CC Capsule: Austin Seven – Size Isn’t Everything

Meet the UK’s Model T.

The Austin Seven was produced in the United Kingdom from 1922 to 1939, and a version was also manufactured and sold here as the American Austin, and later as the American Bantam.  (You may recall American Bantam as being the company that came up with the original Jeep design.)

Several manufacturers (such as BMW and Datsun) used the Seven as the basis of their own first cars, under license and otherwise.

Though this was basic transportation, it has a nice overall look to it, with what I think are good proportions.  The tires fill out the wheel wells nicely, and the two-tone blue over black lends an understated flair.

The engine is an undersquare 747 cc side-valver making 10.5 horsepower, which sounds useless until you realize the entire car weighs in at just under 800 pounds, low enough to make a Miata want to visit Weight Watchers.  I’m still trying to figure out the distributor drive system…

Maybe it’s just the well-dressed owner, but I wouldn’t mind arriving onto the scene in a Seven.  Cars don’t have to be large to be interesting, and this Seven proves it!

(Thanks once again to CCer Bryce for the interesting photos!)