Our Austin A40 Farina, 'Xuri'

Our Austin A40 Farina, 'Xuri'

So many have asked about our A40 Farina that we thought we’d do a Blog post about him. When we acquired 'Xuri' a few years ago he touched on Alfies heart strings because of his cute, Italian stylist guided, shape and mine too because my Grandfather had one, which my Dad maintained for him. Amongst the Cortinas, 1100's, Oxfords that visited the garage, that little Farina always seemed cute, pert and ready for its next mission with a cheeky exhaust note that promised a zest that was a bit of a fib. Its two box styling was to become the standard just a few years later as the hatchbacks started to dominate in the workshop, Golfs, Chevettes, Sunbeams and Fiestas heralded an era of manx tails.

‘Xuri’ has had no welding done to the body and must therefore be one of the most original A40 Farinas in existence. The reason for the absence of rust and very low mileage (36,000) is because he lived in a private collection in Norfolk for a long, long time. He suffered from sitting under glass in that the paint faded and the rubber perished, but the controlled atmosphere protected his steelwork very well from moisture. The collection was eventually dispersed and Xuri was purchased by an elderly Gentleman who took off all the trim for his son (a car refinisher) to restore the paint and there it remained, parked in the corner of the bodyshop for another long period. There followed a transaction where the former owners son clearly thought we were insane for buying him and my son thought they we insane for selling him, so happy souls in both parties.

Alfie brought the paint back up to useable condition and changed out the fuel tubing, screen rubbers*, tyres, wipers eg any perished rubber items but the only metal that we replaced was the tank to engine bay fuel pipe which looked corroded enough not to be safe. We also added a relay for the desirable optional foglamp to improve electrical safety, but for the most part he is as he left the factory. The only thing lacking at present is that one of the wing mirrors was missing. If anyone has one of the correct type they’d like to sell us, we’d love to hear from you. Message us at the foot of the page please!

Some of the more notable trips Xuri has been on were from where we’re based in the East Midlands to Kent for a family wedding, Bicester Heritage several times for the Sunday Scramble and the West Midlands to visit family. He was honoured to be asked by the A40 Farina club to appear on their stand at the NEC classic car show and has also been exhibited at the Manchester classic show.

The A40 Farina is something of a ‘forgotten’ classic and sadly few remain of the 340+ thousand built (about 55 registered for the road in the UK apparently), yet it is amazing how many people tell us about one being in their family at some point. We’ve had several people stop us to say they learnt to drive in one. One Gentleman advised that he had one as a ‘company car’ for his sales rounds, which indicates the more genteel pace in the 1960’s as Xuri is not exactly Mr Speedy, though he sits at 65 happily unless there is a headwind or incline, in which case turning off the heater blower and leaning forward seems to help. We are tempted to put a 1275A+ engine in him but he is so original we keep bottling out. Only the twin carbs would give it away - and the turn of speed! A lot of ‘Spridget’ parts bolt on so you can upgrade suspension, engine and brakes cheaply and easily. Xuri though, seems happy staying original.

If Xuri was ever part of your life please drop us a line, a lot of his history was lost when the collection he was in was disposed of at auction and we'd love to fill in the gaps.

*The A40 Farina club is very dedicated and is steadily recommissioning spares, we thoroughly recommend joining them if you have an interest in this model. Click here to visit their website.

 

 

Tags: Austin A40 Farina


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