1974 Austin Mini Clubman


・Lovely 1,098cc Clubman
・Recent new rear subframe
・Respray in Glacier White with black vinyl roof
・Genuine low mileage

The Background

Some things in life are impossible to replace – and the classic Mini is one of them.

Just ask British Leyland, which tried to replace the 1959 original in 1970 with the launch of the Mini Clubman – a revised version of the original Mini with an instrument pack ahead of the driver and a new, squared-off flat nose. 

The Mini Clubman, as it became known, was styled under the direction of Roy Haynes, whom British Leyland had lured across from Ford Motor Company. Haynes had achieved great recognition for his Ford Cortina Mk 2, so it’s no coincidence at all that the Mini Clubman had similar styling cues – a flat nose, round headlamps, a vertical centre badge and under-bumper overriders among them.

Initially, the Clubman was sold as a more upmarket alternative to the Mini 850 and 1000, and in many ways that would be part of its downfall. The car was better than the round-nose Mini, but also substantially dearer. 

BL soldiered on, offering the Clubman and the standard Mini side-by-side for a decade, but ultimately the round-nose Mini continued to outsell its proposed replacement and the Clubman was dropped, 20 years before the last round-nose Mini would roll off the Longbridge production line. 

The Paperwork

There is quite a bit of paperwork with the car – old MOTs, bills and receipts, along with its original Mini Clubman Driver’s Handbook, a separate owners’ manual and a receipt for the car’s Accuspark electronic ignition upgrade. 

The Interior

Inside, the Clubman has had the benefit of a recent retrim, with the seats recovered in a replica of the original black vinyl. They’re in top condition, with no rips, tears, damage or sagging. 

There’s also a brand new black headlining to complete the look, while the original dash is in smart, presentable order. Deviations from standard are there primarily for functionality and comfort – namely a Kenwood CD-Stereo and a three-spoke steering wheel from a later Mini. 

The Exterior

Presented in Glacier White with a black vinyl roof, the Mini looks absolutely superb. It’s been properly prepped and painted and looks terrific for it, with smart 10-inch ‘Ultralite’ alloy wheels shod with recent Maxxis tyres. 

The paint has a couple of very small areas where it has been chipped slightly on the roof gutters and inside the door shuts, but other than that it’s in excellent order and is beautifully presented throughout. The floors are excellent and inside the wheel arches the Mini is very clean and free of rot. 

It has been fitted with period-authentic British Leyland badging  and a pair of Seventies Wipac front spot lamps for added retro appeal

The Mechanics

Power comes from BMC’s venerable A-Series engine, which in this case is the 50bhp 1,098cc unit that was originally developed for the Austin-Morris 1100. 

It’s a perfectly peppy engine in the little Mini and according to the vendor it is in fine order, starting and running sweetly and with no excess smoke or timing chain rattle, which is often found on A-Series motors. 

The car also has the benefit of Accuspark electronic ignition and has also had a recent brake overhaul. 

Of course, being both a Mini and an A-Series, anything you may well need for it over time is available off-the-shelf, so while no immediate repair work is apparent, you can also rest assured that should any be needed in the future, it’ll simply be a case of ordering whatever you need from a Mini specialist. 

The Appeal

Minis of all shapes and sizes are cars with an enduring appeal, but Clubmans are really on the up these days as fans cotton on to the fact they have both rarity value as well as added driver appeal – the larger engine and slightly more luxurious cabin making them easier to live with on longer journeys.

There’s also something pretty cool about that slabby front end – it may not have been universally loved when new, but it has aged brilliantly, with a distinctive face all of its own. 

This one has bags of appeal. It’s mostly original, but with a couple of very subtle sporting mods in the form of the alloys and driving lamps, while the electronic ignition will make it easier to start in the wet – something that Longbridge-made cars of the era aren’t exactly good at if conventional wisdom is to be believed. 

It’s a great Mini that truly defines its era, in one of the best colour-schemes, with low miles and the benefit of a new rear subframe and good floors meaning all the next owner has to do is enjoy it and look after it. 

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1974
  • Make Austin
  • Model Mini Clubman
  • Colour White
  • Odometer 48,253 Miles
  • Engine size 1098
  • Location Somerset
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
15 bids from 9 bidders
  • taylor.•••• £10,750 29/10/21
  • officia•••• £10,500 29/10/21
  • taylor.•••• £10,250 29/10/21
  • officia•••• £10,000 29/10/21
  • Johnnya•••• £9,500 29/10/21
  • Johnnya•••• £8,500 29/10/21
  • lx.450l•••• £7,000 28/10/21
  • Highfly•••• £6,500 24/10/21
  • NigeC&C £5,850 24/10/21
  • mhbel £5,200 23/10/21

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