s well as being a long-time Mini fanatic, Iain Ayre is also a committed builder of one-off cars — his book The Kit Car Manual (Haynes), is highly recommended to anyone considering the home construction of a kit car.
Inevitably, some of Ayre’s componentcar expertise rubs off on this new book — so, along with loads of practical guidance regarding Mini restoration, the reader will also find sections offering advice on modern upgrades and repowers. Some of the more radical conversions detailed involve rear-wheel drive and Honda VTEC engines.
However, the real meat of this book is the author’s expert coverage of all aspects involved with restoring a Mini and all the skills required to handle that task. As such, the book looks at everything from selecting the right tools, evaluating and checking a potential project car to bodywork repair, interior restoration, and the refurbishment of all electrical and mechanical components.
Many books of this type, while offering a boot-full of practical advice and guidance, often end up being as enjoyable to read as your granny’s shopping list — however, Ayre’s dry sense of humour is present throughout, and I even found myself laughing out loud as I absorbed one or two of his eminently valuable lessons on Mini restoration.
If you’re planning to tackle a Mini restoration — or, God forbid, are thinking of pepping up your knackered old 1275GT by bolting in a DOHC Japanese V6 — then this is the book for you.