The MINI Cooper has, in one version or another, graced roads worldwide for almost 60 years. In this time, the company has changed hands several times, become a pop culture icon, and won both races as well as the hearts of those who have driven one. From humble origins, as a vehicle designed to take up less space on the road and use less fuel during a gas crisis, to the luxurious and fun to drive vehicle it is today, the MINI has changed substantially while still maintaining their motto of making driving fun. Read on, and find out more about the evolution of the MINI.
The evolution of the Mini continued as it made a name for itself on the world stage, winning the Monte Carlo Rally in 1964, ‘65, and ‘67. A Mini also took first in the ‘66 rally, but it and nine other cars were disqualified under a controversial decision claiming its headlights didn’t comply with the Rally’s rules. The Mini’s success at the Rally helped validate one John Cooper, whose company John Cooper Motor Works had been race-tuning the Mini with the initially reluctant help of friend Sir Alec Issigonis. The Mini Cooper, and more powerful Mini Cooper S, were a smash hit. It was only after the Mini brand had been licensed to an Italian company in the 70s, and a Spanish company in the 80s, that the name Mini Cooper disappeared.
The evolution of the Mini seemed to be over in 1994 when BMW bought the Rover Group (the name under which BMC had been operating for the last few years). They dismantled the company and sold off several of the subsidiary companies, but held on to the Mini marque. Mini had been releasing “special editions” of the vehicle throughout the 80s and 90s, and it was (thanks to its unique look) now seen as a fashionable vehicle to drive, especially in Japan. In 2000, the last of 5,387,862 Minis made by the Rover Group rolled off of the lot, and with it came the end of a British icon.
The evolution of the MINI has been going on for almost 60 years, and the future looks as bright as ever. If you’ve been a fan since the days it was the Mini, or have just found out about it recently, come to MINI Edmonton and we will do what we can to get you behind the wheel of the MINI that is right for you.