Everyone loves a classic Mini, don’t they? For many folk, it was the first car they modified or made their own, and that kind of handcrafted personalisation has remained a key attraction for many.
This eye-catching restomod is probably one of the most extreme examples you’ll encounter, a previous owner having undertaken a complete rebuild of the vehicle, with almost every inch having been lovingly rebuilt, personalised and enhanced.
The History and Paperwork
First registered in November 1980
7 owners from new
Historic vehicle status: tax and MOT exempt
MOT until August 2023 (owner has maintained MOT record)
Restoration undertaken over 8 years by an ex-Rover engineer
Mileage reset after Nov 2007 during restoration
Stored under cover and in a garage
Owner’s handbook included
Original Mini Workshop Manual and period Haynes Manual
Previous MOT certificates, some back to 1991
Some receipts for maintenance
Blue and Grey leather upholstery
Walnut veneer trim
Custom instruments and controls
Remote central locking
Period Philips radio/cassette
It’s clear that a lot of time, love, craftsmanship and money has been poured into the restoration of the Mini.
First, you notice the two-tone leather upholstery that’s been applied to the seats, dashboard and centre console. It’s in very nice condition, with barely any evidence of wear or use at all. The fact that it reflects the exterior colour scheme is a nice touch.
Complementing this and adding a touch of luxury, walnut veneer has been added to the dashboard fascia, door caps and centre console. A matched wooden gear knob and wood-rimmed steering wheel complete the look and neatly tie everything together. The work has clearly been carried out to a high standard, and there’s no evidence we could discern of delamination, UV damage or cracking to the veneer.
All of the driving controls present well, with the previous owner having installed custom gold-faced instruments and even a pair of polished cupholders in the glovebox. It appears that the steering column is a later British Leyland product (possibly a Metro), with the accompanying indicator and wiper controls. Remote central locking has been installed, along with remote opening doors. However, an issue with the immobiliser has meant it has been partially deactivated, which has affected the remote opening of the doors.
Throughout the cabin, colour coordinated blue carpet has been fitted, which appears to be in very good condition, with no notable damage or staining.
Extensive bodywork modifications
Two-tone Metallic Royal Blue and Silver paintwork
Two-pack lacquer finish
Comprehensive underside treatments
Custom mahogany coloured load bed
13” Minilite alloy wheels
Whereas many car enthusiasts may add some new wheels or maybe change the colour of their car, the previous owner decided to completely rebuild this car, modernising and restyling it as they went.
The bodywork has been completely reimagined, with a custom bodykit (wide arches, front and rear bumpers and side skirts), additional front and rear mesh grilles, integrated fog lights, non standard headlights and custom front wings, M3 style door mirrors, custom rear lights and that smart two-tone paintwork.
The finish is very good, and the paintwork looks very good. There is the odd blemish and minor scratch, but generally this looks to be a very accomplished restoration.
At the rear, the load bed has been stripped, the steel has been painted in Hammerite, the mahogany base and edging varnished (then re-sanded and re-varnished in 2021), the sides of the load bay have been faced with checker plate aluminium and, finally, rubber bed strips have been installed. There is also a spare original Mini wheel with custom graphics mounted to the back of the cab. As can be seen from the photographs, all of this is in excellent condition.
You may notice that there are a number of ‘Wood & Picket’ badges on the vehicle, but this is not believed to be a genuine W&P car.
Wisely, the owner chose to fit classic 13” Minilite alloy wheels, with a shining silver finish. These present superbly, looking to be in near-new condition and perfectly suit the vehicle. The only issue we could see it that one of the centre caps appears to be missing. They’re shod in Yokohama tyres that look to have plenty of tread and seem to be in good condition.
Looking underneath, it’s apparent just how much care was taken during the restoration. The underside looks to be in superb condition, with no evidence of damage, corrosion or anything else that would cause us concern. Apparently, during the restoration, both subframes were removed (possibly replaced with new items), repainted and refitted, then the floor was freshly undersealed. As such, it should be good for many years to come.
998cc A series (believed to have been rebuilt less than 500 miles ago)
Twin SU carburetor conversion
4-speed manual transmission
Comprehensive restoration to suspension components
Custom twin-exit exhaust
Featuring a classic 998cc A-series four-pot engine, which the vendor believes ,may have been rebuilt during the rebuild, this charming little Pickup should have many years of service yet to give. The owner rebuilt the engine with twin SUs, emulating the early ‘Cooper’ set up. It’s said this makes quite a difference to the performance and the truck is therefore much more usable in modern traffic.
As part of the rebuild, all the braking and suspension components were stripped and painted or refurbished as necessary. In 2021, a new steering rack was fitted, along with new track rod ends.
Under the bonnet, the engine bay looks very clean and tidy. We’re told by the vendor that it may need a carburettor tune-up, and that there is a very slight oil leak when the engine is running, which stops as the engine cools, which stops as the engine cools. Otherwise, they assure us that the car drives very well, with fine handling, effective brakes and an excellent exhaust note.
In reality, far too much work has gone into this striking creation for us to list it all here. But you can rest assured that the previous owner has clearly spent an incredible amount of time, money and effort making this handsome Pickup as good as they possibly could.
With some choice modification and clever upgrades, finished to a high standard, we can certainly say that this is a Mini Pickup quite unlike any other. If you’re looking for your next show vehicle, or simply love to own something distinctive and truly one of a kind, then this is definitely the Mini for you.
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1980 Austin Mini 95 Pickup – Restomod
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