Masked ‘robbers’ in a LandRover, a loud explosion with lots of smoke, van doors ‘blown’ open and gold bars loaded into minis for a getaway run… just some of the fun enjoyed by over 1000 visitors to the ‘Mini at 60’ event held in Sunday’s glorious sunshine at Grampian Transport Museum, Alford, to celebrate 60 years since this game-changing car burst onto the motoring scene in 1959. The re-enactment of ‘The Italian Job’ film was just one of the trips down memory lane which included an early morning road run, models wearing mini-skirts and roll neck sweaters celebrating the fashion of the 60’s, and a display and parades of over 130 minis of all ages and variations from 1960 to 2019.
The amazing versatility of the Mini over the last 60 years was clearly demonstrated with variants on show including the original Austin Seven and Morris Mini-Minor, Mini vans, Pick-ups, Mokes, Coopers and Cooper ‘S’s and various performance Minis including rally and track cars. The event was supported by John Clark Mini, who supplied the ‘heist’ getaway cars. Dozens of ‘modern Mini’ owners also proudly displayed their cars, the many models demonstrating that the adaptability of the Mini continues to be a great attraction.
One of the rarest vehicles built on Mini mechanicals, the famous Outspan Orange which is currently on display at the museum, carried commentators Andrew Martin and radio DJ ‘Caz’ into the arena to open proceedings and it was fun all the way until the final parade of Minis to the audience singing ‘Happy Birthday’!
Organiser Roddy Matheson was delighted with the turnout and the weather “It couldn’t have been much better. The day has been a celebration of this amazing little car and an opportunity to remind ourselves just what a revolution it was back in 1959. Today we were able to measures the space inside a ‘classic’ Mini traveller and its 2019 equivalent, side by side, and to everyone’s amazement they were almost exactly the same, despite the modern car being externally very much bigger. Alex Issinigonis was a designer of great vision, starting the trend of transverse engines and front wheel drive which now dominates the market. Today has been a great day celebrating the wonderful car he created!”