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HillMan Motor Cars
The Poor Man's Porsche 911
Rootes' little car. Sprightly with its Coventry-Climax derived
engine. Really fun to drive. Remarkable gear shift. Great
road-holding ! The rearmounted engine is all aluminium alloy,
with an overhead camshaft. It has all-independent suspension.
It weighs 1560 lbs (708 kg). The engine in 875cc Hillman-Imp-form
weighs 170 lbs (77 kg). Output was 39bhp at 5000rpm, giving the
Imp a top speed of around 80mph (126 km/h) and 45mpg. Output was
increased to 51bhp in the Sunbeam Sport and Stiletto versions and
top speed was almost 90mph. The Rally Imp had a 998cc unit which
boosted bhp to 65 and top speed well over 90mph.
Imps were built in a specially designed plant in Linwood,
Scotland from 1963 until 1976. They had many innovative features
for 1963 and they're not old-fashioned now. A production
total of 440,032 was made, less than 20,000 are left.