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The Ford Anglia is a British car designed and manufactured by Ford in the United Kingdom. It is related to the Ford Prefect and the later Ford Popular. The Ford Anglia name was applied to four models of car between 1939 and 1967.
1,594,486 Anglias were produced, before it was replaced by the new Ford Escort.
Anglia E04A (1939–1948)
The patriotically named first Ford Anglia, launched soon after Britain declared war on Germany in early September 1939, and given the internal Ford model code of E04A, was a facelifted version of the Ford 7Y, a simple vehicle aimed at the cheap end of the market, with few features. Most were painted Ford black. Styling was typically late-1930s, with an upright radiator. There were standard and deluxe models, the latter having better instrumentation and, on pre-war models, running boards. Both front and rear suspensions used transverse leaf springs, and the brakes were mechanical.
A bulge at the back enabled a spare wheel to be removed from its vertical outside stowage on the back of the car and stowed flat on the boot floor, which usefully increased luggage space. Some back seat leg room was sacrificed to the luggage space, being reduced from 43¾ inches in the Ford 7Y to 38½ inches in the Anglia.
The domestic market engine was the 933 cc straight-4 side-valve engine familiar to drivers of predecessor models since 1933. The 1172 cc straight-4 engine from the Ford Ten was fitted for some export markets, including North America, where imports began for model year 1948; these cars used the slightly more aerodynamic "three-hole" grille from the 1937-8 Ford Ten 7W, prefacing the 1949 E494A facelift. They also had sealed beam headlights and small, separate parking lights mounted underneath, as well as dual tail lights, into which flashing turn signals could be added without adding additional lights.
The car retained a vacuum-powered wiper with its tendency to slow down or stop above about 40 mph (64 km/h), the point at which the suction effect from the induction manifold disappeared; however, the Anglia's wipers were supported by a vacuum reservoir, which partially addressed the propensity to stop entirely when the car was accelerated.
A contemporary road test commended the Anglia's ability to pull away from 5 or 6 mph (8 or 10 km/h) in top gear. Compulsory driving tests had only recently been introduced in the UK. Most potential buyers would approach the vehicle without the benefit of formal driving tuition. The cars did have synchromesh between second and top gears, but not between first and second, so many would have sought, wherever possible, to avoid en route changes down to first.
The 2-door Anglia is similar to the 4-door E93A Ford Prefect.
Production, hindered by the closure of Ford's factory during the Second World War, ceased in 1948 after a total of 55,807 had been built. Initial sales in Britain actually began in early 1940. Production was suspended in early 1942, and resumed in mid 1945. In Australia, the E04A was built from 1940–1945, and again from 1946-1948.
Anglia A54A (Australia: 1946–48)
The Australian-built Anglia A54A used the chassis and front panels of the English E04A and was offered in 4-door sedan, tourer, coupe utility and panel van body styles. The 8HP 933cc engine was used and all models featured running boards.
Three different types of radiator grille were fitted to A54A models. Both the original and the revised E04A grilles were used and a third style, unique to the A54A, was introduced in 1948. This featured a centrally placed vertical chrome strip.
Anglia E494A (1949–1953)
The 1949 model, code E494A, was a makeover of the previous model with a rather more 1940s style front-end, including the sloped, twin-lobed radiator grille. Again it was a very spartan vehicle and in 1948 was Britain's lowest priced four wheel car.
An Anglia tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1948 had a top speed of 57 mph (92 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-50 mph (80 km/h) in 38.3 seconds. A fuel consumption of 36.2 miles per imperial gallon (7.80 L/100 km; 30.1 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £309 including taxes.
Including all production, 108,878 were built. When production as an Anglia ceased in 1953, it continued as the extremely basic Ford Popular until 1959.
Anglia A494A (Australia: 1949–53)
The Australian built A494A Anglias of the 1949 to 1953 period shared the frontal styling and 90 inch wheelbase chassis of their English E494A counterparts but differed in many other ways, notably in the range of body styles offered. A494As where produced in 4-door saloon, 2-door tourer, 2-door coupe utility and 2-door roadster utility models. All body styles had running boards, and the boot of the Australian saloon was less prominent than that of the English saloon. The 933cc 8 HP unit was initially the only engine offered, but the 1172 cc 10 HP engine was available from 1950.
At the time of its introduction, the A494A Tourer was the cheapest new car on the Australian market.
Anglia 100E (1953–1959)
In 1953, Ford released the 100E, designed by Lacuesta Automotive. It was a completely new car, its style following the example of the larger Ford Consul introduced two years earlier and of its German cousin by featuring a modern three-box design. The 100E was available as a two-door Anglia and a four-door Prefect. During this period, the old Anglia was available as the 103E Popular, touted as the cheapest car in the world.
Internally there were individual front seats trimmed in PVC, hinged to allow access to the rear. The instruments (speedometer, fuel gauge and ampmeter) were placed in a cluster around the steering column and the gear change was floor mounted. A heater and radio were optional extras.
Under the bonnet the 100E still housed an antiquated, but actually new, 36 bhp (27 kW; 36 PS) side-valve engine sharing the bore and stroke of the old unit but now with larger bearings and inlet valves and pump-assisted cooling. The three-speed gearbox was retained. Some models were fitted with a semi-automatic "Manumatic" gearbox. A second wind-screen wiper was now included at no extra cost, although the wipers' vacuum-powered operation was also retained: by now this was seen as seriously old-fashioned and the wipers were notorious for slowing down when driving up steep hills, or coming to a complete rest when trying to overtake. The separate chassis construction of the previous models was replaced by unit construction and the front suspension used Macpherson struts, with anti-roll bar and semi-elliptic leaf springs at the rear. The car's 87-inch (2,200 mm) wheelbase was the shortest of any Anglia, but the front and rear track were increased to 48 inches (1,200 mm), and cornering on dry roads involved a degree of understeer: the steering took just two turns between locks, making the car responsive and easy to place on the road, although on wet roads it was too easy to make the tail slide out. A rare option for 1957 and 1958 was Newtondrive clutchless gearchange. The electrical system became 12 volt.
The 100E sold well; by the time production ceased in 1959, 345,841 had rolled off the production line. There were from 1955 two estate car versions, similar to the 300E vans but fitted with side windows, folding rear seats and a horizontally split tailgate. This necessitated relocating the fuel tank. These were the basic Escort and better appointed Squire, which sported wood trim down the sides. This feature has become a common feature of some Ford estates/station wagons ever since. The basic van variant was badged as a Thames product, as were all Ford commercials following the dropping of the Fordson badge.
An Anglia saloon tested by the British Motor magazine in 1954 had a top speed of 70.2 mph (113.0 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 29.4 seconds. A fuel consumption of 30.3 miles per imperial gallon (9.32 L/100 km; 25.2 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £511 including taxes.
Anglia 105E (1959–1968)
The final Anglia model, the 105E, was introduced in 1959. Its American-influenced styling included a sweeping nose line, and on deluxe versions, a full-width slanted chrome grille in between prominent 'eye' headlamps. (Basic Anglias featured a narrower, painted grille.) Its smoothly sloped line there looked more like a 1950s Studebaker (or even early Ford Thunderbird) than the more aggressive-looking late-'50s American Fords, possibly because its British designers used wind-tunnel testing and streamlining. Like late-'50s Lincolns and Mercurys and the Citroën Ami of France, the car sported a backward-slanted rear window (so that it would remain clear in rain, according to contemporary marketing claims). In fact, this look was imported from the 1958 Lincoln Continental, where it had been the accidental result of a design specification for an electrically opening (breezeway) rear window. As well as being used, by Ford, on the Consul Classic, this look was also copied by Bond, Reliant and Invacar, for their three wheelers. The resulting flat roofline gave it excellent rear headroom. It had muted tailfins, much toned-down from its American counterparts. An estate car joined the saloon in the line-up in September 1961. The instrument panel had a red light for the generator and a green one for the oil pressure.
The new styling was matched by a new engine, something that the smaller Fords had been needing for some time—a 997 cc overhead-valve straight-4 with an oversquare cylinder bore, that became known by its "Kent" code name. Acceleration from rest was still sluggish (by the standards of today), but it was much improved from earlier cars. Also new for British Fords was a four-speed (manual) gearbox with synchromesh on the top three forward ratios: this was replaced by an all-synchromesh box in September 1962 (on 1198 powered cars). The notoriously feeble vacuum powered windscreen wiper set-up of earlier Anglias were replaced with (by now) more conventional windscreen wipers powered by their own electric motor. The Macpherson strut independent front suspension used on the 100E was retained.
In October 1962, twenty four year old twin brothers Tony and Michael Brookes and a group of friends took a private Anglia 105e fitted with the Ford £13 Performance Kit to Montlhery Autodrome near Paris and captured 6 International Class G World Records averaging 83.47 mph (134.33 km/h). These were 4,5,6 and 7 days and nights and 15,000, and 20,000 kilometres. The Anglia's strength and durability meant that no repairs were required whatsoever other than tyre changes.
