The Corpus Christi Old Car Museum Auction

Lot 8
1973 Austin Mini 1000

Selling on Friday

1973 Austin Mini 1000


• Affordable example of a postwar motoring icon
• Desirable left-hand drive example
• Funky added graphics and fun attitude
• Offered from dry storage; recommission and enjoy!

1.0-litre OHV four-cylinder engine, four-speed manual gearbox in front transaxle, independent front suspension, hydraulic brakes; wheelbase: 80"

The 1959 debut of famed designer Alec (later Sir Alec) Issigonis’ Mini designed for BMC rewrote the book on small cars. Barely 10 feet long, with a small but peppy transverse four-cylinder engine, 10-inch wheels and front-wheel drive, the Mini could carry up to four adults at 75 mph and achieve nearly 40 mpg. The car was a huge hit, and by the time production finally ended in 2000, nearly 5.5 million had sold. A global phenomenon, the Mini was manufactured at the historic Longbridge and Cowley plants in England, and in Australia, Spain, Belgium, Chile, Italy, Malta, Portugal, South Africa, Uruguay, Venezuela and Yugoslavia. Produced along three distinct evolutions, the Mini was available in a such variations as the Clubman, estate cars, pickup trucks, vans, and the Mini Moke, a military-intended model that was repurposed to civilian use by BMC and sold as a fun beach car.

In testament to its groundbreaking nature, the Mini was voted the second most influential automobile of the 20th Century, behind only Henry Ford’s Model T. While initially intended as practical, economical transportation, the Mini, as massaged by famed race-car builder John Cooper, took the international racing world by storm by winning the Monte Carlo Rally from 1964 through 1967, in addition to countless circuit-racing victories. License-built versions of the Mini were also produced in both Italy and Spain. In 1969, the iconic British crime-caper film, the “Italian Job” gave a boost to Austin’s sales. Starring Michael Caine and Benny Hill, among other well-known British actors, the anti-heroes used three Minis to escape the Italian Polizia during a chase sequence through the sewers of Turin.

Finished in red with a white roof and black upholstery, this desirable left-hand drive Mini has accumulated less than 55,000 indicated miles prior to placement in long-term storage. Cheeky floral graphics and “Road Runner” cartoon characters add a touch of fun. The interior compartment is clean in appearance and features an aftermarket sport steering wheel and a nice wood grain dash panel. As offered, it could be reviewed mechanically, cleaned and detailed for a very fun classic ride. Alternatively, it could provide a nice restoration candidate with proper factory finishes.

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