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Austin J40

  • Object:

    Pedal car

  • Place of origin:

    Wales (manufactured)

  • Date:

    1959 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Austin (manufacturers)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Metal and plastic

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mr R. Sergeant

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Museum of Childhood, Moving Toys Gallery, case 8

Physical description

Open top car made from red painted metal with a brown plastic seat, white painted metal steering wheel and driving control panel. The bonnet opens to reveal a panel representing the engine.The two head lamps are battery operated and can be attached to electrical connections under the bonnet. The boot opens. The car has rubber tyres with metal hub caps.

Place of Origin

Wales (manufactured)


1959 (made)


Austin (manufacturers)

Materials and Techniques

Metal and plastic


Length: 152.5 cm overall

Object history note

Given by Mr. R. Sergeant, England 1959. [77/23]

Historical context note

The shape of the J40 pedal car was based on Austin's 1948 A40 Devon and Dorset. The factory in which they were made, at Bargoed in South Wales, had been established in 1949 with UK government funding for the employment of disabled coal miners.

Descriptive line

Metal child's pedal car 'Austin' made in England in 1959

Labels and date

Child's Austin pedal car, 1959
This car is very realistc. It has battery-operated head lights and when you open the bonnet it looks as if a real engine is inside. Made in England. []

Production Note

More than 32,000 Austin Junior Forty (J40) pedal cars were made between 1950 and 1971, at the Austin Junior Car Factory at Bargoed in South Wales. They were constructed from scrap off-cuttings from Austin's factory at Longbridge.


Metal; Plastic; Rubber


Metalcutting; Painting

Subjects depicted



Children & Childhood; Dolls & Toys; Toy vehicles; Outdoor games & toys

Production Type

Mass produced


Museum of Childhood

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