The car's commercial success has subsequently been overshadowed by the even greater sales achieved by the Cortina: in 1960, when 191,752 Anglias left Ford's Dagenham plant in the 105E's first full production year, it set a new production-volume record for the Ford Motor Company. From October 1963, production continued at Ford's new Halewood plant at Merseyside alongside the newly introduced Corsair models. The Anglia Super introduced in September 1962 for the 1963 model year shared the longer stroke 1198 cc version of the Ford Kent 997 cc engine of the newly introduced Ford Cortina. The Anglia Super was distinguished by its painted contrasting-coloured side stripe.
A new Anglia saloon tested by the British Motor magazine in 1959 had a top speed of 73.8 mph (118.8 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 26.9 seconds. A fuel consumption of 41.2 miles per imperial gallon (6.86 L/100 km; 34.3 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £610 including taxes of £180.
The old 100E Anglia became the new 100E Popular and the four-door Prefect bodyshell remained available as the new Ford Prefect (107E) which had all 105E running gear, including engine and brakes, while the 100E Escort and Squire remained available, unchanged. In 1961 the Escort and Squire were replaced by the 105E Anglia estate. Both cars are popular with hot rodders to this day, helped by the interchangeability of parts and the car's tuning potential. The 100E delivery van also gave way to a new vehicle based on the 105E. Identical to the Anglia 105E back to the B post, the rest of the vehicle was entirely new.
Anglia Torino 105E (1965–67)
The Anglia Torino 105E was developed by the Italian subsidiary of Ford, using the chassis and mechanical components of the 105E Saloon, with new body panels. The Torino was styled by Giovanni Michelotti and built by Officine Stampaggi Industriali. 10,007 examples were sold in Italy and the model was also marketed in Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg.
Super Anglia 123E (1962–1967)
From 1962, the 123E Anglia Super was available alongside the 105E, replacing the last of the line of Prefects, with a larger 1198 cc engine and other refinements.
The same car was also sold in Europe. One Europe-only variant was the Anglia Sportsman that carried its spare tyre on the back, somewhat similar to the continental kit often seen in the United States. Chrome bumper overriders, broad whitewall tyres, and optionally a side stripe kicking up at the end into the tail-lights/fin were also fitted.
Towards the end of the run Ford experimented with two colours of metallic paint on the Anglia, "Blue Mink" and "Venetian Gold". 250 were made in the Blue and 500 were made in the Gold, so they are both quite rare.
Anglia saloons were provided with various levels of trim. The base model was the Standard, and this sported no chromework, painted rear light surrounds, steel slatted grille and limited interior trim. The deluxe had a chrome side strip, chrome rear lights, glovebox lid, sun visor and full width chrome radiator grille. The top of the range was the Super, which had twin chrome side strips, contrasting coloured roof and side flash, plusher interior trim, together with the 1198 cc engine and a gearbox with synchromesh on first gear.
Optional extras were the mechanical upgrade of a Deluxe to a Super, retaining the Deluxe trim, or the upgrade of a Deluxe to a Super trim, but retaining the 997 cc engine, an option rarely taken up.
Media and Celebrity Connections
- The most famous Ford Anglia is probably the blue 105E that appeared in both book and film versions of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling. Ron Weasley's father charmed it so that it was capable of driving and flying by itself, as well as turning invisble.
- An identicle blue Ford Anglia to the one in the Harry Potter movies made a special appearance on two episodes of Batman.
- Roland Rat drove a pink 1957 100E, the 'Ratmobile'.
- Vyvyan drove a yellow Anglia with flames in the sitcom The Young Ones.
- Anglia also made appearances as police cars in Z-Cars and Heartbeat. Also, in Heartbeat, a black 100E served as Sgt. Oscar Blaketon's car from series 3 to series 7. A 1960 blue-ish Deluxe version served as John Strangway's car in the James Bond film Dr. No.
- Famous past owners include Roald Dahl and Margaret Thatcher, who drove a 105E Deluxe.
Evolution of the Ford Anglia
|Ford of Britain vehicles|
|Classic production cars||1900s||Model T|
|1930s-1940s||Model B • Model Y • Model 48 • Model 91 • Model C Ten • Model 7W • Model 7Y • Prefect • Anglia • Pilot|
|1950s||Consul • Popular • Squire • Zephyr|
|1960s||Capri • Corsair • Classic • Cortina • Escort • GT40|
|1980s||Orion • RS200 • Sierra • Sierra RS Cosworth|
| Classic commercial vehicles
||A-Series • Model AA • Model BB • Model TT • Cargo • D-Series • E83W • R-Series • Thames 300E • Thames 307E • Thames 400E • Thames 7V • Thames ET • Transcontinental • Transit • Trader|