Fun Ho! #32 Austin 1100

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This model is of the Fun Ho! #32 Austin 1100 in green. This model appears to be based on the Austin 1100 Mk 1 released between 1962 and 1967.

There are no opening parts on this model. All features are cast into the metal of the model. The model appears to be based on an Austin 1100 (1963 to 1967) like the one photographed at right. Austin 1100s were built in New Zealand between 1963 and 1967.

At the front of the Fun Ho! Austin there is a cast representation of the headlights and grille. The only way to tell the difference between the Fun Ho! Morris 1100 and its counterpart, the Fun Ho! Austin 1100, is by the grille - the Morris has a horizontally striped grille without badge, and the Austin has a hatched grille with badge (both reflecting the correct grille as seen on the real vehicle). Both sides carry cast body lines and representations of the front and rear doors. The rear is cast to show the rear lights, number plate, and the boot lid. Both front and rear bumpers are part of the lightly plated base casting.

There is no interior or glazing.

All wheels appear to be one piece, black plastic, typical of the Fun Ho! miniatures of the time, mounted on steel domed axles.

The base plate appears to be lightly plated. It is held in place by two machined rivets, one to the left middle and one to the right middle. The base is marked "Fun Ho!, N.Z." on a single line to the middle centre top, "1100" to the middle centre bottom, and has a representation of the lower engine and exhaust system.

Austin 1100 MkI registered 1964 1098cc photographed at Knebworth 2012
Charles01 [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

This is likely to have been a later issue, issued after 1966, when plating ceased. During its original lifetime (1966-72), 53,100 models were manufactured. This model comes complete with its original Fun Ho! Mobil Midgets packaging (printed to represent a Mobil petrol pump) as part of a promotion with the Mobil Oil Company. The Fun Ho! leaflet/catalogue is included in the packaging — these were introduced as a simple way to reduce rubbing on the painted casting during transit, and were wrapped around the model before it was placed inside its card box.

The scale is unknown but thought to be around 1:85. My reasoning is that the normal length for the Austin 1100 was 146.65 inches (3.725 metres) and the model has a length of almost 1.75 inches (44mm) (3725/44 = 1:84.66).

Left Photo: Comparison of the grilles on the Fun Ho! #13 Morris 1100 (left) and #32 Austin 1100 (right).
Right Photo: enlargement of the #32 Austin 1100 grille.

Item: 4001