When you look at these photos of the 1959 Austin Mini Seven De Luxe it’s hard to believe it has anything in common with the BMW MINI, but it has. Without the BMC Mini , the BMW MINI wouldn’t exist.
This particular 1959 Mini is an Austin Seven (or, if you prefer, Austin Se7en – although it was never badged as such) and is only the eighth Mini ever made, three months before the Mini launched.
It is thought to be the third oldest Mini still in existence and is – apart from one door skin – entirely original. Amazingly, it still has its original sub frame and comes with the early Mini rubber cone suspension and has done just 30,041 miles.
Finished in Farina Grey, XLL 27 has plenty of the patina of age but looks to be a doable restoration project without having to sacrifice too much originality. All the interior trim – apart from carpets – is intact too and the little Austin still has its original engine.
This Mini started its life in Colchester at Car Mart Ltd in 1959, was subsequently owned by a lady in Bognor Regis (which won’t have helped the rust) and has, since 1986 until last year, hibernated unused in the garage of one David Gallimore of Chichester.
Going under the hammer at Bonham’s auction at the RAF Museum in Hendon on 30th April it’s expected to fetch between £12-15k.
Which seems peanuts for such an early example of an iconic car.