initially as the "Empire Oxford" or "15.9 Morris-Oxford",
then the "Oxford 16/40", the car did not have the success
that the motoring press had predicted when reporting the unexpected
appearance of the new Morris in chassis form at the Motor
Show, Olympia, 1926.
Although carrying the name Morris, it was in fact a Morris
Commercial design, making use of a new 4-cylinder 15.9 hp
Side-valve engine developed for the 'Z' type truck.
at overseas markets, the Empire Oxford was built on rugged
lines (thanks to the overhead worm back axle) suitable for
the unmade roads to be found abroad. Despite these features
and a 9 ft. 6 in. wheelbase and 4 ft. 8 in. track, some early
models are said to have been shipped out to Australia only
to be returned later as unsaleable.
15.9 hp Oxford differed from other Morris cars of the period,
being initially fitted with a single dry-plate clutch. This
was changed within a short time to a cork insert clutch running
in oil. On the Saloon model the initial design of the full
width front seat was adjustable by means of straps changing
to a sliding arrangement on the 1928/29 models. Open models
had individual front seats.
the 1929 season the model was known as the "16/40", the tourer
cars now listed as a "four -seater" instead of "five-seater",
and all models, including a short availability period for
a fabric bodied saloon version, had twin blade bumpers front
and rear. Throughout the production run, the 15.9 Oxford was
fitted with the Barker system of dipping and a right-hand
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