The Mini is a small economy car produced by the English based British Motor Corporation and its successors from 1959 until 2000. The original is considered an icon of 1960s British popular culture. Its space-saving transverse engine front-wheel drive layout – allowing 80 percent of the area of the car’s floorpan to be used for passengers and luggage – influenced a generation of car makers. In 1999 the Mini was voted the second most influential car of the 20th century, behind the Ford Model T, and ahead of the Citroën DS and Volkswagen Beetle. This distinctive two-door car was designed for BMC by Sir Alec Issigonis. The Mini Mark I had three major UK updates – the Mark II, the Clubman and the Mark III. The performance versions, the Mini Cooper and Cooper “S,” were successful as both race and rally cars, winning the Monte Carlo Rally in 1964, 1965 and 1967.
Billed as the replacement to the Cooper S, the Mini 1275GT featured a 1275cc 4 cylinder engine with 60BHP. It was built between 1969 and 1980 and was distinctive due to its Clubman front end. Roy Haynes was in charge of the controversial restyling which wasn’t embraced by all Mini fans at the time. The world’s first run flat tyre was added to the 1275GT. The Dunlop Denovo tyres were fitted to the 1275GT and were capable of travelling 40 miles at up to 50 mph. Another first that can be attributed to the 1275GT is the use of a flexi printed circuit board behind the dash instruments. This car was also the first mini to be made with a tachometer.
In 1971 the Mini Cooper S was discontinued in the UK so the 1275GT was left to be the only hot mini of the time. Although often criticised because of its weight, it still boasted impressive stats, with a top speed of 87mph and a 0-60 time of 13.5 seconds. The 1275GT offered more sophistication than the Cooper, with front disc brakes and an improved interior.
Heated rear screen, Two speed wipers, Rear quarter lights, Goodman speaker system, Interior light, Twin ‘eyeball’ vents with heater.
The original round front 1959 Mini design is a tried and true classic, but the 1275 GT marked a unique point in styling for the cult-followed British “People’s Car.” With a boxier front end, 70s flank graphics and unique standard equipment, the 1275 GT is still very much Mini, just with some added flair. Finished in the vibrant shade of Blaze Orange, this little Mini certainly catches your attention. Paintwork whilst not concours, still remains in very honest condition having been stored carefully by the same owner for almost 30 years, to which it has kept its most sought after originality.
Inside the 1275 GT, you’ll find more updates to the Mini template. The standard car’s trademark central speedo was replaced by a three-dial binnacle in front of the driver, and two ‘eyeball’ vents at either end of the dash provided much improved ventilation. The interior on this example continues the trend of honesty and originality. The headlining, door cards and floor covering all present in excellent overall order, whilst the fabric seats are free from marks or tears – as to be expected from such an under-utilised, lovingly owned example.
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
The 1275cc engine delivers a mere 59bhp, but thanks to a sharp throttle and short gearing the GT feels eager on the move and produced impressive stats. Having been subtly recommissioned following a long period of dry storage, the engine now fires instantly on demand without any evidence of undue smoke and settles into a steady idle. The four-speed manual gearbox remains tight and precise producing undiminished speed through the gears.
WHEELS, TYRES & BRAKES
The correct and original 12″ GT styling steel wheels remain on this 1275 GT, all four of which present in good condition given the cars age. Wheels are shod in the correct Dunlop Denovo Runflat tyres.
First registered on 23rd August 1979, this 1275 GT changed hands to its second owner in January of 1986 and has stayed under their long term ownership for over 30 years!
Having been driven and enjoyed for the first three years, in 1989 it was then put into dry storage to which its originality and condition has been preserved. Remarkably this 1275 GT’s history file still holds many invoices and MOT’s dating back to as early as 1985. The original owners wallet and all handbooks are also present.
This very genuine car still starts on demand and has just been given a clean bill of health with a fresh MOT issued, making it the most ideal candidate for a sympathetic restoration to bring it back to its former glory.
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