Nothing quite encapsulates the joys of a little British car quite like the Austin Mini. Easily recognized by car fanatics and general public alike, the Mini has come to represent what an approachable and fun-to-drive car looks like. This white example on eBay has the bonus of being a 1964 Countryman model, which adds some additional utility for weekend adventures.
The Countryman, first sold from 1960-69 during the first generation of the Mini, benefits from a 3.75-inch wheelbase stretch compared to the standard car, as well as some stylish but non-structural ash wood trim around the barn-style cargo doors. (Austin also sold all-steel Countryman models, but they were never as beloved or popular as the woodies.) The wheelbase difference certainly looks more dramatic in photos when comparing the Countryman to the “bulldog stance” of the standard Mini. While larger in size, the Countryman never got more power, using the same 850-cc four-cylinder under the hood.
The dealer selling this white-over-red mini-wagon describes an interesting story before the car’s restoration in 2017. The dealer claims damage to the front fender caused the owner to put the Countryman into storage, just a few years from new and with 30,000 miles on the clock, where it remained until it was rediscovered and purchased in 2017 by a “high-end paint facility.” Since then, it has benefited from a restoration to the gleaming condition seen today.
The original 850-cc engine was pulled in favor of a 1,275-cc four-cylinder—a common swap given that this engine was standard in the mid-’60s hot-rod Cooper S—which now sits in the little engine compartment. The 1,275-cc engine is rated at 76 hp, which is plenty of push for a car that weighs about 1,400 pounds. The dealer does mention the original engine is available for the new owner to keep with the car.
The interior follows much the same theme as the engine compartment, with new carpet and seat upholstery thats makes the space look quite tidy. These early Minis are known for large interior space thanks to the small wheels that were pushed out to the corners of the car, allowing the cabin to grow.
The $24,500 asking price is a bit high based on Hagerty market data. Comparable cars are selling more commonly in the mid-teens, so it would be worth tossing in a bid or making an offer with that information top of mind. Considering the recent work done, this Countryman could be a great example for the right price, and the fact that it’s got a fun story to tell is just icing on the cake.
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