Truck Rewind: Mini Trucks, Where Art Thou? 1953-1973 Morris Quarter Ton Van and Pickup

Morris Minor 1000 pickup: the perfect truck for Keebler Elves

While the 1953-1973 Morris Quarter Ton Van and Pickup were based on the snappy little Morris Minor that was designed by Sir Alexander Arnold Constantine Issigonis – the man responsible for the Mini. The Morris was significantly beefed up for the small truck and van duty. Unlike the unibody, or monocoque Morris Minor car, the 1953-1973 Morris Quarter Ton Van and Pickup had a separate chassis, beefed up suspension and a low-ratio differential.

Also known as the Austin 6-CWT or 8-CWT Van & Pick up, the 1953-1973 Morris Quarter Ton Van and Pickup 803, 948 and 1,098 cc flathead four-cylinder engines. Rear-drive and a four-speed manual transmission finished off this simple package. Power ranged from a poky 34 horsepower to a beefy 48 horsepower and up to 60 lb-ft of torque. While these paltry numbers are no match for modern small/mid-sized pickup trucks, the 1953-1973 Morris Quarter Ton Van and Pickup weighed under a ton (somewhere around 2,000 lbs).

The reason we’re featuring this tiny truck came from a question sent to me years back. The question was simple, “Looking for a unique, cheap hobby pickup truck that’s easy to work on. Something that has easy to find parts.” While I did end up suggesting a Datsun 620 pickup truck, I added the Morris as a possible alternative.

There are some nifty Morris design motifs out there, including various woodies, panel-wagons and even postal versions that had rubber fenders (it helped in the tight confines of small towns and villages). It is quintessentially British.

Over a million Morris vehicles (cars and trucks) were built and parts are fairly easy to find. There were more than a few left-hand drive 1953-1973 Morris Quarter Ton Van and Pickup trucks to land in the United States. Prices for Morris Minor cars and trucks range from about $4,000 for rough runners to abouty $25,000 for top-notch restored examples. Extremely inexpensive considering what some Volkswagen collectables are going for today.

I have bugged the boss-men at TFL to get one as a project, but my idea was scoffed at. Bummer, I’ll have to do it another way. I think they have gobs of personality. Plus, it’s kind of cool to be an anglophile from time-to-time.

Would you restore one? Let us know in the comments below.

Speaking of old trucks…

Easily amused by anything with four wheels, Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. Wrecking yards, dealer lots, garages, racetracks, professional automotive testing and automotive journalism - Nathan has experienced a wide range of the automotive spectrum. Brought up in the California car culture and educated in theater, childhood education, film, journalism and history, Nathan now lives with his family in Denver, CO. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed worldwide.