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Lot 321: Morris Mini Minor Saloon

Collectors' Motor Cars and Automobilia, Bonhams (2 March 2013)

One of the most influential automobiles of all time, the Alec Issigonis-designed Mini debuted in 1959 to universal acclaim. True, there had been numerous front-wheel-drive designs before the Mini's arrival, but the transverse engine layout allowed Issigonis to create a trend-setting masterpiece of automotive packaging. The first Mini prototypes were running by November 1957 and in April 1959 the first pre-production examples were hand-assembled at Austin's Longbridge factory. In May 1959, the first Morris-badged version was built at Cowley and that car, registration '621 AOK', now forms part of the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust's collection at Gaydon. Less than two-and-a-half years after its initial conception the Mini was officially launched at the 1959 Motor Show, having been shown to the motoring press eight days previously. BMC chose to market the car as the 'Austin Se7en' and 'Morris Mini Minor' before 'Mini' became a marque in its own right in 1969. In due course estate and van versions arrived, larger engines became available, more luxurious Riley and Wolseley models joined the line-up and the sporting Mini Cooper was introduced. The early Mk1 had the 848cc A-Series engine, rubber cone suspension and floor-mounted starter button, the latter two features being replaced by Hydrolastic suspension and key starting respectively in 1964. De Luxe versions preferred by the majority of customers came with bumper over-riders and additional exterior brightwork. Manufactured in 1959, this very early Morris Mini Minor is the 529th example produced (the Morris chassis number sequence began at 'MA2S4/101'). Refinished in blue but originally cherry red, '620 GFC' enjoyed one owner for approximately 50 years and has been in barn storage for the last 35-40, possibly placed there following damage to the off-side front wing. The recorded mileage of 46,971 is believed correct. It is believed that the engine was reconditioned at some time. There can be few older survivors than '620 GFC', which represents a wonderful opportunity to acquire an example of one of the 20th Century's greatest cars in its earliest and purest form, ripe for sympathetic restoration. There are no documents with this Lot, which is sold strictly as viewed.

Lot Details
Auction Collectors' Motor Cars and Automobilia
Bonhams, Oxford. UK
TypeCar
Lot Number321
Estimate£6000-£10000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price£6000
Hammer Price (inc premium)£6900
Year1959
Condition rating
Registration number620 GFC
Mileage-
Chassis numberM/A2S4/629
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors