BMW didn’t own the Mini brand until the ’90s and didn’t revive it as “MINI” until 1999, with the reborn MINI Cooper. So cars like the original Mini Cooper aren’t exactly relevant to the BMW brand. But buying brand also includes that brand’s history, and classic Minis are awesome, so we celebrate them here at BMWBLOG. In this new video from Hagerty, we get to see the engine from a classic Mini get a full rebuild and, if you’re a wrench-head like myself, it’s very satisfying.
This classic Austin Mini Cooper S was found in a barn and its engine was desperately in need of some love. Thankfully, that’s exactly what it got.
In this video, the 1,275 cc naturally-aspirated four-cylinder engine, from 1965, gets a complete tear down, all the way to the bare engine block. During its tear down, you can see all of the gunked up old oil in the valvetrain and carbon build up on the valves themselves, proving that it was in desperate need of care. It then gets completely cleaned, restored, and rebuilt. Its engine block, cylinder head, and valve cover were also painted green, appropriate for vintage Mini. All new pistons, valves, and essentially everything else complete the engine rebuild.
Interestingly, they also rebuilt the four-speed transaxle manual transmission, giving it new life. It only makes sense, though, as it would be unwise to completely rebuild an engine and then pair it to an old, dying transmission.
Once it’s done, they put it all back together and fire it up. It doesn’t quite start properly at first but they eventually get it running. And once it does run, it’s incredibly satisfying for the team, knowing just how much work and time went into rebuilding it.
Having driven a classic 1965 Mini Cooper S myself, I can honestly say that this video made me very happy. The ’65 Cooper S was one the most fun cars I’ve ever driven and this video made me want to go buy one.