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LONDON — Nanjing Auto, the Chinese company that is reviving the MG TF roadster, plans to bring back the defunct Austin brand on a line of compact and midsize models.

According to Britain's Autocar magazine, Nanjing plans to use Austin as its budget brand. So far, there are no immediate plans to relaunch the brand in North America. Nanjing also acquired the rights to the Morris and Wolseley brands when it bought the tooling from MG Rover in 2005.

A Nanjing executive was quoted on the MG-Rover.org Web site as saying, "Austin is a fantastic brand with an enormous worldwide appeal. It has a very different heritage to MG, and this allows us to develop and market a very different range of vehicles. For this reason, I can definitely see the re-emergence of Austin in less than five years."

Nanjing, a former unit of the People's Liberation Army, has slated the world launch of the revised TF for late March. Body panels will be stamped in China, and European versions of the cars will be assembled from kits at the former U.K. MG Rover plant in Longbridge.

Lotus, which is owned by the Malaysian automaker Proton, is assisting with engineering work.

The last Austin-badged car was built and sold in Britain in 1989. Last year, Nanjing announced its plan to revive the Austin name but did not divulge details.

What this means to you: Jolly good. But what's happening with the Healey badge?

source:www.edmunds.com
 

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Maybe an Austin A40 Sports? :)


Austin A40 Sports

The A40 Sports was a small aluminum-bodied convertible version of the Austin A40 Devon. Produced from 1950 through 1953, the A40 Sports featured a 4-seat 2-door body built by Jensen. It was very similar to the Devon saloon, though it used a twin-carburettor version of the 1.2 L engine for somewhat more power.

(Info from Wikipedia)
 

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China Car Times had this story on Feb 5th -

China Car Times - Faster than a speeding bullet.
 

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Great, so AutoExpress take a quote from an online webchat with the QC manager and it's official!
The story was doing the rounds last year IIRC, and as for Healey, the Healey name are very protective of this and as with Cooper, the names are only used under licence from the families concerned.
 

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MartinW said:
and as for Healey, the Healey name are very protective of this and as with Cooper, the names are only used under licence from the families concerned.
Note my A40 sports above was an Austin sports car, not an Austin Healey - they don't need Healey, in fact why would they want Healey if they are going to make the cars themselves?
 

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chinacartimes said:
China Car Times had this story on Feb 5th -

China Car Times - Faster than a speeding bullet.
That's cheeky! :lol:
Nobody told me that shameless plug is okay here. :p
 

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Windy said:
Note my A40 sports above was an Austin sports car, not an Austin Healey - they don't need Healey, in fact why would they want Healey if they are going to make the cars themselves?
Serious question - if they don't need Healy, why do they need Austin?

These brands stopped producing for a reason. To revive the brand, you are counting on nostalgia, and nostalgia does not sell cars.

I myself had a 59 bugeye sprite - fun car. Butlet's be honest, my lawn tractor could outperform it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Rock-N-Roll said:
Serious question - if they don't need Healy, why do they need Austin?

These brands stopped producing for a reason. To revive the brand, you are counting on nostalgia, and nostalgia does not sell cars.

I myself had a 59 bugeye sprite - fun car. Butlet's be honest, my lawn tractor could outperform it.
You forget one thing. Austin is known in jst about every car driving country in the world. It's much loved in emerging markets like India. The Chinese have no recognised brands outside China of their own. So why bother investing millions trying to raise recognition and trust in a brand when you can just re-introduce an old recognised one. I know Austin has issues but frankly a brand with issues is a better starting point than a brand with no recognition, see comedy car maker Smart for more information...
 

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Rock-N-Roll said:
I myself had a 59 bugeye sprite - fun car. Butlet's be honest, my lawn tractor could outperform it.
Over here in the UK, they had a race between an old Bug Eye and some souped up bling machine with awesome horses under the bonnet on our top TV motoring show Top Gear last year, and the Bug Eye won handsomely.

Cheers. Ewan.
 
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