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MINI 1499 GT recalls classic sports model

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The MINI 1499 GT special edition is inspired by a classic version of the small car but also signifies a change in powertrain direction for the BMW-owned range.

The 1499 GT is inspired by the 1275 GT, a sports-pitched version of the original Mini launched in 1969. Obvious links to the original include the distinctive stripes running along the sides under of the doors, and the increased engine capacity.

However, while the 1969 car achieved its 1275cc capacity by boring out the engine of the then 998cc standard Mini, the new special edition replaces the 1.2-litre engine previously used in the MINI with a 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbo unit – it is understood the 1.2 engine is being phased out of the range to make it easier for the car to meet future emission regulations.

In the 1499 GT, the new engine produces 102hp and takes the car through 62mph from rest in 10.1 seconds. Mechanically the only other change over the standard car is the addition of sports suspension.

Yours in black or white

   

However, the special edition boasts a number of styling and equipment upgrades. It is only offered in black or white, with the side stripe in gold or black accordingly.

A John Cooper Works Sport Pack is added, consisting of 17in black alloy wheels, dark tinted windows and white indicator lenses, while the car also gains a JCW styling pack of bespoke front and rear bumpers, side skirts, spoiler and door kick plates.

Inside there are sports seats in a Dinamica fabric and leather combination, a perforated leather steering wheel with red stitching and black interior trim. The wheel includes controls for various functions, while cruise control and smartphone compatibility are also part of the package.

Order books are open for the new car, at prices starting from £16,990, and the 1499-strong production run will only be sold through UK dealers.

MINI is also launching a new finance package with the 1499 GT – ‘MINI Ready Fuel Go offers one year’s inclusive insurance with a £299 customer deposit and £299 monthly payment.

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Andrew Charman
Andrew Charman
Andrew is the News and Road Test Editor for The Executivecondominium. He is a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers, and has been testing and writing about new cars for more than 20 years. Today he is well known to senior personnel at the major car manufacturers and attends many new model launches each year.

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Latest articles

New Lotus Evija is £1.7m electric hypercar

Lotus has unveiled a long-awaited all-new model in the form of an electric hypercar, the Lotus Evija.

Suzuki Vitara

The Suzuki Vitara has received generally good reviews from the UK media, with our Expert Rating currently placing it in the top half of the small SUV field.

Mazda CX-5

The Mazda CX-5 has received many good reviews from the UK media, with an overall Expert Rating that places it at the top end of the mid-sized SUV sector.

Honda HR-V

The Honda HR-V has received fairly average from the UK media, with our overall Expert Rating currently ranking it in the middle of the small SUV field.

Volvo XC60

The Volvo XC60 has received good to very good reviews from the UK media and has won many awards since it was launched, including the 2018 World Car of the Year.

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