1985 MINI MOKE
ENGINE 998cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 40bhp@5200rpm TORQUE 50lb ft@2500rpm MAXIMUM SPEED 84mph 0-60mph 27.9sec FUEL CONSUMPTION 35-45mpg TRANSMISSION FWD, four-speed man MoT 12 months ODOMETER 4629 miles
WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?
Having covered fewer than 8000 miles from new, the still-tight suspension gives a firm ride, though with some corner roll. No power assistance means that the steering is a little heavy at low speeds, but there’s no slack and even small movements of the steering wheel are echoed by precise actions from the road wheels. The four-speed manual gear shift has a long throw and the gate’s a little rubbery but all ratios select easily. The engine has smooth acceleration, the car feeling faster than it really is.
What little bodywork there is has been kept immaculate. There are no marks on the white paint nor dings in the panels. It’s just as good underneath, where it appears to be totally rust-free. The Moke wears the correct 13in steel wheels shod with new tyres, and the original factoryfitted hood, which stretches over the full roll cage, looks like new. The front and rear nudge bars are painted silver to match the roll cage, and heavy rubber wheel arches help keep road spray off the occupants.
HOW’S THE INTERIOR?
Utilitarian at best! There’s no carpet, just rubber mats and not much dashboard. A heater and demister hang beneath the instrument pod, which contains just a Mini speedometer and four rocker switches. The narrow showerproof black vinyl bucket seats are like new and the chunky Austin steering wheel is good to hold; the 1980s/’90s-style Austin-badged centre hub is non-standard, but in keeping with the spirit of the car. Front seats are original and fitted with headrests. The driver and front seat passenger get red inertia reel seat belts, but those in the rear have to make do with static lap belts. All but the driver get a grab handle on the wide sills.
UNDER THE BONNET
The little A-series engine is barely run in and amazingly smooth, while the rest of the running gear feels similarly tight and factory fresh. The engine bay is generally very clean, though there is some minor surface rust in places such as the cylinder block and clutch release cylinder. There are no worrying noises or exhaust smoke, and the fluids are clean, to the correct levels and appear to be healthy.
THE CCW VIEW
Built at the Portuguese factory and ordered by an English expat living there, the car started life as a left-hooker and covered only 3000 miles before being converted to right-hand-drive in 1994 by official Moke importer Duncan Hamilton Ltd when its owner returned to the UK. The heater, rear locker and mphcalibrated speedometer were fitted at the same time. The car’s history is well documented and it remains in fantastic condition, having spent its first decade in a dry climate. A Moke Club inspection has confirmed that it is all correct for the year.