
Return to Page 18 in the photographic archive, or visit the main index here.
Plenty of different Austin 7s can be found across the site. For example, this page features the standard production Nippy, while in contrast, this page has original photographs of several different, home-built, Austin 7 Specials. This page also features what appears to be an Austin 7 Ace, albeit with different coachwork.

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