Princess

THE CRAYFORD PRINCESS

 

 

They say everyone deserves a second chance, after all their woes with B.M.C it must have been a surprise at the October 1975 Motor Show to see Crayford launch an estate version of the all new 18/22 Leyland Princess, or "the wedge" as it became known. Like the 1800/2200 Landcrab it replaced, the princess had poor boot access and cried out for a proper tailgate.

Crayford had done well with their 1800 hatchback conversions and now repeated the trick on the Princess range. It sold well and prices ranged from £2,799 for the 1800 to £3,682 for the 2200 HLS. Leyland had the chance to put all this right with the Princes Mk.ll in 1978 but said a tailgate was too downmarket for the car. Crayford said "thanks a lot" and carried on plugging the gap as their 5 door sold well. Only when Leyland relaunched the 18/22, new Princess once again, as the "Ambassador", in 1982 with a factory tailgate was this gross error corrected. Leyland produced 221,000 18/22 & Princess models, providing Crayford with lots of work, only 43,500 proper 5-door Ambassadors were produced in the last two years of the model. What poor product planning.

No Crayford 18/22 Estate is known to survive to date.

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