On 26 March 1975 the Princess was launched by British Leyland as the 18–22 Series, "the car that has got it all together". It replaced the Austin / Morris / Wolseley ADO17. The numbers 18–22 referred to the available engine sizes, 1800 cc and 2200 cc. For the first six months of production three different versions were produced: Austin, Morris and Wolseley. The Austin model had the original design, featuring trapezoidal headlights and a simple horizontally grille. The Morris and Wolseley cars had a larger styled grille.
The car has a front-wheel drive / transverse engine configuration it gave the Princess a cabin space advantage when compared with similarly sized cars from competing manufacturers. Suspension used BL's Hydragas system. The ride was very soft and smooth almost as smooth as the Citroën CX.
|Wolseley Saloon (1975)|
|Predecessor: Austin 1800 (ADO17) (1965)|
|Leyland Princess range 1976|
|Leyland Princess HL 1978|
In September 1975 the range was renamed "Princess", a new marque created by British Leyland although it had previously been used as a model name on the Austin Princess limousine from 1947 to 1956. In July 1978, the Princess 2 was introduced. The main change was the replacement of the old 1800 cc B-Series engine with the new O-Series engine. The new engine was offered in two sizes: 1695 cc and 1993 cc.
|Leyland Princess 2 range 1978|
Production of the Princess ceased in November 1981. It was succeeded by the Austin Ambassador, which was produced from 1982 until 1984 and only ever sold in the UK. 224,942 Princess's and 43,427 Ambassador's were produced.
|Successor: Austin Ambassador|
Leyland 18-22 Series, Development Story
Leyland Princess, German Ad (1970s)
Leyland Princess, French Ad (1970s)
Brochure Wolseley Saloon (1975, English)
Brochure Leyland Princess (1975, German)
Brochure Leyland Princess 2 (1979, Dutch)