Nicknamed the "Baby Austin", the Austin 7 is an economy car that was produced from 1922 until 1939 in the United Kingdom by Austin. and can reasonably be considered British equivalent of the American "Ford Model T", having a significant impact on social and economical areas.
It was at that time (and remains still) one of the most popular cars produced for the British market and sold well abroad.
The Austin 7 was so successful that it replaced most other British economy cars and cyclecars of the early 1920s.
It was also licensed and copied by companies all over the world.
The very first BMW car, the BMW Dixi, was a licensed Austin 7, as were the original American Austins. In France they were made and sold as Rosengarts. In Japan, Nissan also used the 7 design as the basis for their first cars, although not under licence. This eventually led to a 1952 agreement for Nissan to build and sell Austins in Japan under the Austin name.
Many Austin 7s were rebuilt as "specials" after the Second World War, including the first race car built by Bruce McLaren, and the first Lotus, the Mark I.
Such was the power of the Austin 7 name that the company re-used it for early versions of the A30 in 1951 and Mini in 1959.
Having lived with one of these delightful cars for a couple of years, I can assure you that they are a LOT of fun, incredibly simple to maintain, cheap to run, and a fantastic conversation starter - almost EVERYONE will stop and ask a question or two about it!