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IP Automotive LTD


1956-64 IP Lily Mk2

To call the second generation IP Lily a complete failure would be too harsh, because it certainly was not. When the production ceased after eight years, it was the second most sold model in the history of the company, and like its predecessor, it remained the most sold car of Mamaya for all of those years.

But failing to beat its predecessor in a market that was steadily growing was on the other hand not a very good achievement. But already at the launch it was met with disappointment from many people. One thing that was turning buyers away was the styling of the body. The original Lily had been up to date when launched in 1946, and it had kind of a minimalistic and simple design, in a cute kind of way, hence the nickname “the little frog” it quickly recieved from the people. This generation was something as a mix of modern styling cues with a shape that was quickly getting old, and proportions borrowed from the Mk1 Lily in a much larger format.

Because larger it was. IP had the idea that people would lose interest in small, cramped and crude cars when the economy would be good enough to buy something bigger. But considering the traffic that only got worse every day, in cramped cities were the streets was made with donkeys and carts in mind, many people was appreciating the nimble size of the Mk1 Lily and did not like the larger dimensions. The interior space grew too, however, and could now fit five people, while the Mk1 only had seating for four. The headlamp arrangement and some of the chrome trim was inspired by the Royalist, but there was nothing even close to the sleek and elegant lines of the luxury limousine in the smaller family sedan. However, the Superlily style door handles was a feature that was liked by many buyers.

Under the body there was nothing controversial though, still built on a separate chassis and with a leaf sprung rear end, it was getting dated quickly when competitors came out with more modern cars. The big news was under the bonnet though, we said goodbye to the Meteor three-pot and got three versions of the four cylinder version of the “Saturn” engine, first seen in the Mastercab. The Lily 1500S recieved an (obviously) 1.5 liter version, 49 hp (36 kW), while the 1700DX got a bigger 1.7 litre version with 53 hp (39 kW). Both of them, however, was slower than the original Lily 1200S up to 100, at 22.1 and 20 seconds compared to the 19.6 of the Mk1. At 112 and 115 km/h, the top speed was just marginally higher, too. The 78 hp 1700GTX of course had better performance with a top speed of 142 km/h and doing the 0-100 sprint in 16.3 seconds. Although much higher top speed, it was still accelerating slower up to 100 than the 1400DX Mk1.

The problem was also that a good variant “in between” was missing. The 1500S was slow and underpowered while the 1700DX was not much better, while the 1700 version of the engine was far less refined than the 1500, and the price higher. The 1700GTX, however, was too much of an enthusiast car to be a realistic alternative for most families.


On the outside, the 1700 versions was identified by chrome trim around the windshield. Also, the GTX version used a headlight arrangement similar to the Royalist, with stacked dual headlamps, while the 1500S and 1700DX recieved only single headlights. The air ducts for the heater also was chrome on the 1700GTX version only.

Very much indeed happened with IP during the years the Mk2 Lily was produced. Not only did they introduce the successor to the Superlily, the IP Flaire, a 4x4, the IP Brigadeer, and the new middle class vehicle to slot in between the Lily and the Royalist, the IP Icarus. They also bought the remains of the bankrupt Kingston automobile brand, which meant that they not only got the ancient Kingston Greenwood in their lineup, but also the sports sedan project that was the black pit for Kingston, the Celestia. Alongside the Celestia, it was obvious that the second generation Lily was turning into a dinosaur and finally in 1965, it was time to retire the second generation, missed by hardly anyone at all.

Today, the prices of the Mk2 remain sane, after all it WAS the most sold car in the lineup, so there is plenty of them left, and there is no reason to buy a bad example. Not even the 1700GTX have recieved much of a collectors status, which makes it the best buy of the bunch as the only one that can keep up with modern traffic.


1958-67 IP Flaire

Six years after the flop with the Superlily, IP decided that it was the time to try another sports car. This time they had learned from their mistake and the Flaire was a completely different beast from the Superlily. Gone was the ancient Lily chassis frame and the handmade aluminium body, instead, for the first time in history, IP went for a monocoque construction. Another first: the rear axle now was mounted on coil springs and left the old leaf springs behind, a step forward even if it still wasn’t independent.

Under the bonnet you no longer found a shaking 1500 cc 3-cylinder, instead the 1900 Saturn engine from the Mastercab had recieved dual carburetors, a new head with smaller combustion chambers, and a sportier cam profile. The result was a power output of 76 hp and a torque of 140 Nm, maybe not impressive by todays standards or even then, but it still gave the light car decent performance. The 0-100 sprint was done in 15.2 seconds and maximum speed was 162 km/h.

Unlike its predecessor, the Flaire enjoyed a moderate success. It was of course not a volume model, expensive and impractical as it was compared to the Lily, but it still boosted IP as a brand, especially on the export markets.

In 1966, it recieved the “Hicam” 4-cylinder engine, which had 26 hp and 10 Nm more than the Saturn engine it replaced. That raised the top speed to 172 km/h and improved the 0-100 time to 12.1 seconds. Also, disc brakes up front made the stopping more secure. On the outside it was fewer changes. The turn signals were now orange, there was separate reversing lights in the rear since the turn signals now were where the reversing light originally was, and the chrome trim on the bonnet disappeared. That helped to blow some new life into the Flaire until it was replaced by the Flaire II in 1968.

Today, the prices are steadily rising, the Flaire definitely have recieved collector car status, and the most sought after model years are the 1966 and 67 Flaires, since it had only moderate changes to the outside but was more modern underneath with better brakes and performance.