To many, its designer Alec Issigonis included, the notion that the Mini might have a future as anything other than basic transport was anathema, and the idea of a high-performance version was laughable. One man though, saw it quite differently. Racing car manufacturer John Cooper already knew quite a bit about tuning BMC’s A-Series engine – he was running the company’s Formula Junior effort at the time – and a test drive in a prototype Mini convinced him of the car’s competition potential.
This exceptional Mini is the first ever of its kind to finish the Peking to Paris endurance rally. Spending 36 days on the road and travelling a breath-taking 13,700 kilometres the car and its drivers finished in style coming a formidable 22nd position overall. Prior to its heroic journey from Peking to Paris in 2016, the car also partook in the Sahara Challenge 10 day rally in 2015.
In preparation for these incredibly demanding rallies the Mini received a full strip and re rebuild in 2014 by Owen Turner at TMS Bury St Edmonds. Works included a fully seam welded shell, full repaint, double skinned floor, all of the correct rally mods, fully adjustable suspension, 2 fuel tanks, rollcage, trip meters and much more. Numerous photos are available on request of the car taking part in these rallies.