Car Smart: 1954 Wolseley 4/44

IN the era that introduced the world to the likes of Elvis Presley and James Dean, the iconic Wolseley 4/44 first set its wheels on the road.

Manufactured by the British Motor Corporation, a brand new 4/44 would set you back around $1,200 when it was first revealed in 1953.

South East resident Ivan Mahoney took the time to restore his 1954 4/44 which has great sentimental value to his family.

“My great aunt first purchased the vehicle from Hopgood Motors in Mount Gambier,” Mr Mahoney said.

“John Hopgood is a member of the Mount Gambier Veteran and Vintage Car Club with me and he recalls the day my great aunt came to pick it up.”

Mr Mahoney’s aunt eventually inherited the car and over time he decided to purchase it from her.

“I have such great memories of the car from when I was younger,” Mr Mahoney said.

“So when I had the opportunity to buy the car myself I knew I had to take the time to restore it to its former glory.”

Before Mr Mahoney came to be in possession of the vehicle, it was in storage for over 18 years.

He then waited eight years until he retired before beginning restoration which took him around six months of hard work.

Mr Mahoney was able to complete much of the work himself, but enlisted the help of a local mechanic and spray painter to make sure the car was perfect.

Mr Mahoney’s 4/44 still has some original features like a leather interior and a wood grain dash in addition to authentic headlights and chrome grill.

The 4/44 has a 1,250cc (76 cu in) XPAW engine with four speed manual transmission and a top speed of 73mph (117kph).

Mr Mahoney said he was pleased with the outcome of his restoration and plans to continue driving his Wolseley as part of the Mount Gambier Veteran and Vintage Car Club.

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