Roman Wolseley
 

Hi from Rome.

 

Personally I think that most of the current BMC Farina’s owners and enthusiasts are in some way linked with these cars for sentimental reasons. Thus, I completely agree with the results of the survey on this website concerning the age of people owning Farina’s, probably most of us are sons of people who owned these cars in the 60’s as a family car.

I was born in England and my father purchased in 1966, few months before my birth, a brand new two tone sandy beige / rose taupe 16/60. This was our family car and the car of my childhood up to 1978 when my father decided to bring the car off road due to lack of spares here in Italy (the car left England in 1976). I remember it very well, although off the road until the mid ‘80, when it was scrapped.

 

I also remember some family friends who owned Farina’s when we were in England; mainly two brothers, one with a brown MG Magnette, the other with a two tone Riley 4/72. Another old man with an immaculate black A60 A family friend with a two tone A55 or a Morris Oxford V (I remember well the tail lights style so the difference with the others but I can’t remember any more) which was a box of rot… and wow! a family friend with a Vanden Plas Princess!

I’m sure now you can guess why I own a Farina here in Italy where they are extremely rare (I’m quite sure they are no more than 10) and, according to the Italian car magazines of the ‘60’s, they were on the pricelist but if some have been sold here, they didn’t leave any trace.   

 

In 2004, aged 38, I purchased my Wolseley 6/99 after two years of searching without success for a 16/60 in show condition. My father sadly passed away in 2006 at the age of 72 but you can’t imagine his joy seeing and sitting in a big Farina Wolseley that he always mentioned me as his dream car of the 60’s (although the 16/60 had been his most beloved car)

 

My 6/99 has already featured on the Rosette Recorder No: 109 and in some Wolseley World journals of the Wolseley Register. She is un-restored, in concourse condition having won in 2001 the Wolseley Register overall concourse trophy. I am the third owner, the car has been on the road from May 1960 up to 1973-4 clocking only 23000 miles when was stored by the first owner of Coventry and bought and re-commissioned by the second owner of Rugby in 1999.He owned the car up to my purchase in 2004 and clocking other 6000 miles. So I purchased the car with 28000 miles. I drove the car from Rugby back to Rome without any fault and the year later from Rome to Birmingham and back.

At present the car is registered in Italy, she has 34000 miles and is maintained to the highest standards. I’ve spent the first year in finding, on e-bay and elsewhere, some original spares to stock and replace some non original details of the car (very few really..) such as the radiator cap, the dizzy cap, spark plugs Champion N9YC with Champion N5 as original. At present the car seems to have all components (including the oil filter) as she left the factory! I kept, for safety reasons, radial (185 -14) against cross ply 7.00 14 tyres that were fitted as original equipment.

 

Please note this is a very rare Wolseley 6/99 NOT a most common 6/110.

Like I said, the car is totally original: bodywork, paint, interior, carpets, with original tool bag (tools have never been used and the jack is still in his wrapping paper), Smiths instruments labels (cigarette lighter and the heater one) in the glove box, a RAC guide of 1960 and a first aid kit.

The car got a good service history (it seems that the first owner have always serviced the car in the same BMC garage who sold the car). I have the original handbook and workshop manual, the original colour brochure, original warranty certificate; original service book used only in part, most of the MOT certificates and some more documentation.

I’ve completed the documentation of the car with an original BMC Mechanical Service Part List and a Body Service Part List one together with some confidential BMC bulletins of the age.

 

Please don't ask me to sell the car: the answer will obviously be NEVER.

Maybe one day I will swap my car for a totally original and immaculate sandy beige / rose taupe manual and pre 1968 Wolseley 16/60, but chances in finding such a car and an owner that wants to do that are scarce.

 

 

 

For the reasons already explained I love every single BMC Farina  on the road, I spend most of my “Internet time” in finding information on these cars and following every car that is sold via e-bay or in any other way I can reach. I’ll probably re-join the COOC this year, as I missed two years of subscription and the fabulous Rosette Recorder.

 

Take care of Your cars, although they are not MG B’s or Austin Healey’s they are simply a piece of British Motoring that MUST be saved whatever they’re worth; remember that the values of goods is the weight we give.

 

PS

My everyday car is a Rover 75 Connoisseur Tourer. Although she is beautiful I purchased the car mainly because I thought that this was the last chance to own a modern car linked in some way with the BMC / BL saloon cars produced in Longbridge and Cowley.

Gone was the BMC in the sixties and the BLMC in the seventies but sadly gone is what remained of it in the Internet and space era.

 

Happy motoring to all.

Canio Gigante [canio_gigante AT hotmail.com]

Rome, Italy