Riley Elf MKII 1966
Released in 1961 as the "luxurious" versions of the Mini, both the Wolseley Hornet and the Riley Elf were designed with longer slightly finned rear wings and longer boots. Inside, the Elf bore all of the trappings of luxury synonymous with British cars at that time. It's interior was lined with wood trim and leather upholstery while additional chrome brightened up the exterior.
The wheel base remained the same as the Mini but the overall length was slightly increased to 3.27m (10'8"). The rubber/hydrolastic suspension which worked well in the Minis was also incorporated into the Riley Elf and Wolseley Hornet.
Both the Elf and the Hornet have very distinctive Grille designs together with chrome bumpers, overriders and larger dimension chrome hub caps and wheel trims.
Inside the Elf was given a full width wood veneer dashboard which was the idea of Christopher Milner, the sales manager for Riley. The seats were fully encased in leather and more luxurious carpets were fitted.
The bodies were built at Fisher and Ludlow under the Fisholow brand name which can be evidenced by an identity plate fixed onto the right side fitch panel under the bonnet.
The engine was the 998cc version of the Cooper power unit incorporating a SU HS2 carburettor and generating 38bhp which gave the cars a top speed of 77mph and the significant increase in torque made them more fun to drive.
The MKII cars came with increased braking power in the form of front drum brakes with twin loading shoes to cope with the increase in power output.
Price – £11995
Manufacturer – Riley
Model – Elf MKII
Year – 1966
Engine Size – 998cc
Transmission – Manual
Fuel – Petrol
Our Particular Riley Elf MYL 318D affectionately nicknamed "Milly" is a 1966 MKII immaculately presented in Arianca beige and old English white (coffee and cream). This is a matching numbers car with just 50,320 miles showing on the milometer.
Andy and Brian collected this car from a private seller in Durham in April 2018 and were disappointed to be told that the vehicle history had been mislaid. However, the seller did confirm that the car details were correct and now having owned it for nearly 3 years we have to say that this is a very impressive little car.
We have replaced the steering wheel with a wooden one as the car came to us without a centre horn push. We do have the original steering wheel should this need to be swapped back.