Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Unique 'Mini Gordon' comes for sale

Most of the Minis converted by Wood and Pickett are something out of the ordinary, but the 'Mini Gordon' surely must have been one of the more extreme conversions carried out by the London based coachbuilder. Within a small circle of enthusiasts it was known that the car survived in a suburb of Brussels in virtually untouched condition, with some 50,000 kilometres only on its clock. Now it is offered for sale for just under 20,000 Euros here.

The car was built for Belgium based Eric Gordon, hence it's name, and is said to have been unveiled at the 1976 Brussels Motor Show. But according to Francois Tasiaux from Brussels, it was seen for the first time in public in December 1975 at the Brussels Racing Car Show. The donor Mini used for the conversion dates from 1974 and the project is said to have been encouraged by two Spanish friends of Gordon: a dancer named Elena Vilar and a motor sports enthusiast and racer named Antonio Rodriguez Huerta, but the information that I have is sketchy. Perhaps someone here is able to tell me more about Eric Gordon and his Spanish friends?

The car itself is shortened by 37 centimetres and comes with added hatchback, giving access to a full bar, carrying special bottles and glasses! The cocoa paint job is said to consist of no less then 13 layers of paint of which the colour comes back in the wool rugs on the interior's floor. Apart from that the interior uses the signature Wood & Pickett dashboard plus door pockets and Recaro seats, all trimmed in ivory coloured Connoly leather. Quite a car for city traffic, I'd say.

Mini Gordon on 1976 Brussels Motor Show. Who knows more about its history?
Picture: big thanks to Xavi Enrich

Shortened grille seems odd. Are those shield bumpers from a Renault 5?

Hatchback gives access to bar. Doors and rear lights appear to be Innocenti sourced

Lavish interior ticks all the boxes on Wood & Pickett's accessory list

14 comments:

  1. That's a good one Neil. I have no clue!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, ordered by Mr Gordon. Now in need of work on work and hatch. Gordon is busier feeding his numerous cats than his numerous cars. Francois

    ReplyDelete
  3. pls read "...work on body and hatch..." sorry.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thank you Francois. Do you happen to know more about Vilar and Huerta?

    ReplyDelete
  5. NO, never heard of the name.

    ReplyDelete
  6. The doors on the ”Shorty-Gordy” are not Innocenti.





    They are UK spec, with handbuilt quarterwindows.



    These quarterwindows are made by James Young Coachbuilders.



    They were used on the ”Top Notch” Margrave,s and also by Radford.



    They are Brass with chrome on, and completely different to the Inno type.



    On a Inno the handle sit on the back (upright) and they are smaller (very easy to spot, when you compare them)



    Lower spec / cheaper W&P,s used Innocenti, and there is one on George,s page with Australian quarters.



    I have even seen some that couldnt open at all.



    Hope you find more info ?????? what about mr Gordon himself ????????

    ReplyDelete
  7. Maybe get in contact with oldtimmerfarm. They sell the cars for the owners.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Bart Vanreusel (racing green)22 October 2011 at 09:36

    Went to see this unique car this week, it's in a bit of used condition (especially the seats), didn't expect it to be still in Belgium after all these years.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Very nice! It is supper model car. It’s my dreamed supper car. Mini Cars for Sale

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now I love coachbuilt Minis but that one is truly hidious. Why take a design classic and hack the back off ?? Minisprints were sliced but then they sill look like Minis not freaks !

      Delete
    2. Beaty - eye - beholder… But you'll have to bear in mind that building a 'shorty' (that's what they call 'm now) was never done before this one, I believe...

      Delete
  10. I saw this car at first in 1976 motorcar Expo in Brussels , the car was then for sale with a flyer stating it had a 5 gearbox and airco .. nothing of that ! it's just basically an old cooper 998 that has been modified in the Uk , the doors are not Innocenti but the first windup window doors from a standard Mini , In the UK modified quarterwindows not Inno's but the upper door piece is in Stainless steel and seems exactly same as the Inno part , under the frontsubframe sitting small Cooper 998 discs with underbonnet a cooper's servo , probably because those small brakes were really awful in the time . engine now is a red 1275 block maybe from a Metro A plus so this car is far from what it was !! price asking 25,000 Eu ??? madness !
    On top it starts to rust on the front A panels and underbody doesnot look so nice anymore all in all a car that derserves a normal price and a lot of work and attention to bring it up to its former level . I doubt that it ever got a 5 gearbox since in those years there was only the Italian Collotti 5 gears available , a problematic race box with straightcut gears , the airco ??? never seen ! paperwork is problematic to register this car , it won't pass in Belgium anymore because of to much modifications , the opening reargate and the shortening won't make it in Europe as tech specs . maybe in the Uk you stand a chance bit then are you going to change it to RHD steering ?? what with the Wood and Picket dash ? Food for thoughts ! I wish good luck to the buyer .. I am 66 and have been driving and racing all kind of mini's for over 40 years , Cheers B.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi there, interesting reading.
    I have a shorten de-seemed classic morris mini with a metro 1300 engine which has been in my garage for the past 20 years. After completing, got side-tracked with marriage and life. Garage got full up with stuff and could not take it out!
    I think its time i sold it. Any offers!
    g.talat002@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete