It is 57 years today since the launch of the classic Mini – the very day when the first and very wee-looking Mini made its debut. Little was it known in 1959 that the classic heritage Mini, in all its forms, would become such a cult car. Our Mini Cooper is not as old as that, but is fully serviceable, fully winter-proofed and still on the road – not a show car but one used virtually every day from May through to November. She is undergoing gradual upgrading with stainless steel components replacing the horrible-looking mild steel ones.
We bought her new from a dealer in Swindon to replace an older Mini Sprite which was stolen (probably to order for shipping to Japan) – the Sprite had been in the family for years. This car still takes a little driving compared to modern cars.
So what has she got? Well, no power steering; no traction control; no electric windows, central locking, keyless entry, satnav, heated seats, dual climate control, ABS or gadgets of any kind. There’s an engine, clutch, four-speed gear box, throttle and brakes – and of course – me! It’s a car that has to be driven and a whole lot of fun she is too!
When the sun shines, which it does a lot on the Moray coast at this time of year, ‘The Min’ comes out to play. When early November arrives and the weather closes in, she is tucked up for the winter, snug and sound until the weather becomes Mini-friendly once again. So happy birthday to the classic heritage Mini! Only three years to go until the BIG 60!!