It’s a 1958 Morris Minor convertible!
Be prepared to get a lot of attention when you’re motoring down the road with the top down and the wind in your hair. You’ll need to get used to all the thumbs-ups, smiles, waves and picture-taking. You might even cause a few accidents, you wouldn’t be the first one.
This 1958 Morris Minor convertible reportedly has the standard 948cc, four-cylinder engine and four-speed, four-synchro manual transmission. According to the seller, the engine runs well, the clutch works fine, the transmission shifts as it should, and the brake and electrical systems are operational. Reportedly, everything works and the car needs nothing.
Has seating for four.
The red interior is reportedly in very good condition, having being redone in the past. The white convertible top was reportedly replaced about two years ago.
The black paint is reportedly the original color and said to be in fair condition. (appears a bit scruffy in the pics, mostly because it was dusty and the noon-day lighting was harsh.) Fresh pics to follow, along with multiple close-ups and shots of any glitches or cool features.
It is fitted with the standard steel wheels and hubcaps. According to the seller, the tires are in good condition, having been replaced not too long ago. The battery is said to be new, replaced about six months ago.
Originally built for the UK market, this is a true right-hand-drive (RHD) car – providing lots of fun and garnering even more attention.
Rust? It’s often said, “All British cars have rust – it’s just a question of how much and where!” Given that, this Morris Minor reportedly has only “minor” rust in the body. (More details and closeup pics to follow.)
What’s it like to drive?
It’s not quick by any means, think of it as more of a “vintage motoring experience.” It’s freeway-capable, but you’ll probably opt for the right lanes.
When starting it, it has a “hand choke” that sometimes needs fiddling with to fire up the engine. You might need your Grandpa to explain why it’s needed, but you’ll quickly pick it up.
The large-diameter steering wheel helps make up for the fact that there’s no power steering.
Air conditioning? Actually, all 1958 Morris Minors come standard with air-conditioning – it’s called the “model 2-55” air conditioning. How does it work? You roll two windows down and drive 55 miles per hour. If that doesn’t work, you can upgrade to the “2-70 model,” you just drive faster! In the case of this convertible, it has full-blast air conditioning – when you have the top down! This air conditioning system works very well on cold days, not so much on hot ones…
And a heater? Well, it sorta works, but – compared with a modern car, it’s pretty much just for looks. Defroster? The same. In fact, many classic British car drivers’ “defroster” is a white towel jammed under the seat!
What’s it like to drive a RHD car?
One might think that shifting with the left hand might be awkward, but it quickly becomes natural. What might take a bit of getting used to is the rear-view mirror, since in a typical LHD car, you look up and to the right to see the mirror, whereas in an RHD car, you look up and to your left. For this reason, many drivers more accustomed to LHD tend to use the side-view mirrors more so than the rear-view mirror. If you need to pay tolls, you may want to rig up a little stick with a cup on the end of it so you can drop in the coins. Drive-through restaurants are fun too, some cheeky RHD drivers go through the line in reverse to get the window on their side – the employees crack up!
Would it make a good daily driver?
Yes and no, but you might want to have a second car, just in case. If you absolutely, positively have to be at a certain place at a certain time – say you’re a surgeon perhaps – you may want to take the modern car that day. Handling in the rain? Compared with a modern car, it’s a bit like trying to cross an ice rink in bald tennis shoes! Take the other car that day.
Best you not be concerned with that – since any savings will just go to the cost of maintaining any vintage car. This car has parts that modern cars haven’t had in a long time – such as carburetors, ignition points and valves that need adjusting. If you’re handy with basic tools, great manuals are available, as well as online resources, forums and clubs. Parts are readily available, and not very pricey. For some Morris Minor owners, the tinkering is part of the fun!
Have we talked you out of buying a car that will put a silly stupid grin on your face whenever you drive it?
If so, for the asking price, you could always pick up a used Toyota Camry, Ford Focus or Hyundai.
But, if you’re ready for some fun, you owe it to yourself to take a test-drive.
Located in Santa Monica, CA.
Nationwide, door-to-door transport available. We can also help arrange very thorough, independent pre-purchase evaluations by qualified classic British car specialists. Escrow and title-transfer services also available.(Contact us for quotes and details.)
[ ID# MINOR4U ] Asking: $9,000.
Note that this classic car has New York “registration,” essentially a receipt which serves as the title when applying for title in another state. Typically, no big deal. In California, usually all that’s required is a VIN verification, available at the DMV, or AAA if you don’t want to wait in lines.
Re: Emissions testing
In most states, because of the age, a 1958 Morris Minor would be exempt from emissions testing, but you’ll need to verify that.
For any classic car – including Morris Minors – you might consider, we STRONGLY recommend you take it to a British car or Morris Minor specialist for a very thorough, independent, pre-purchase mechanical evaluation. It might run you $150-$200 for a thorough written report – but it’s money well spent if it helps avoid a turkey, a money-pit, or a car that’s not as represented. If nothing else, it will help you learn what to look for in the next one you might be considering. Trust us, spend the money – you’ll thank us later.
Unfortunately, it’s very common to see Morris Minor “convertibles” that didn’t leave the factory as convertibles – but are converted “saloons,” meaning the regular two-door coupes. While this will definitely impact its collector value – it may also be unsafe if the proper chassis-strengthening engineering hasn’t been done. Be very careful, have a Morris Minor expert check it out. In some cases, only the VIN may indicate if it’s a true convertible.
FINE PRINT: MiniGuy / Lewis Motors makes no representations as to the accuracy of any seller’s listings on our “Consignment – For Sale by Owner” pages, including but not limited to, physical or mechanical condition of vehicle, status of title or registration, any applicable emissions-equipment, emissions-testing or emissions-certification requirements, as well as relevant safety equipment or safety-related requirements, import status, or fitness for use. Please note that emissions or safety requirements may differ by state, region, or country. Potential buyers should consult their appropriate state or local agencies or departments to determine, among other things, the status of a particular vehicle related to the above, including vehicles that might normally be exempt from emissions testing, emissions equipment, or emissions certification requirements. For California buyers or sellers, more information may be obtained from various state and local agencies, including, but not limited to, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), the Bureau of Automotive Repairs (BAR) and the California Air Resources Board (ARB).
BOTTOM LINE: This is a case where it pays to do your homework. Be careful what you buy, you may not be able to drive it in California.Vehicle Details: