When people discuss special edition Minis, the popular perception is that this is phenomenon that kicked off during the late-1980s in order to sell more cars. But pretty much from the moment the Mini was launched back in 1959, dealers as well as its maker built bespoke and upgraded versions. However, it’s the 1979 20th anniversary edition – the 1100 Special – that remains for some, a favourite of all time.
The 1100 Special was launched in August 1979 the celebrate the Mini’s 20th anniversary. Unlike most that came before, the 1100 Special was mechanically, as well as cosmetically, upgraded. Powering the car was a 1098cc Clubman-specification engine, pushing out 45bhp and 57lbft – and was the only non-Haynes fronted Mini to benefit from the 1100.
The Mini Special needed a little love and attention to refresh this limited edition model and ensure its exclusivity matched its name. Parts of the Mini were stripped, retaining original parts where possible. The engine was rebuilt and converted for additional power and performance and signs of rust were identified and removed.
New doors and panels were replaced on problem areas and the body shell was smoothed, primed and re-painted in metallic silver – a refreshing transformation for the Mini, which had lost it’s original sparkle. The Mini Special is homed at Mini Sport and maintained by our mechanics.