[Healeys] Number of Center-change BN7s
Patrick & Caroline Quinn
p_cquinn at tpg.com.au
Sat Jun 20 19:22:45 MDT 2020
An interesting question that doesn’t revolve around mechanical bits and pieces.
I don’t think anyone has a definitive answer to the question of centre-shift Mk2 BN7s. The numbers I quoted last night came from Original Austin-Healey by Anders Ditlev Clausager which was published in 1990. Back then Anders was the archivist for the BMIHT and had access to all the build cards and in writing the book would have gone through them all.
It’s interesting to note the numbers on page 90 of the book as while the cars for 1961 are bundled together, there is no differentiation between side-shift to centre-shift in the 214 Mk2 BN7s built in that year. For 1962 there were 141 built and all these were fitted with centre shift gearboxes with 12 built in RHD. Of the 12, nine stayed in the UK (five became Rally cars) and three exported. There are two in Australia (HBN7/18442 and HBN7/18884) with the former sold new here and the latter being a personal export to New York for a member of the Australian consulate and eventual export to Australia. I As to the other one I think it went to New Zealand, but was recent sold back into the UK.
Bill Emerson’s book was first published in 2002 and the same figures are mention as are in the Clausager book.
Yes the Mk2 Roadster didn’t sell all that well. Why? Probably because the news was out about the new rain-tight BJ7 was about to be release and in fact the two models were built concurrently and would have been on some showroom floors together. The other factor was that buyers had little people and the selfishness of a two-seater car couldn’t be countered.
Unless someone is prepared to do what Clausager did and go through the build cards from November 1961 through to the last Mk2 Roadster, we are unlikely to deduce an accurate figure of the number of centre-shift Mk2 Roadsters built.
Thank you for the brain exercising on a Sunday morning.
Blue Mountains, Australia
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