Austin Healey 3000 MK II
Austin-Healey was a brand of sports car.
The marque was established through a joint venture arrangement set up in 1952 between Leonard Lord of the Austin division of the British Motor Corporation (BMC) and Donald Healey, a renowned automotive engineer and designer.
Austin-Healey produced cars until 1972 when the 20-year agreement between Healey and Austin came to an end. Donald Healey left the company in 1968 when British Motor Holdings (BMC had merged with Jaguar Cars in 1966 to form BMH) was merged into British Leyland.
Incidentally, the name Austin is now owned by Nanjing who bought the assets of MG Rover Group (British Leyland's successor company) out of bankruptcy in 2005. After Donald Healey sold his original business, Donald Healey Motor Company, the Healey brand was registered to a new firm, Healey Automobile Consultants, which the Healey family sold to HFI Automotive in 2005.
In June 2007, Nanjing and Healey Automobile Consultants / HFI Automotive signed a collaborative agreement that aims to recreate the Austin-Healey and Healey marques alongside NAC's MG. No timeline has been given as to when the Healey and Austin-Healey brands will return, although MG will be back on the market in China and the UK by the year's end.
The Austin-Healey 3000 was a sports car built from 1959 to 1967, by the Austin-Healey marque, and is the best known of the 'big' Healey models. The 3000 was a successful car which won its class in many European rallies in its heyday - and is still used in competition by enthusiasts today. The car was originally to be called the "Mille Miglia" after the famous sports car race, but the displacement-based "3000" name stuck instead. Both the 3000 and the 100 before it were known simply as "the Austin-Healey" in the 1950s, since the company was essentially a single-vehicle marque.
The original Austin Healey 3000 was 2912 cc (nearly 3 litres), with twin SU carburetors and front disc brakes. It was only called the Mark I after the Mark II was released. The original 3000 was built from 1959 - 1961 and has model designation BT7 (4 seat version) and BN7 (2 seater).
The 3000 Mk II came with triple SU Carburetors was built 1961 - 1963 and had model variants BT7 (4 seater version), BN7 (2 seat roadster) and BJ7 (wind up windows rather than side curtains).
The 3000 Mk III was launched in 1963, and remained in production until 1967.
The Series BJ8 was the most powerful and luxurious of the big Healeys - with a Walnut veneer dash, wind up windows, and 150 hp (112 kW).
Austin Healey 3000's have a long competition history - having raced at most major racing circuits around the world, including Sebring (USA), Le Mans (France), and Mount Panorama Circuit, Bathurst (Australia).