Alec Issigonis’ friend John Cooper, owner of the Cooper Car Company and designer and builder of Formula 1 and Sports Cars, saw the potential of the Mini for competition. Issigonis was initially reluctant to see the Mini as a performance car, but after John Cooper appealed to BMC management, the two men collaborated to create the Mini Cooper, and the Austin and Morris Mini Coopers debuted simultaneously in 1961. Some six years later, the Cooper Mk II’s appeared and were more refined without diluting the out and out fun of these amazing little cars. The overall production figures of the Mk II were only just behind the earlier cars.
Offered here is an Austin Mini Cooper Mk II, finished in the classic combination of Peony Red with a Black roof. Exported to Spain in February 1969, where the car has spent the majority of its life until 2015, when the Mini was repatriated to the UK. Benefitting from a previous restoration, the Mini is said to present well and has substantiating history also with MOT’s since its return. Launched in 1967, the Mk II Coopers are regarded by many, in hindsight, as the most attractive of the Mini Cooper evolution with the squared rear lights, larger rear window, and new grille, but still retaining the sliding windows and one or two early features so characteristic of the original Mini. The look is further enhanced with the slightly wider vented steel rims.
First registered in April 1968, this early Mark II Cooper has had just one owner until 2019, spending around 45 years of that time in storage. Offered for the first time on public sale since it was first delivered, and wearing its original colour scheme of Tartan Red with a black roof and trim, this is an enticing prospect for a complete rebuild to concours standards. The Morris Cooper is offered with a British Motor Heritage certificate in addition to UK V5C document.