Billed as the replacement to the Cooper S, the Mini 1275GT featured a 1275cc 4 cylinder engine with 60BHP. It was built between 1969 and 1980 and was distinctive due to its Clubman front end. Roy Haynes was in charge of the controversial restyling which wasn’t embraced by all Mini fans.
The world’s first run flat tyre was added to the 1275GT. The Dunlop Denovo tyres were fitted to the 1275GT and were capable of travelling 40 miles at up to 50 mph. Another first that can be attributed to the 1275GT is the use of a flexi printed circuit board behind the dash instruments. This car was also the first mini to be made with a tachometer.
In 1971 the Mini Cooper S was discontinued in the U.K. so the 1275GT was left to be the only hot mini of the time. Although often criticised because of its weight, (1500 lbs) it still boasted impressive stats, with a top speed of 87mph and a 0-60 time of 13.5 seconds. The 1275GT offered more sophistication than the Cooper, with front disc brakes and an improved interior.
From 1975 British Leyland offered ‘Special’ models of the 1275GT, with an additional 40bhp, reclining seats and a bespoke green or white paint job. The 1275GT’s radiator grille was originally fitted with a vertical Mini badge and GT lettering, but later cars had the Mini lettering placed horizontally in the centre of the grille with the GT badge deleted. Although this may have saved money it was unpopular with fans.