Wolseley 15/60 (1958 - 1961)
As already described in the Austin, Morris, MG and Riley sections, there were five saloon derivatives of the Farina-styled BMC B-Series saloons, all of which were carefully badge-engineered and had their equipment aligned to suit the dealer chains in question. Paradoxically, although the Wolseley version, called the 15/60, is the fifth to be described, it was the first to be launched, in December 1958.
Because the chassis details of the Wolseley were exactly like those of the other B-Series 'Farinas', in this case it is only necessary to list its distinctive mechanical and equipment features. The engine of this Wolseley was the same 52bhp single-SU carburettor version of the 1,489cc unit as used in the Austin and Morris models.
The body style incorporated the prominent tail-fins of the Austin and Morris (as opposed to the cut-back fins of the MG and Riley types), and there was a characteristic Wolseley front grille with the illuminated name badge. Two-tone paintwork was optional, but many cars had this feature, while front and rear bumper overriders were standard.
The individual feature of the interior was the facia style, which had a burr walnut face, in which the heater installation was standard and where the instruments were in a raised cowl ahead of the driver's eyes. There was a lockable glove box on the passenger's side. Front seats were arranged in the form of a divided bench, and the handbrake was tucked down at the outside of the driver's side.
The 15/60 was built at Cowley for three years, in and among the Magnettes, 4/68s and Morris Oxfords, and had the same rather stodgy character as all those cars. It was displaced by the 16/60 model in the autumn of 1961.
Wolseley 15/60 specification
Produced: Cowley, 1958-61. 24,579 cars built.
General layout: Unit-construction, pressed-steel body-chassis structure in 4-seater, 4-door saloon car style. Front-mounted engine driving rear wheels.
Engine and transmission: BMC B-Series engine, 4-cylinder, ohv, in-line. 1,489cc, 73.02 x 88.9mm, 52bhp at 4,350rpm; 82lb ft at 2,100rpm; 4-speed gearbox, no synchromesh on 1st gear; centre-floor gear-change; live (beam) rear axle with hypoid-bevel final drive.
Chassis: Independent front suspension, coil springs and wishbones. Cam-and-lever steering. Rear suspension by half-elliptic leaf springs. Front and rear drum brakes; 5.90-14in tyres.
Dimensions: Wheelbase 8ft 3.25in; front track 4ft 0.87in; rear track 4ft 1.87in; length 14ft 10in; width 5ft 3.5in; height 4ft 11in. Unladen weight (approx) 2,473lb.
Distinguishing features from previous model: Entirely different car compared with 15/50 model, bearing family resemblance to other related Farina-styled models.
Typical performance: Maximum speed 77mph; 0-60mph 24.3sec; standing 1/4-mile 22.6sec; overall fuel consumption 28mpg.
Launch Price: £991
Derivatives: The 16/60 of 1961 was a further developed version of the 15/50. All other B-Series 'Farinas' were closely related.
Fate: Discontinued in 1961 in favour of the updated 16/60 model.
Trivia fact: Wolseley 15/60: The first of the BMC farina models to be announced, in December 1958.
Source: "The Cars of BMC" - Graham Robson (Motor Racing Publications, 1987)