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 Post subject: Mid engined Rover Minis
PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 5:40 pm 
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Years ago I met a guy over there who swears BMC/BLM built a few Rally minis with the rover engine/gearbox as a mid engine 4Wd rally car. He even said there were a few of them stored in a yard.
That would have been around 1970....anyone know of these cars...did they really exist???...if so...what happened to them?
Peter, you recall if these were built????


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 6:24 pm 
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Location: Newton Abbot
There was a Buick/Rover V8 rear engined Mini that was front wheel drive. http://www.jdclassics.com/showrooms/1965-Mini-Cooper-S-Buick-V8/f4ba9eb8-014f-48ed-f3fe-08d526a380ce

There was also a 4WD A-series Clubman built by the factory for grass track racing. http://tentenths.com/forum/showthread.php?t=143380

I've never heard of a V8 4WD mini from the factory though.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:33 pm 
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"There was also a 4WD A-series Clubman built by the factory for grass track racing. http://tentenths.com/forum/showthread.php?t=143380"
Not grass track - Rally cross. :D


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 1:40 am 
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360gts wrote:
Years ago I met a guy over there who swears BMC/BLM built a few Rally minis with the rover engine/gearbox as a mid engine 4Wd rally car. He even said there were a few of them stored in a yard.
That would have been around 1970....anyone know of these cars...did they really exist???...if so...what happened to them?
Peter, you recall if these were built????


The only mid engine 4WD rally car I am aware of that BL made was the 6R4 Metro and that was early 80's. That was based on the V8 block (a V8 cut in half and the second pair of cylinders cut out and then welded back together) for the first ten or so engines, then their own unique block.

Rover did make a mid engined 'sports' prototype with the V8 but that was read drive and definitely not mini sized or shaped.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 3:27 am 
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Video of the 4x4 mini here https://www.facebook.com/racemini.nl/vi ... 084719939/ The rear suspention on the car is very interesting. looks like a cone used vertically?


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:41 am 
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Interesting - I received an email early last year from a friend who was marshaling at Prescott

"Anyway, I was engaged by another (new) Prescott marshal, by name of ########, who says that back in 50's and 60's he drove in rallies for a BMC garage in Stirling (I forget the family name), and drove works cars at some points, but only in UK. He had some convincing stories about Healeys, Riley 1.5's and Minis. However I cannot find any trace of him when I look at old entries or Marcus Chambers /Rupert Jones books of that era. He says he also initially competed under name (something like) Carl Ericson (spookily like Eric Carlson ...) so that his mum and dad would not spot what he was up to.
He went on to tell of several Mini style rally prototypes built I think in late 60's or very early 70's that were powered by the 1709cc OHC engine that Saab & Triumph used (Triumph in the Dolomite of course as 1850cc) - and referred to as MAD Minis, intended to try and compete at a par with the TC Escorts etc but abandoned. Its feasible as I think Standard Triumph were swallowed by BMC in 1968 - I have never heard of these."


More old wives tales??


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 11:27 am 
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Location: 't Gooi the Netherlands
minimans wrote:
Video of the 4x4 mini here https://www.facebook.com/racemini.nl/vi ... 084719939/ The rear suspention on the car is very interesting. looks like a cone used vertically?


:o This film came from me, I did send it to Basil Walles when they where restoring the 4 wheel drive Clubman.

This race is from the 70th at the Valkenswaard cirquit in the Netherlands.
It was not suppose to be seen elswhere on the internet but things will go otherwise.

:geek: Kees.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:54 pm 
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Catmint wrote:
Interesting - I received an email early last year from a friend who was marshaling at Prescott

"Anyway, I was engaged by another (new) Prescott marshal, by name of ########, who says that back in 50's and 60's he drove in rallies for a BMC garage in Stirling (I forget the family name), and drove works cars at some points, but only in UK. He had some convincing stories about Healeys, Riley 1.5's and Minis. However I cannot find any trace of him when I look at old entries or Marcus Chambers /Rupert Jones books of that era. He says he also initially competed under name (something like) Carl Ericson (spookily like Eric Carlson ...) so that his mum and dad would not spot what he was up to.
He went on to tell of several Mini style rally prototypes built I think in late 60's or very early 70's that were powered by the 1709cc OHC engine that Saab & Triumph used (Triumph in the Dolomite of course as 1850cc) - and referred to as MAD Minis, intended to try and compete at a par with the TC Escorts etc but abandoned. Its feasible as I think Standard Triumph were swallowed by BMC in 1968 - I have never heard of these."


More old wives tales??


TBH, I have heard loads of semi plausible stories like this over the years, usually from people who were indeed on the fringes of really being involved, but who like to make themselves sound more important that they ever were. It is undeniable that BMC did do a lot of development in all sorts of directions that never saw the light of day, but often differentiating between the mis-remembered, exaggerated & made up, is almost impossible. This is why I have always found it more reliable, all be it more boring, to rely on original first hand accounts.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:03 pm 
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I did once see a mid engined gearbox for an A series that would have mounted the engine longitudinally & would have given 4WD through a pair of drive shafts connected to a pair of axles. It looked like a fairly serious thing & came from the general area of the midlands but was FAR from being complete & I never investigated further.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2018 7:03 pm 
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mk1 wrote:
Catmint wrote:
Interesting - I received an email early last year from a friend who was marshaling at Prescott

"Anyway, I was engaged by another (new) Prescott marshal, by name of ########, who says that back in 50's and 60's he drove in rallies for a BMC garage in Stirling (I forget the family name), and drove works cars at some points, but only in UK. He had some convincing stories about Healeys, Riley 1.5's and Minis. However I cannot find any trace of him when I look at old entries or Marcus Chambers /Rupert Jones books of that era. He says he also initially competed under name (something like) Carl Ericson (spookily like Eric Carlson ...) so that his mum and dad would not spot what he was up to.
He went on to tell of several Mini style rally prototypes built I think in late 60's or very early 70's that were powered by the 1709cc OHC engine that Saab & Triumph used (Triumph in the Dolomite of course as 1850cc) - and referred to as MAD Minis, intended to try and compete at a par with the TC Escorts etc but abandoned. Its feasible as I think Standard Triumph were swallowed by BMC in 1968 - I have never heard of these."


More old wives tales??


TBH, I have heard loads of semi plausible stories like this over the years, usually from people who were indeed on the fringes of really being involved, but who like to make themselves sound more important that they ever were. It is undeniable that BMC did do a lot of development in all sorts of directions that never saw the light of day, but often differentiating between the mis-remembered, exaggerated & made up, is almost impossible. This is why I have always found it more reliable, all be it more boring, to rely on original first hand accounts.


My thoughts as well, chinese whispers and all that


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