CAR OF THE MONTH 121: February 2018
1953 Austin A125 Sheerline
In contrast to the A40 Dorset featured last month, the Austin A125 Sapphire (launched a few months before the Dorset, although this later example dates from 65 years ago, 1953) was aimed at a rather different Austin customer. Described in contemporary publicity as "a powerful and luxurious car" and "the finest car that Austin has yet produced", it boasted a six-cylinder 3993cc engine developing 125bhp and had a top speed of over 80mph. The interior was fitted out to a high standard for what was still post-War austerity Britain, with walnut facia, a cigar lighter, a built-in "Ekco" radio with two speakers (although stereo was a distant dream!) and a "powerful jacking" control. They certainly did not skimp on the size of the headlamps! However, the relatively high price (at launch equivalent to over £50,000 in today's values) and a fuel consumption of 14 mpg or worse meant that this model was never likely to be profitable: only 9000 were sold over the car's nine year lifespan.