Heritage

MINI celebrates 60 years of iconic style

MINI is celebrating its 60th birthday in 2019.

Photo courtesy of MINI

McCartney. Sellers. Statham. Madonna. McQueen. The names that have driven them are as iconic in their industry as the name MINI is in its.

This year, MINI turned 60. It was on August 26, 1959 that the car made its debut in Oxford, England following the design charge of creating a competitor to German and French micro-cars.

Over the years, MINI has hit a number of milestones, but aside from the overall launch, perhaps the brand's most influential moment is when John Cooper got involved. His development of the Mini Cooper gave the brand stronger performance chops, strengthened by the car's in at the Monte Carlo Rally in 1964, 1965, and 1967.

1964 MINI rally Paddy Hopkirk Paddy Hopkirk won the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally. Photo courtesy of MINI

In 1967, the car took center stage on the silver screen alongside Michael Caine in "The Italian Job." The MINI became a status symbol as owners including George Harrison from The Beatles and legendary actor and motoring enthusiast Steve McQueen purchased one for themselves. After a seven-year run, the first-generation MINI's tenure came to an end.

The Italian Job 1969 Cars racing down staircase in a scene from the film "The Italian Job", 1969. Photo by Getty Images

In 1999, MINI celebrated its 40th anniversary and was named the "European Car of the Century by 130 international automotive journalists. MINI sold 5.3 million cars in its first 40 years in business.

With great privilege comes great responsibility. By 2000, MINI had became part of the BMW family and the company tasked its employees with redesigning the vehicle while maintaining the hallmark equipment and branding MINI enthusiasts had come to know and love.

BMW introduced a new generation of MINI Cooper models in 2001. Cooper, Cooper S, and One models were available. The John Cooper Works range of tuning options quickly followed.

Jason Statham, Seth Green, Mark Wahlberg, Charlize Theron, and Mos Def brought the MINI back to the tip of American tongues when they starred in the 2003 remake of "The Italian Job."

The Italian Job 2003 The entrance at the premiere after-party for "The Italian Job" on May 27, 2003 in Los Angeles, California. Photo by Getty Images

MINI owners were able to have the wind in their hair beginning in 2005 when the company introduced their first convertible. The model, with a full automatic roof, came in Cooper, Cooper S, and One variants. In 2007, the company followed up with MINI Hardtop convertible models and a John Cooper Works grade arrived in 2008.

In the last decade, the company has introduced Coupe, Roadster, and Paceman models, which have since bid "cheerio," but the fresh Countryman and Clubman MINIs are still on sale today.

This year, the company debuted a new all-electric MINI, dubbed the MINI Cooper SE. The model delivers around 125 miles of range and shares components with the BMW i3. The new vehicle will reach dealerships later this year.

Trending News

Nuts & Bolts

 
 

A new Chevrolet festival will feature the history of the Chevy brand.

Photo courtesy Chevrolet

With car shows and street cruising cancelled this summer, Chevrolet is spending a week celebrating all the culture of everything autos this week during a week-long virtual festival - Cruisin' the USA in your Chevrolet.

"Classic car events have served as a place for us to honor Chevrolet's deep automotive history and its influence on our present and future with car enthusiasts from around the world," said Steve Majoros, vice president of marketing, Chevrolet. "Cruisin' the USA in your Chevrolet is a way for us to keep that spirit alive."

Chevrolet Suburban The Chevrolet Suburban has been around since the early 1900s. Photo courtesy of Chevrolet

Each day of the August 10-16 festival will incorporate a different theme. In addition to historic footage, guest appearances, and trivia, Chevy experts will provide in-depth looks at some of the brand's most iconic vehicles that are now housed at the General Motors Heritage Center. They'll even share their own custom Chevy builds.

The week starts by celebrating the origins of Chevrolet, in 1911 when Louis Chevrolet and Billy Durant formed the company. The rest of the week's schedule of events includes daily themes:

  • August 10: The Origins and Innovations of Chevrolet
  • August 11: Chevy's Most Iconic Designs
  • August 12: The Proud Truck Tradition
  • August 13: The Peak of Performance
  • August 14: Team Chevy – A Culture of Winning
  • August 15: Chevy's Heritage – A Fan Celebration
  • August 16: Race Day – Cheering on Team Chevy at NASCAR Cup Series at Daytona and Indy 500 qualifying races.

Children can join in on the fun by downloading specially-designed coloring pages, puzzles and activities from the Chevy Design School and exploring cool Chevy themes to outfit their Animal Crossing world.

To gear up for the event, fans can download a collectable 18x24-inch high-resolution printable poster featuring a 1967 C10 CST pickup, 1957 Corvette convertible, 2020 Corvette C8.R and 2020 Camaro ZL1.

Follow along on Chevy's social media channels – @Chevrolet on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest, and @TeamChevy on Race Day – as we celebrate all things past, present and future Chevy. Consumers are also encouraged to share their own fan photos using the hashtag #ChevyLove.

Trending News

 
 

The new collaboration brings together two legendary brands.

Photo courtesy of Aston Martin Lagonda

Drinking and driving do not mix, it Bowmore Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky and the Aston Martin brand do. The two parties have co-created Black Bowmore DB5 1964, a beverage that quite literally brings together a whisky and a legendary car in bottle. Every container has the single malt and a genuine Aston Martin DB5 piston.

The handcrafted bottles hold a spirit named after a significant year in Bowmore's 240-year history. According to the company, “The arrival of a new boiler saw the distillery enter the modern age of distilling as coal fires made way for steam in heating the stills. It was the first distillation from this new boiler that produced the spirit which was to become the iconic Black Bowmore; a sublimely rich and decadent single malt, reflected in awe-inspiring deep darkness."

Black Bowmore DB5 1964 The glass bottles each take one week to craft.Photo courtesy of Aston Martin Lagonda

Black Brownmore was first distilled on November 5, 1964 and has become one of the most sought-after single malt whiskies ever created. This pairing with Aston Martin represents just its sixth bottling. Since 1993, around 6,000 bottles of Black Brownmore have been made available. Just 25 bottles of the 27 produced during this bottling will be sold.

"1964 represents a significant date in the modern history of the distillery," said David Turner, Distillery Manager at Bowmore. “Not only a key moment in how we distilled our spirit, but perhaps even more significant as this very spirit went onto create Black Bowmore. These defining moments are fundamental to the history of Bowmore. This collaboration with Aston Martin has allowed us to once again showcase this iconic single malt in the most incredible way."

The 60s were equally as important for Aston Martin. It was one year before the new boiler was installed that the DB5 debuted. It has been continuously rated as one of Britain's best classic cars, and gained notoriety as the model James Bond drove in several films starring Sean Connery.

Over the years, demand for the DB5 has remained high. So high, in fact, that Aston Martin is producing a run of DB5 Continuation Cars that are exact duplicates of the original, with a few Bond enhancements.

The Black Bowmore DB5 bottle is handcrafted by Glasstrom in a bespoke glass studio in Northeast Scotland. Each bottle takes one week to complete.

The bottle is filled with the whisky, which has the aroma of layers of ripe exotic fruits and creme caramel at first, followed by soft tobacco smoke, aromatic orange peel, and rich black cherry. The whisky features intense flavors of mango, passion fruit, and acacia honey interwoven with a combination of coffee and tobacco smoke. The spice and flavors of the fruit stay on the palate.

The whisky was aged in a Williams & Humber Walnut Brown Oloroso Sherry Butt cask. The 1964 vintage is 31 years old and is 48.6 percent ABV.

In addition to the glass bottle,. Black Brownmore DB5 1964 comes in a handmade presentation box featuring a deep blue color and wave embossing, crafted from string-grain calfskin and featuring a custom solid brass latch and hinges plated with nickel.

This whisky marks the first in what is set to be a series of collaborative products between the two companies. In a partnership set to last years, the products will range from design-led product indicatives to “exceptional experiences".

Black Bowmore DB5 1964 will be available from late Autumn 2020 with a price of £50,000.

Trending News