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  • Writer's pictureFrank

Founding Rootes Automotive Parts | A Brief Story

Updated: May 7, 2020

25 years ago I restored my first Hillman Imp - Australian GT version.This was at a time when not much was happening on the internet and the parts were ordered via mail or telegram.

The parts for the Imp were only available from the UK and so I purchased several sets of rubber seals and mechanical parts from UK supplier. The cost was expensive at the time due to very low Australian dollar.

When the seals arrived I was very disappointed in the quality and the cost and after having them professionally fitted they split and went very hard in a short time. I decided to start making my own products after noticing a space in the market.

I am now the sole manufacturer of many Hillman Imp Saloon and Coupe parts.

In the early stage there was a lot of trial and error but now there is no comparison for the quality of seals I produce and source for my customers. In fact, my rubber products were unknowingly tested in USA by a member of the Sunbeam Rapier Club.

They both boiled and froze a Opening 1/4 vent seal rubber and reported that no variable difference between the two was apparent. These findings were published in club car magazine of which I still have a copy of today!


Initially sales were slow but with social media and connections made via various groups I am now the manufacturer and supplier of many specific parts for Rootes cars. I endeavour to make the best and highest quality product at an affordable price and most of my seals are made new to order from the latest available stock. Items like gear shift boots or opening vent seals are made by the latest moulding procedures and use of metal moulds so each product is identical and quality. I now ship my products all over the world.

I have in the past supplied the IMP Club UK and Sunbeam Rapier club UK and NZ, Singer Club UK, along with several other clubs. I support local and Interstate Australian manufacturers and businesses for both the Rubber and plastic parts. I supply for Rootes vehicles, however, if it is not practicable I source overseas suppliers.


Recently all items reproduced are done so with permission of Rootes Archive Trust and original factory drawings. I have concentrated my efforts on designing Rootes car parts as very few other suppliers focus on these vehicles. This started as a hobby and now I make and supply over 100 different Rootes seals and products and have sold thousands of seals.

I have over 1900 happy buyers from the last 10 years of business! I truly love what I do.

Thank you to all who have supported and continue to support my products and business.


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