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BYGONES: Mishaps along way for these iconic cars

By Herald Express  |  Posted: January 12, 2014

  • crunch: The Mini in the front window of Arthur Cooper off-licence in Torwood Street in the 1980s

  • watery grave: Mini in the tidal Dart at Ashprington in January, 1986

  • up she rises: A Mini being hoisted out the River Dart at Totnes with the help of a diver in February, 1985

  • BEACHED: A Mini Metro on the rocks at Meadfoot beach, Torquay in February, 1994

  • TOWED AWAY: A recovery vehicle arrives to take away this crashedMini crash on the Newton Road in March, 1962 INSET: One of the first ever Austin Minis launched in 1959

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MINIS have been rolling off the production line since 1959. They are still building them, though radically redesigned, bringing total numbers to more than six million.

Here's what happened to a few of them on the highways and byways of South Devon.

Some were written-off in crashes, like the collision on the Newton Road in 1962. Others ended their day in spectacular fashion like the Mini estate in the window of Arthur Cooper's off-licence in Torwood Street.

Then there were watery graves either through genuine mishap or illegal dumping. The vehicle in the Dart at Ashprington in 1986 looks a long way from home. How did it get there?

In 1980, the Mini Metro was launched by British Leyland as a sister car. In 1994 one found its way on to Meadfoot beach. How it got there was a mystery.

Classic minis are now treasured. They were the first car for a generation and all of these right-offs would now fetch many thousands of pounds if restored.

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2 comments

  • TorbayFan  |  January 13 2014, 10:31AM

    TrotskyCod - What twaddle! I doubt there's any statistical evidence to support your comment. If they have been involved in a large number of accidents, it probably bears some relation ship to the total number of these cars sold. Furthermore, the Mini was built to safety design standards of the late 1950's: the current Mini is build to safety design standards of this century. The current Mini was basically designed in the UK, with minimal input from Germany, and is built in the UK (at the Mini plant in Cowley, Oxford).

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  • TrotskyCod  |  January 12 2014, 11:06AM

    These old mini's top the league table for the car involved in the most road crashes. They are now redesigned and owned and made by Germans, they are much safer now.

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