Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Enzo's Cooper 'S' - the plot thickens

It did take a while before the promised pictures of the presumed Mini owned by Enzo Ferrari came in, but they have arrived after all. And I can tell you they appear to be in the favour of the car's history.

From what I understand from the paperwork, the car, an Austin Cooper 'S' with chassis number 552189, was imported to Italy on 12 December 1964. It was issued on a Modena number plate '116703-MO' on 29 January 1965. The price for which it was sold was 1.825.000 Italian Liras and the owner is clearly described as 'Ing. Ferrari comm. Enzo' at an address in Modena. The car kept the Modena number until 14 March 1970 when it was handed over to the next owner who paid 500.000 Liras for it. As far as I can see there is no mention of a paint colour.

Thanks to Virginio Bolla we now have many more detail pictures of the outside and inside of the car, too. Apart from the bad spraying job, the modified (Carello) light units can be seen well, now, as the quarterlights. And what's more: the same goes for the interior. That, too, is clearly modified heavily. The doors benefit from wind-up windows (A Tilling conversion, or something made in Italy?); the door cards are different from anything I have seen before on a Mini. Carpets and seats (Microcells) are red and there's a wood rimmed steering wheel and dashboard (by Hooper) with extra gauges. Among them a lovely Italian rev counter with the redline set at 6,500 rpm. Under the dashboard a radio and speaker is mounted. The rear view mirror is replaced to the dash rail.

So there we go. Meanwhile, a recording from the late John Cooper has surfaced in which he mentions: "Enzo Ferrari owned three different Cooper S’s at different times, which he used to go up in the hills and tear around with when he got bored” Question is which one this could be? I look forward to hearing what you guys think.

There are differences from the car on the old pictures but there is a link to Enzo Ferrari
Picture courtesy Virginio Bolla
The interior is a coachbuilt job in red. Note the rev counter with 'giri' rather then 'revs'
Picture courtesy Virginio Bolla
Wind-up windows and quarterlights are another clue. Who carried out this job?
Picture courtesy Virginio Bolla 
Paint job is not the best. Could there be silver grey paint underneath the red?
Picture courtesy Virginio Bolla 
Austin Cooper 'S' power train is a correctly stated as a 1275 in the Italian documents
Picture courtesy Virginio Bolla 
Turin number plates came in 1970 when the car was sold to its second owner
Picture courtesy Virginio Bolla

4 comments:

  1. The seats are Microcell's not Restall's.
    Mark F

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Mark, amended now. What do you think about it generally speaking?

      Delete
  2. Interesting find! Thanks for coming over to f-chat.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The wind-up windows look like they could have been done by Tillings.

    ReplyDelete