1994 Rover Mini Cabriolet


I bought this Mini new in 1994. The design was originally produced by a German firm; Lamm I believe. For me what differentiates this conversion from most of the others on offer at the time is the nice detail of wind up rear windows. Other fabricators resorted either to pop in side screens or a top that came up to the back of the front window glasses and looked ugly. The hood on this car works very effectively and looks quite attractive when erected although it’s a bit of a whale tail when folded.

The Rover Car Company acquired the design rights from the Germans and the few Cabriolets built (circa 300) shared the Longbridge production line with standard cars. There was some input from Rover Special Products. A prodigious price of £11,950 (standard Cooper £7,125) ensured that only very few were sold.

I found this car, new and unregistered, at a Rover main dealer in Stratford upon Avon. They were selling on behalf of a competition winner who hadn’t been offered a cash alternative. I got a huge discount and used some of the money to fit a Knight Development, five speed gearbox.

We kept the car at our French home for many years and used it only rarely which accounts for it’s under 11,000 miles. It’s great fun to drive although it feels a bit like a go-kart with a correspondingly bumpy ride. The fact that it is a rare, bona fide Rover factory product adds to the appeal.

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