The Ford Anglia name was applied to four models of car between 1939 and 1967.
The first model, launched in 1939 and given the internal Ford model code of E04A, was a simple vehicle aimed at the cheap end of the market, with few features. Most were painted Ford black. Styling was typically late-30s, with an upright radiator. Production ceased in 1948 for a total of 55,807 built.
The 1948 model, code E494A, was a makeover of the previous model with a rather more '40s style front-end, including the sloped, twin-lobed radiator grille, rather reminiscent of a BMW. Again it was a very spartan vehicle. While production as an Anglia ceased in 1953, it continued on as the extremely basic Ford Popular until 1959. Including all production, 108,878 were built.
The 1953 model, sold as an Anglia at the lower end and as the Ford Prefect in higher models, used the Ford product code 100E for both. This was a completely new car, losing the antiquated look of the previous models for a more modern 'three-box' style. Internally, things were not so modern; the engine was still an antiquated side-valve unit and it had vacuum-operated wipers, notorious for slowing down when driving up steep hills. However, they sold well; by the time production ceased in 1959, 345,841 had rolled off the production line.
The final Anglia model was the 105E, introduced in 1959. Its American-influenced styling included a nose line sweeping down to a slanted grille in between prominent 'eye' headlamps. Its smoothly sloped line there looked more like a '50s Studebaker than the more aggressive-looking late-50s American Fords, possibly because its British designers used wind-tunnel testing and streamlining. Like late-50s Lincolnss and Mercuryss, the car sported a backward-slanted rear window and a flat roofline (which gave it reasonable rear headroom) and it had tailfins, albeit much toned-down from its American counterparts.
The new styling was matched by a new engine, something that the smaller Fords had been needing for some time - a 997cc overhead-valve straight-4. Acceleration from rest was still, by the standards of today, sluggish, but it was much improved from earlier cars.
The same car was also sold in Europe. One Europe-only variant was the Anglia Sportsman that carried its spare tyre on the back, somewhat similar to the Continental kit style often seen in the United States. Chrome bumper overriders were also fitted, broad white stripe tyres, and optionally a side stripe kicking up at the end into the taillights/fin.
A light blue Ford Anglia 105E features as the flying car from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. The Anglia in the book can magically stretch to accommodate all the Weasleys and Harry, become invisible and fly.