1966 AUSTIN MINI COOPER S

Lot Description

This 1966 Austin Mini Cooper S is a handsome and well-prepared example of the 1960s British classic, which has been extensively modified for fast road and competition use, and is in smart overall condition. Under the bonnet is the original A-series inline four-engine, which has been enlarged to 1293cc and produces 99bhp, as proven by a rolling road session. This drives the front wheels via a four-speed manual transmission.

Finished in Almond Green with an Old English White roof and a Porcelain Green and Dove Grey interior, this UK-market Mini Cooper S was built on 12 May 1966, and was specified with a fresh air heater, twin fuel tanks and an oil cooler. It was despatched to Wadham Ltd, Sussex on 1 June the same year, before being registered on 11 July.

The car’s logbook lists six prior keepers – with details of all owners on file – and it was acquired by its current owner approximately 14 years ago. During its life, this Cooper S has undergone significant mechanical modifications to prepare it for fast road and track use, and it has been featured in articles in Classic & Sports Car, Mini World, and Mini Magazine. One of its previous owners was Paul Costin, a renowned classic Mini specialist who owned the ‘Mini Car Co.’ in Surrey.

Furthermore, the vendor notes that the car was restored approximately 20 years ago, and its engine was rebuilt in 2003. While the odometer displays 13,069 miles, this figure is not the total from new. The odometer stopped working shortly before the vendor acquired the car in 2007, and they can confirm that it has covered less than 200 miles since then, as it formed part of a well-maintained private collection.

Today, the bodywork remains in good overall condition, and is not believed to have suffered from any prior accident damage. The seller describes the Almond Green paintwork as being in fair overall condition, and while it was resprayed during the car’s previous restoration, it would benefit from being refreshed as there are some stone chips and patches of minor corrosion around the vehicle, including bubbling on the wheel arches and beside the front and rear body seams.

This hot hatch’s exterior has been enhanced with the addition of anodised aluminium Raydyot door mirrors, while quick-release grille buttons have been added at the front. Its window glass is in good order, and so are the headlights, though there are cracks in both of the rear indicator lenses. This Mini rides on a set of 10-inch Vortz ‘rose petal’ alloy wheels with polished rims and matt black centres, which are in very good shape, with only some minor corrosion on their edges.

Stepping inside, the cabin presents very well. While it is not known whether the car’s interior has been retrimmed in the past, it seems almost certain given the impressive condition of the seats’ Porcelain Green and Dove Grey brocade vinyl coverings, which are free of any creases or other signs of wear. The doors also feature fluted grey brocade panels, which are in great shape, and the cream headlining is in good order.

It is the three-point Speedwell roll cage which sets this classic Mini apart from the crowd, which is finished in the body colour and is fitted with matching grey brocade pads. Continuing the motorsport theme, the driver’s seat is fitted with a Britax racing harness, while a Cooper Car Company rev counter pod has been added to the dashboard. There is a wood-rimmed Moto-Lita steering wheel and a metal Speedwell gear knob, which are both very smart. All of the car’s interior switches and electrical items work as they should, and there are no warning lights displayed on the dashboard.

Mechanically, this classic Mini is in fine fettle, having been carefully enhanced and routinely serviced in recent years. Most recently, the car underwent a full mechanical recommissioning in May 2019, which was carried out by The Mini Works. This included refurbishment of the brakes, hubs, drive shaft, ball joints, track rod ends and other suspension components. Furthermore, the fuel tanks, fuel lines and fuel pumps were also tended to, along with steering column, while the car’s spark plugs and battery were replaced. Its valve clearances were then checked and the car was fully tuned, which also included wheel alignment. The vendor also notes that its engine was fully rebuilt in March 2003 at a cost of nearly £2,500.

Far from a ‘standard’ Cooper S, this example has been extensively modified for increased performance and motorsport use. Starting with the heart of the car, its engine has been bored out from the standard 1275cc to 1293cc, and it fitted with MG Metro pistons, a nitrided crankshaft, a Piper 285/2 camshaft and a lightened flywheel. These are joined by a Longman GT7 cylinder head, and twin H4 SU carburettors on a Howe inlet manifold with tuned 2.5-inch aluminium ram pipes, while the exhaust is a Maniflow system.

The car is kept planted by height-adjustable suspension on each corner, which includes AVO shock absorbers and rear adjustable camber brackets, while braking is provided by Cooper S-specification front brake discs and drums at the rear, with Aeroquip braided hoses.

Although it is exempt due to its age, this Mini’s most recent MOT test was conducted on 19 July 2019, which resulted in a first-time pass with no advisories. All four wheels are fitted with Yokohama Advan-032R tyres in size 165/70 R10, which appear to be in good overall condition and with a decent amount of usable tread remaining.

The car will be accompanied by numerous documents that detail its history, including past MOT test certificates, invoices for parts and maintenance, and a number of old tax discs.

Famous the world over for its unique styling, engaging handling and motorsport successes, the Mk1 Austin Mini Cooper S is rightly held in high regard. Extensively modified for increased performance and benefitting from a recent mechanical refurbishment, this charming example could provide its next owner with the ideal entry point into historic racing, though it will be just as suited to fast road driving, where its exciting setup can be thoroughly enjoyed.

The description of this auction lot is, to the best of the seller's knowledge, accurate and not misleading. Collecting Cars requests a range of detail about the lot from the seller, and performs a level of due diligence. However, bidders must satisfy themselves as to the accuracy of the description, and conduct any research they feel is necessary before committing to a bid. Please see our Terms and Conditions for full details.

All UK-registered cars and motorbikes on Collecting Cars are run through an online HPI check. This vehicle shows no insurance database markers for damage or theft, and has no finance owing.

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Car Overview

  • 13,069 miles
  • manual
  • RHD
  • Almond Green
  • Porcelain Green / Dove Grey
  • 1275cc

VIN: C-A2S7/851195


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Lot Overview

  • Lot #02849
  • private Sale
  • Auchterarder, Scotland, United Kingdom

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  • jonathan_weir
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1966 AUSTIN MINI COOPER S
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