Baby, you can drive Macca’s car!
Collector pays £180,000 for his ’65 Mini (no, it’s not a Beetle)
THE classic Mini is the car that embodies Britain’s swinging Sixties.
But few examples do it quite as well this one – bought for Sir Paul McCartney in 1965 and featured two years later in the Beatles film Magical Mystery Tour.
Thanks to its history, the Mini Cooper S DeVille sold at auction in Indiana in the US, for £182,000.
It is one of the four cars ordered for the band by Beatles manager Brian Epstein.
Custom finished in 1965 in South Kensington in London by coachbuilders Harold Radford & Co, the car is finished in a decidedly un-psychedelic colour called California Sage Green and has many custom features.
Sir Paul was photographed driving the Mini with Linda Eastman – who became his first wife in 1969 – by his side in the passenger seat.
After he parted ways with the Mini it was exported to the US. In the 1970s it belonged Hollywood Hills resident Bill Victor who had the engine rebuilt.
The Mini was then sold on to an owner in the Pacific Northwest region of the US and then to Briton Michael Fisher, who lived in Miami. He had the Mini restored in 2001.
After being bought by Worldwide Auctioneers’ in 2002, the car has been displayed at the Sarasota Classic Car Museum and taken out for shows in Florida.
Of the other three Radford Minis, the whereabouts of John Lennon’s is unknown, George Harrison’s apparently remains with his wife, and Ringo Starr’s was bought by Geri Halliwell last year.
‘Exported to the United States’
The Mini is finished in a shade called California Sage GreenElectric windows - a rarity in the 1960sSporty 1,275cc inline four-cylinder engine, dual carburetors, a four-speed manual gearboxAdditional headlamps mounted within the grilleAn exclusive detail - Aston Martin taillightsThe Radford & Co custom built 1965 Mini Cooper S DeVille features a sliding sunroof
On the road: Paul McCartney with his Mini Cooper in December 1967
The interior was upgraded with luxurious leather sports seats and a matching central armrest.Rich dark woodgrain dashboard with dials by instrument maker Smiths and a wood-trimmed Moto-Lita three-spoke steering wheel