The Happy Frog! Ever see a happier looking face on a car in all your life? Austin Healey Sprite piccied at the Greyabbey steam and vintage car rally in August this 2011.
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Assembly Abingdon, England
Enfield, New South Wales, Australia 1
Class Sports car
Body style 2-door roadster
Layout FR layout
Related MG Midget
The Austin-Healey Sprite is a small open sports car which was announced to the press in Monte Carlo by the British Motor Corporation (BMC) on 20 May 1958, just before that year’s Monaco Grand Prix. It was intended to be a low-cost model that “a chap could keep in his bike shed”, yet be the successor to the sporting versions of the pre-war Austin Seven. The Sprite was designed by the Donald Healey Motor Company, which received a royalty payment from the manufacturers BMC. It first went on sale at a price of £669, using a mildly tuned version of the Austin A-Series engine and as many other components from existing cars as possible to keep costs down.
The Sprite was made at the MG sports car factory at Abingdon and it was inevitable that the success of the design would spawn an MG version known as the Midget, reviving a popular pre-war model name. Enthusiasts often now refer to Sprites and MG Midgets collectively as “Spridgets”.
Frogeye/Bugeye Austin Healey Sprite Frogeye 1960
Engine 948 cc (0.9 L) A-Series I4 43HP3
Wheelbase 2,032 mm (80.0 in)4
Length 3,480 mm (137.0 in)4
Width 1,346 mm (53.0 in)4
Height 47.25 in (1,200 mm) (with hood up) 5
Designer Donald Healey
The little Sprite quickly became affectionately known as the “Frogeye” in the UK and the “Bugeye” in the US, because its headlights were prominently mounted on top of the bonnet, inboard of the front wings. The car’s designers had intended that the headlights could be retracted, with the lenses facing skyward when not in use; a similar arrangement was used many years later on the Porsche 928. But cost-cutting by BMC led to the flip-up mechanism being deleted, therefore the headlights were simply fixed in a permanently upright position, giving the car its most distinctive feature.
More from Wiki Austin Healey
Nikon D60 18mm
A big hug and thank you to the person who bought this as a card!