MKI SHELL AT NEC
Prototype BMH bodyshell attracts a phenomenal response.
Mini fans were in for a real surprise at the recent NEC Classic Motor Show on November 11-13, with a British Motor Heritage prototype MkI shell making a long-awaited first appearance. The decision to display the bodyshell was only made at the 11th hour, with the primer applied in the days before the event and the displayed item still early in the development stage.
The move to produce a MkI shell has always suffered from a lack of available tooling. However, the prototype version includes the earlier remote-change tunnel, a full-skirt front panel, externally hinged doors/A-panels and, contrary to many reports, the correct smaller rear window aperture.
BMH is aware that some of the other details are incorrect for a MkI, such as the dash tray, switch panel and roof gutters. Mini Magazine was told these will be changed, however the rotodip hole will not be included unless the customer supplies one, and the bulkhead crossmember will remain as the later type.
Reaction to the shell has been a mixed bag, but it must be remembered this is a prototype, and the level of interest has been phenomenal. Personally, we think BMH should be applauded for its work so far, and look forward to further development. The shell is sure to have a big appeal in motorsport circles, with a knock -on effect of more original cars preserved and a legal way to re-shell cars previously deemed unviable to restore. With this in mind, the new shell could be a real game-changer. For more info, contact the Heritage team on 01993 707200.
BMH’s John Yea and Martin Davies with the new shell.
Earlier remote-change tunnel.