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Travelers road to decision affluent ins

His name will always be associated with the Morris Minor and the Mini, but he was a complex man with a complex background, family, story and career. His fingerprints are all over other cars, too, the Austin Land Crab and the Austin Maxi for example, but not always as successfully, as we shall see.

He was a complex man, with a complex background, family story and career. Young Alec grew up in a very affluent environment, with influences from Germany and Greece he grew up speaking German and Greekrather than Turkey and Britain.

Issigonis showed little interest in things mechanical until he was well into his teens, not riding in a car until he was 14 years old, and was seemingly more interested in art, under the strong influence of his mother. Tragically, Constantine Issigonis contracted a serious illness, and died in Malta in June Prior to his death, Alec and his mother travelled overland to London.

Hulda Issigonis then returned to Malta, leaving sixteen year old Alec alone in London, returning only after Constantine had died.

Alec completed his education at an English boarding school, and intook a two month tour, by car, of Europe with his mother before returning to take a place at Battersea Polytechnic in south London, to study mechanical engineering. He failed his degree course but gained a diploma in Mechanical Engineering, at the third attempt, in Given his disrupted education, unusual background and the tough economic times that were the late s, finding a job was not easy, but inand by now a British citizen in his own right, Issigonis took his first job in the motor industry, for Edward Gillett in London, through a networking contact he had made at Battersea.

Gillett was developing a freewheel device for use on cars, partly as a refinement and fuel economy device, and partly to reduce the need for double declutching gearchanges in the pre-synchromesh era. Issigonis worked as a draughtsman and design engineer, and also in a sales and project engineer role, succeeding in securing Rover as a customer use the freewheel device on the new for Rover Ten P1 series, above.

Rover used the freewheel extensively, on cars and Land Rovers, into the s. Chrysler also took a licence to manufacture the device, which was an integral part of t heir pioneering overdrive in Humber were more interested in the sales engineer than his product, and Issigonis moved to Humber in Humber was the upscale brand of the Rootes Groupbut also the name of the main car building company in the Group.

Later, he was working on an independent suspension for the larger Humber Hawk, with another rising star in the industry, Bill Heynes. Heynes later became Technical Director at Jaguar and was a personal friend of Issigonis for many years.

Travelers road to decision affluent ins

At this time, he was working for Maurice Olley. Issigonis had some success at club racing level and in travelled with his lifelong friend George Dowson to the German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring. Issigonis and Dowson then travelled into Austria to the mountain climb competition at the then new Grossglockner Hochalpen Pass.

Issigonis standing with the special at Shelsey Walsh hillclimb ByIssigonis had replaced his modified Austin Seven with a more radical car of his own design, constructed of plywood laminated in aluminium sheeting, in what we would now call a composite construction.

The suspension was trailing arms at the front, attached to a steel cross-member, and a swing axle rear, all with rubber springs made of catapult elastic. This car was remarkably light, weighing less than lb. By the time the chassis had been completed, Issigonis had somehow got hold of an Austin supplied works specification supercharged side-valve engine as well.

Most events he entered were sprints and hillclimbs, but he also competed in some circuit races. Meanwhile, back at the office, Issigonis had devised an independent coil spring system for the first unitary construction Morris, the Tenbut which did not go into production as Morris, conservative as ever, chose a more conventional and cheaper beam axle solution.

It was, though, used on the postwar MG Y Type saloons. ByIssigonis was lead engineer for steering and suspension for all the Morris car range.

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Oak placed another engineer, Jack Daniels, alongside him to keep his feet on the ground. The relationship got to the point where Issigonis had the ideas, did the sketches and Daniels did the formal drawings.

During the war, Morris Motors undertook military work, notably the development of the Morris lightweight reconnaissance vehicle for the War Department. Issigonis was excused service in the armed forces and remained at Cowley working on military vehicles of various types, including a very basic compact load carrier often described as a motorised wheelbarrow intended for use in jungle conditions together with an amphibious version designed for use by the Royal Navy.

ByIssigonis had started work on an advanced post war car, then codenamed Mosquito, which became the Morris Minor.Latest breaking news, including politics, crime and celebrity. Find stories, updates and expert opinion.

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Travelers road to decision affluent ins

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