Instantly recognised around the world, the “classic” Mini is without doubt one of the most illustrious cars to be designed and manufactured in Britain. Produced by the British Motor Company (BMC) and Rover between 1959-2000, the Mini was actually conceived out of austerity. Sir Leonard Lord (Head of the Morris Company) commissioned his lead engineer, Alec Issigonis, to design a small fuel-efficient car capable of carrying four adults and yet be affordable to all. Since small was fashionable Issigonis was also told that the new vehicle had to fit into a box no larger than 10ft long x 4ft wide x 4ft high. It was from this challenge that the Mini was born. Amazingly, despite a few minor modifications over the years, the overall concept and design for the vehicle remained largely true to Issigonis’s initial idea. Though small in size, the Mini’s space-saving transverse engine and front-wheel drive arrangement allowed for 80% of the floorplan area to be used for occupants and their luggage, a layout that influenced a generation of car manufacturers.
While the car would prove to be a great example of well-engineered micro design, the iconic Mini persona is really its most enduring legacy. The crowning glory came in 1999 when the Mini was voted the second most influential car of the 20th century (behind the Ford Model T) by the Global Automotive Elections Foundation. Awarded merely a year before the final Mini would roll off the Longbridge production line, it was perhaps a fitting farewell to a car which had endured largely unchanged for over 4 decades, had sold 5,387,862 examples to every corner of the globe, and whose honest construction had entered the hearts of us all.
This Mini Cooper 1.3i was first registered on 20th August 1997 and is presented in Flame Red with contrasting white roof and body decals. Features include Rallye-style spot lights, Minilite alloy wheels, half leather seats, chrome interior trim and a burr walnut dash with magnolia faced dials. The car has been under the same lady ownership since 2005 and boasts 57,000 warranted miles from new with two former keepers.
The Mini is in fantastic condition throughout and benefits from extensive Heritage panel replacements in 2015 and a new rear subframe fitted in 2019. All four tyres were replaced approximately 1,000 miles ago. She is sold newly serviced and MoT’d until 26th September 2022 and supplied with a file of service history, MoT certificates and sundry receipts dating back to the point of registration. The original service book together with owner’s handbooks are also present.