Austin of England – 1945-1949 Austin 16 Station Wagons

The British have long being users of custom-bodied vehicles. Perhaps they are better known for the Park Ward or H.J. Mullner Rolls Royce’s which featured custom coachbuilt bodies, but the world of coachbuilding was really more extensively used to build commercial vehicles. The little post war Austin 16 which was originally built as a four-door sedan was soon being offered with commercial bodies by numerous coach builders including Papworth Industries in Cambridgeshire which were the only factory-authorized conversion.  The station wagon or Shooting Brake version was tagged as the Austin Countyman Estate Car. Production numbers built vary between 250 to 500 depending upon unconfirmed reports but no doubt in England at the time, with its massive shortage of new cars, these sold quite rapidly. Below we see the production line at Papworth Industries which would continue on into the 1950, building later model Austin A70 Hampshire station wagons for Austin. In fact, one of their A70 Hampshire was my first introduction to station wagons when I was five-years old in Australia. My father purchased one and from what my mother told me later on, hated every moment of owning it, because of it electrical gremlins!  Today, any of these Papworth-built wagons are extremely rare.Austin Station Wagons England

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