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Ministerial Wolseley’s


Last Wolseley


Harris Mann



The Wolseley Saloon was the top of the 18-22 range and as such, it was only available with the 2200 E-series six cylinder engine. There was only one trim level for this version, luxury! Full-length vinyl roof, chrome front and rear screen surrounds, tinted glass, rubber bumper extensions and those lovely plastic wheel covers with chrome wheel nuts and rim embellishers. About the only thing lacking in these cars was performance, with 60 coming up in a leisurely 14.2 seconds for the automatic, but the manual managed a more respectable 11.8 seconds, though the performance was about average for the class.













The interior of the Wolseley was suitably plush, velour seats with front centre armrests, wooden dashboard, push button MW/LW radio (note the large speaker in the centre console) rear courtesy lights, velour roof lining. Note also the larger ‘hockey stick’ door grabs. The Wolseley was a very nice package in its day; even the Government at the time ran a fleet of black ministerial Wolseleys.













This rear view shows the full width Wolseley badge bar. Previous Wolseley’s were given a designation such as 18/85 or Six, but this was simply a Wolseley.



The transition from Wolseley to Princess HLS was fairly straightforward – basically the bonnet, grille, wheel centres, boot badge and steering wheel pad are the only items that make it a Wolseley, so for the Princess Wolseley badges were replaced with Leyland logos.


Even so, the Wolseley versions are now regarded as the most desirable of all the wedge cars and, as with the other 18-22 series cars, the Wolseley is now very rare. Its rarity and the fact it was the last car to bear the Wolseley name means a pristine example of this fine car can now command in excess of £3000… If you can find one for sale!



Just over 3,000 Wolseley Wedges were built between March and September 1975. The 18-22 Series was renamed Leyland Princess in September 1975, and the Austin, Morris and Wolseley versions were discontinued.