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Mini Cooper
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Mini Cooper

Mini Cooper (United Kingdom, 1961)

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General Characteristics

The idea of using Mini as a racing car popped up in John Cooper mind a couple of years after the model debut. The Mini designer Issigonis didn’t appreciate the idea, but the British Motor Company liked it and gave green light to the project. From Issigonis and Cooper collaboration the Mini Cooper was born in 1961 bagded as Austin and also as Morris. The Mini Cooper was presented in September 20th of 1961.

The Mini Cooper was received enthusiastically and Cooper managed to persuade the British Motor Company to manufacture one thousand units. The production started slow, in 11 July 1961, but at end of the year, 1775 units had left the factory. In total, 24860 units of this version were produced.

This version was replaced in 1963 by a Cooper with a 998 cc engine.



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Engine and Transmission

The 848 cc engine from the original version was enhanced into a 997 cc in the Cooper. This version had also twin SU carburetors. The novelty of this racing car was the front disc brakes that were unusual in a small car. The brakes were 7 in. diameter Lockheed.



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Body and Design

There weren’t many differences design wise between the original Mini and the Cooper. One of them was the carpeted boot board that concealed a spare tire and a new speedometer that included the mark 100mph. The two-tone paint schemes were also a new feature on the Cooper, but other super versions would have that option around the same time.

The Austin and Morris versions differed in the front grille and of course, the badging.



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The original Mini was debuted in 1959 and became an instant hit. Its popularity has granted him the several titles, as “Car of the Century”, “Number One Classic Car of All Time” and “European Car of the Century”, among others. It all started with a fuel shortage in 1956, because of the crisis over the Suez Canal. With rationed petrol on the UK, the sales of larger cars plunged while the German miniature cars’ were growing. Mini was the projec...  more
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