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50 Years In A Barn: 1952 Austin A40 Pickup

“Were you born in a barn?” Having been in a barn for 50 years this 1952 Austin A40 pickup was almost born in a barn – well, give or take a decade and a half. This super cool truck can be found on craigslist, or here on the CL archive, in Granby, Massachusetts. The seller is asking $5,000 for this project pickup. Thanks to B. Walters for sending in this cool find!

This truck sure must have gotten a thorough workout in the 15 or so years that it was in use either before or after being put in a barn for five decades. It looks like quite a project. I would have expected that a vehicle that has been stored for 50 of its 66 years would be in nicer condition, at least if it had been stored indoors. But, they are rare and it goes without saying that they’re way off the charts on the cool-scale. Show up to a gas station in a 2018 pickup.. zzzzzzz.. but show up in this 1952 Austin A40 pickup and watch out!

Of course, even I can’t seriously compare a new pickup to one like this tiny A40. They’re barely even on the same planet as far as pickups go, other than they can both haul things in the rear bed. Jamie is our resident British vehicle expert but I don’t know if he’s even owned an A40 pickup? They were made between 1948 and 1957.

This example needs a full restoration as you can see, but at 13′-4″ long it’ll fit in your one-car garage during the 18 months that you’ll have parts scattered everywhere with no end in sight. Finally, it will come together and you’ll take it to your first car show where it will draw more people than a $100,000 Hemi Cuda. Some parts are still available from sources such as Austin Works.

A40 = A for Austin and 40 for 40 hp. This 1.2L inline-four “motor is all apart but all there” so like everything else it’ll need a full restoration. The seller does have the title, or rather the registration, so hopefully once it’s restored it’ll be licensed and used. Maybe not used like a 2018 pickup is but at least used. I would love to have one of these someday, have any of you owned an A40 pickup?


  1. Beatnik Bedouin

    Can you say “Gasser”..? Sure, I knew you could…

    It could be a fun restoration for a British vehicle enthusiast, as well, as long as the owner doesn’t mind seeing the world at 45 mph.

    There used to be quite a few of these A40 ‘utilities’ (utes) around NZ, but they’re pretty rare on the ground, these days.

    Like 6
  2. lawrence

    Rare….please keep it that way…….

    Like 12
  3. Hot Rod baby

    Can you say Hemi!

    Narrowed rear end!

    Tubbed with slicks !

    I can see ladder bars and it standing tall again with tires smoking hot!

    “Give me fuel .. give me fire 🔥!
    Give me what that I desires ..,,,..

    A lil variation of lyrics but cool rod in making

    If one wants it original then pony up er pony down on horses and buy 😂

    Like 1
  4. geomechs geomechs Member

    This one is different. I’ve never seen the pickup version of this; only the car. It would be a lot of fun putting around it this. You would stand out in a crowd for sure. And I thought that it was interesting to see a Ford Pilot pickup….

    Like 4
  5. Coventrycat

    Love those A40’s.

    Like 2
  6. Al

    I wonder what size of camper it could haul?

    Like 2
  7. Solosolo UK ken TILLY Member

    I have never owned an A 40 pickup but it was the first car that I ever drove, if only in the company car park. That was back in 1955 and using the company vehicle, that’s where I also learned how to change gears with 4 on the column. To select reverse I had to pull out the toggle on the end before it would move into the reverse position. The first car that I ever drove on the road was a 1948 Ford V8 Pilot sedan. Both wonderful experiences but on very different levels.

    Like 4
  8. Lawyer George

    This is a $500.00 car. You’d be in it $25K minimum if you restored it.

    Like 0
  9. Rube Goldberg Member

    Again, same old thing, most of us would love to see it restored, maybe with a little more oomph, but someone’s eyes just lit up, their long search for a gasser project is over. Gassers are my favorite dragsters, the ones we could afford, anyways. Austins have long been the vehicle of choice, and this will no doubt see the same fate. Cool find, and even cooler bouncing the front end down the track.

    Like 1
  10. FordGuy1972 Fordguy1972 Member

    I worked after school in a petrol station in Ireland, late ’60s to early ’70s and I don’t believe I ever saw one. To be honest, I don’t recall seeing any type of pickup there. Cool little truck that I would like to see restored to original; that would be a treat. Perhaps the buyer could up the power somehow without changing the original look.

    Like 2
  11. Daryl Conley

    As rare as these are, especially in the US, and as complete as it looks, this would be a good candidate to restore. Don’t chop it up into “just another Gasser.” Believe it or not, there are parts readily available, albeit mostly from overseas, from companies such as Earlpart, Austin Counties, Worldwide Auto. There are also collector clubs. I am restoring an A40 Dorset (two-door) and have found ll these sources invaluable

    Like 4
  12. canadainmarkseh

    I’d resto mod it leaving it looking stock on the outside. I’d put some thing like a 70’s or 80’s Toyota Corolla engine / trans ( sr5 ) in it. Probably the rear axle too. Some would say that’s a terrible thing to do to this truck, I say Toyota reliability and the ability to go faster than 55mph.

    Like 2
    • Thomas Cotrel

      Go with Datsun/Nissan power trains. IIRC Datsun based their old Bluebird (210, 310, 410) engines on Austin designs.

      Like 2
  13. ROBERT

    i’m clearing out a huge pile of austin counties club mags
    for the cost of media mail post.

    also original brochure on this pickup and others
    please austin lovers speak forth!

    mortieboy california

    Like 0
  14. Nevis Beeman

    There is a great club in Britiain that would happily assist any budding restorer….called “the Austin Counties Car club” which covers those Austins
    Manufactured at Longbridge between 1939 & 1957, including this and other commercial derivatives. The presidents email is ;>christallents@hotmail.commikegreasby@gmail.com<

    (This imfo from their magazine 'County Counsel') I hope she is saved !

    Like 0
  15. Bob C.

    Those little 1.2 four bangers are what powered the Nash Metropolitan.

    Like 0
    • Rube Goldberg Member

      ‘Nuff said there!!

      Like 0
  16. Martin Horrocks

    This is a very rare car, also very complete and not expensive to restore. Parts supply easy and cheap, shell looks very solid. Once done it would be a $12-15000 vehicle, so there´s margin. Great promo vehicle.

    That 1200 cc motor is the first use of the B series engine, so100 bhp plus with an MGB engine/box will be easy. Upgrade the brakes if that´s your plan.

    Like 1
  17. Tort Member

    Came so close to buying an former Anglia gasser years ago to put on the street and ever since I wanted something like this.

    Like 1
  18. RicK


    Like 1
  19. Chris In Canada ( for the moment)

    Saw one in RHD, with a tray back only 3 days ago. In Victoria, BC of all places.

    Like 0
    • George

      That was my A40 Ute that came. From NZ

      Like 0
  20. John

    No gasser- save it.

    Like 2
  21. lowbusman

    I don’t know if they all had this , but mine had an all aluminum box and tailgate! Light and No rust

    Like 0
  22. Solosolo UK ken TILLY Member

    @lowbusman. Never heard of one having any aluminium anywhere.

    Like 0
  23. Daryl Conley

    Robert mortieboy in California – not sure if you got my message, but I would be interested in the Austin literature you said you have. You can email me at itsdiz@yahoo.com for payment arrangements.


    Like 0
  24. Steve A

    That is one BUTT UGLY truck! LOL

    Like 0
  25. Marleen Brown

    They great when restored by the right person, this is my dads.

    Like 0

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