Marina

THE CRAYFORD MARINA CONVERTIBLE

In 1973, west country Leyland distributors and dealers Mumford of Plymouth commissioned Crayford to develop a Marina convertible. They paid all the development costs in exchange for manufacturing rights and the sole franchise to market the car.

Based on the two door hardtop coupe, Crayford found the Marina was a poor candidate to be redesigned as a convertible, they cut up Motor Magazine pictures of the new Marina coupe in an attempt to get the shape but it did not look right. It was normal practice for vehicle manufacturers to have longer doors on a two door model but Leyland could not afford to tool up for this, hardly noticed by the public or the press, Layland got away with using the short front doors from the four door saloon. Unfortunately for Crayford this made the convertible structurally weak, and odd looking in profile, the back end appeared too long when the roof was off.

Crayford got round both problems by introducing a unique and very clever double rollover bar with a glass inlay between the two bars, this drew the top side profile visibly back. It was shown for the first time on Crayford’s stand at the Motor Show in London in October 1973. Production was at Mumford’s Plymouth plant and each car carried a Mumford boot badges.

It was available as a 1.3 or 1.8 car, and also as a desirable 1.8 TC. With the twin cam MGB engine it was a fast, value for money convertible, until you showed it a corner.

The conversion sold at a £550 premium making a convertible £1.822, this went up to £2,156 for a 1.8 TC in 1975.

Mumford was slowly brought down and into receivership when its caravan and camper conversion business collapsed.

Today, 17 cars exist on the clubs Marina register.

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