Classic Car Catalogue

Hillman 1953

Minx Phase V - discontinued
Minx Phase VI - new model - this year only
Minx Phase VII - new model

Great Britain

W nowym modelu Phase VI zmieniono wlot powietrza. Oprócz trzech tradycyjnych wersji nadwozia, wprowadzono czwartą: hardtop Coupé nazwane Californian. Bocznozaworowy silnik ma zmieniony kształt komór spalania i nowy gaźnik. Nowy Minx będzie produkowany także w Japonii jako Isuzu.

Hillman Minx Mark VI Convertible Coupé and Saloon are the Minx's 21st anniversary models, featuring new frontal treatment (higher, oval, curved radiator grille), round rear lamps that faired into the wings and a redesigned fascia with a chromium surround. An Estate Car version is also available. Minx Californian Hardtop is a new model, similar to the Convertible Coupé but fitted with a fixed metal roof and a large wrap-round three-piece rear window. The side windows wound down into the body panels, with no centre body pillar. It follow a style that had been popularized in the USA. Phase VI gets also redesigned cylinder head, carb hot spot, two spoke steering wheel.
Phase VII from late 1953 gets bigger back window, longer rear wings and boot, and new tail lights.

Phase V production since 1951 - 59.777.
Phase VI production: 1953 - 44.643.


Minx Phase V

Phase Vb (1265 cc, 38 bhp)
 Saloon, 4dr, 4miejsc
 Convertible, 2dr, 4miejsc
 Estate, 4dr, 4 miejsc


Minx Phase VI

Phase VI (1265 cc, 38 bhp)
 Saloon 4dr, 4 miejsc
 Convertible 2dr, 4 miejsc
 Coupé 2dr, 4 miejsc
 Estate 4dr, 4 miejsc

The new Minx Californian


Minx Phase VII

Phase VII (1265 cc, 38 bhp)
 Saloon, 4dr, 4 miejsc
 Convertible, 2dr, 4 miejsc
 Coupé, 2dr, 4 miejsc
 Estate, 4dr, 4 miejsc

October advert


A number of makers let a year pass without introducing any new model; few produce two versions of the same car within a twelve-month span. This, however, has been witnessed in the case of the Hillman Minx, for the Mark VI model introduced in February was replaced by the Mark VII in October. It should, however, be made clear that although there are considerable differences between the Mark VI and preceding Mark V, the changes effected on the Mark VII are of a relatively minor nature. In order to keep the picture chronologically clear we shall therefore describe the Mark VI in full and thereafter make a note of the changes effected on the Mark VII. Externally, both types are to be distinguished by an entirely new elliptical air intake and by a choice of body styles in which the fixed head four-door saloon and drophead two-door convertible have been supplemented by what is known as the Californian hard-top Coupé.
This follows the general lines of the drophead convertible, but has a panelled head and an exceptionally large wrap-round rear window giving a particularly light and airy interior. The finish of the head, incidentally, is the same as that of the normal body panelling, an imitation leather effect not being employed, as in some bodies of this type. Interior accommodation is on similar lines to the drophead model, but, owing to there being no need to provide for the folding of the head, a much larger luggage boot (of 11 cu. ft. capacity) is made possible.
Both this model and the Mark VI edition of the convertible have a bench-type front seat cushion with a split squab, each half of which is arranged to tip forward and at the same time swing at a slight angle to provide particularly easy access to the rear seats.
On all models the engine remains unaltered in general layout and size, but both the cylinder head and the manifolding are of new design.
The combustion chambers, viewed in plan, have been extended to synchronize with the bores and have simultaneously been made shallower at these points. The result is to reduce turbulence slightly and, at the same time, to increase the surface area of metal in contact with the final portion of mixture to be burned, thus giving a slight quenching effect which reduces the risk of end detonation; in consequence, a considerable improvement in smooth running is claimed.
The new manifolding provides a thermostatically-controlled hot-spot to ensure more rapid warming-up after a cold start. The general layout of both the inlet and exhaust manifolds is much as before, but the design now incorporates a jacket into which the exhaust gases are deflected by a valve when the engine is cold, the gases then circulating round the central portion of the inlet manifold before passing out to the exhaust pipe. So soon as a predetermined temperature is reached, the thermostat causes the valve to swing over and allows the exhaust gases to pass out direct.
A new type of Solex downdraught carburettor with an improved starting device is fitted. Known as FAI 0/2 this not only offers two positions of the choke control (very rich for a first start from dead cold, and moderately rich for initial warming up), but is also arranged so that the control can be moved progressively from the intermediate to the out-of-action positions, the effect over this range being to provide an adjustable fast idling speed with a steadily-vanishing degree of richness.
Two other minor mechanical improvements are to be found on the Mark VI Minx, and both concern the suspension. Improved rubber seals have been adopted for the upper and lower fulcrum-pin attachments of the i.f.s., the result of which is to extend the recommended lubrication period for these points from 1,000 to 2,000 miles.
The other change concerns the dampers, which are now of the latest Armstrong "R" type. Of the double-acting piston variety, as before, they include a compression rubber ring on the rebound piston to provide an improved seal, whilst the walls of the body have been thickened up and the drillings employed for the valves simplified. Advantage has been taken of these improvements to use revised settings which give better all-round performance.
The general contours of the body remain as before, but several distinguishing detail features are to be noted at the rear. A greater wrap-round for the bumpers is provided, the stop-and-tail lights are of the latest Lucas circular type mounted in small fairings attached to the wings and a new type of plastic number-plate lamp has been adopted; this is surmounted by a chromium-plated cowl extending the full width of the number plate and incorporating the word "Hillman" stencil fashion, with the lettering arranged to show in red at night.
A notable addition to the instruments is a water-temperature thermometer, and a new type of speedometer dial-deeply recessed to cut out reflections and marked in k.p.h. as well as m.p.h.-is now fitted. There has also been some rearrangement of minor switches (all of which are neatly identified) and a diagram of the gear positions and a trade mark are now incorporated between the fuel gauge and the thermometer. Toning in with this more modern facia panel treatment is a new two-spoke steering wheel. The ventilation and heating arrangements are completely new, the former scuttle ventilator giving place to a large duct which admits fresh air from a point behind the front grill to the body side of the scuttle, with control-valves conveniently placed below the parcel shelf.
In temperate climates, this arrangement is considered adequate without the use of a fan, motion of the car being relied upon to provide the necessary current of fresh air. For cold countries, on the other hand, a blower unit, which is located behind the front grille in the interests of silence, can be provided. Equally, for hot countries, an additional cool-air duct to the opposite side of the body is obtainable.
The Mark VII cars are distinguished by a new luggage boot extending 2 in. further backwards than previously, and with a re-shaped top lid which jointly increase the carrying capacity by 1½ cu. ft. Coupled with this are corresponding backward extensions of the rear wings which also carry the tail and stop lights. The width of the rear window has been increased from 31½ to 36½ in. and the front screen is supported by a chromium plated frame in place of the former rubber surround. On the Mark VII single valve springs have replaced the former double springs and the engine mounting has been modified. Other mechanical changes are increased braking effort on the front wheels and the use of moulded brake linings. The trackrods have a new design of balljoint to give better retention of lubricant, and the starter motor is on the Mark VII operated by a push-button and a remote solenoid control.