View Full Version : mini years?

02-10-2003, 05:13 PM
Hi David!
Welcome to the best forum on the net. Good luck in your search for a good Mini and do stay in touch.

02-11-2003, 12:03 AM
David, Try these:




In the U.S., any Mini 25 years or older is legal. In Canada, I think the limit is 15 years. For better or worse, most customs inspectors can't tell a '76 from a '96, so there are a lot of newer cars around. Most carry the VIN of an older car that came to an untimely end. Personally, I'm not enough of a gambler to take a chance on a newer (or re-vinned) car. Although there were a few significant changes (hydrolastic suspension, transmission changes, fuel injection, etc.) the basic car remained much the same from 1959 to 2000. With tons of parts available, you can build or find nearly anthing you want. If you're going for an authentic restoration, it gets a little tougher, since customizing is a big part of Mini culture, but very nice cars are still available in the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Great Britain.

Good luck with your search. Mini folks are great fun. If you get the time, there are 3 big Mini gatherings in North America this year: Spring Thing in St Petersburg, FL 3/7-3/9; Mini Meet East in Montreal 7/1-7/4; Mini Meet West in Victoria, BC 8/11-8/15. All the shows should get over 100 classic Minis and a few dozen new MINIS along with attendees from all over N. America. There are almost certain to be a few Brits at each of the shows and possibly some Australians, Germans, and other enthusiasts from around the world.

Like someone else said, check out Mini Mania's classified ads and discussion board. It's almost exclusively devoted to the classic Mini, and about 2/3 of the members are from N. America.

02-11-2003, 02:00 AM
Can anyone recomend any particular Mini dealers? I'd love to get a classic one for a couple grand that I could work on.

02-11-2003, 04:26 AM
Hi there, I have been into cars my whole life, but had mostly aircooled Volkswagens. (I'm proud to say that every car that I have owned has been older than me!!) I am now looking to buy a mini, and to get into the British cars. I have always loved british cars, but have never owned one. Anyways, my question is what year is best for the minis. Where there any years that there were big changes?

or, does anyone know of any site that has a list kind of like this one?

Thanks, any input would be greatly appreciated.


02-11-2003, 04:33 AM
Hi David,

Cool picture in your profile! I assume you are from B.C.

You should check out a site called Mini Mania, www.minimania.com (https://www.minimania.com) . It is a well done site put together by a Mini owner in B.C. and has lots of great information and links. Take a browse through the classifieds links and look up a site called "Craig's...", it has lots of Canadian Mini listings.

02-11-2003, 05:34 AM
Hi again David,

I referenced the wrong website (Mini Mania is a great one too though!) The one I was thinking of is called Mini Portal - www.miniportal.ca (https://www.miniportal.ca) , also a great website for Mini's.

Up in Canada there are still many Mini 1000's kicking around, and many for sale (they were sold up here right up to 1980). Across the country there are piles of 1975 to 1980 vintage Mini's still left, and many available. The stock engine for Canadian export versions, as sold new, is a 998-cc engine. Many of these cars have received the 1275-cc Austin engine over the years, which fits right in and doesn't alter the appearance.

Earlier models from the 1960's are harder to find, although many are coming into North America from England, New Zealand and Australia. One other Mini commonly found here now are the early-1980's Rover shelled Minis (still basically the same Mini though), people are bringing them in from both England (in RHD) and Germany (in LHD). In Canada it is legal to sell a 1987 or older Mini, as stated above.

02-11-2003, 11:27 PM
BuddyJ, Barn Hill Minis https://www.barnhillminisusa.com/ is one of the best Mini dealers in the US/UK, but finding a Mini for "a couple grand" is a VERY tall order. Even a serious project car will run $3000. A runner will start at $4000 minimum. ...supply and demand...

02-12-2003, 02:02 AM
OK. Barnhill's prices seemed a bit high last time I checked. The only other place I'd found that looked reputable was www.classiccore.com (https://www.classiccore.com)

My goal is to find a classic one with the center mounted speedo in good running condition but with bad cosmetics that I could pick up for around $5k. I work in an upholstery shop for airplanes so redoing the interior is no big deal. Then I'd paint it and work on building a street engine.

02-12-2003, 05:32 AM
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr> BuddyJ said: Can anyone recomend any particular Mini dealers? I'd love to get a classic one for a couple grand that I could work on. <hr></blockquote>

I know that prices on Minis down in the States are getting high now, one look at Hemmings Motor News, or any other publication bears this out.

But up here in Canada there are lots of Mini restoration projects still left over from when they sold them as new models here in the 1970's. I have heard from Mini guys that most of the ones in the States have been imported in, as sales of the Mini ceased down there in 1967 - so most people probably bring in cars that are on the road. Up here where they were sold until 1980 there are still many around, in various states of repair. The most common ones found up here are the Mini 1000 models between the years 1975 and 1980. And project cars from those years can be had for less than $2,000 (CDN) with enough hunting around - which is penny change to you guys down in the States with our lousy exchange rate.

For a glimpse into the Canadian Mini scene you can check out www.miniportal.ca (https://www.miniportal.ca)