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Re: MG 1100, Farina Magnettes- Different?

Subject: Re: MG 1100, Farina Magnettes- Different?
From: (Denise Thorpe)
Date: Thu, 9 Nov 95 15:04:08 PST
Ray, the gibbons from the northpole commented:

> On Thu, 9 Nov 1995, Denise Thorpe wrote:
> > I've never _heard_ of a Farina Magnette.  I thought the 1100 was _the_
> > sedan offered in the days of B's and Midgets.  It must be one of those
> > cars that never made it over here.  There's really no way of establishing 
> > a value for a one-of-a-kind car.  The value is what the market, if there 
> > is one, will bear and what the owner will accept (as is true of all cars).
> > I've heard Farina described as a coachbuilder, so it's possible that the
> > Farina Magnette has the same relationship to the MG company as the Arnholt 
> > (sp?) bodied TD (TF?).
> Denise, 
> You are going to think I am just sitting here waiting for you.  I
> swear, I'm not, I'm just taking a break.  

That's too bad because I'm sitting here waiting for you.

> The Farina Magnette was a
> production car, and was imported here; Farina Magnette is just a shorthand
> reference to the last Magnette (at least the last I can remember being
> imported).  The years would be late 50s OR early 60s--anyway the successor
> to the Z series.  The Magnette was restyled with fins and chrome, with the
> assistance of the coachbuilder Farina.  You have probably seen them 
> without hearing the Farina nickname.

I've seen some pretty ugly cars in my time -- I used to own a Daimler SP250
Dart, but I've never seen anything as nasty as you're describing.  Maggets
are bad enough without fins and chrome.

> I think there were two Farinas in coachbuilding; I suspect the one
> referred to was Pinin Farina, later spelled as one word.  There was an
> Austin variant with identical body but different grille and trim.  They
> were both nice family sedans.  Farina did a lot of design consulting for
> production cars.  I think he did the design for the Nash of the mid 50s,
> as well as the design for at least one of the Nash Healeys.  

_Nash_ Healey?!  That guy was sleeping in too many different beds.  I 
wonder why he always gets second billing.

> Seems to me
> he may have had a hand in the design of your beloved 1100s, but I could
> easily be wrong about that.  

The Mini people claim that the 1100 was designed by the same guy who 
designed the Mini -- Sir Igonissossissoss, or some such thing.  Of course,
they may have been referring to the mechanicals.  But if the 1100 was
designed by somebody who put fins on a Magget, that would explain the 
goofy little fins on the 1100.  Did he design the early Sunbeam Alpine?  
One of my favorite parts of the MG 1100 are the bat (maybe airplane) wings 
on the trunk lid.  I've always called my black 1100 "the Batmobile."

> He did design a smaller Austin the name of
> which escapes me (A40???)--it was a very early hatchback. 

I suspect that this mystery can only be unravelled by someone who's
actually read a book about this or maybe lives where these cars were made.

Denise Thorpe

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