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Rare classic Mini joins Great British Car Journey

A rare classic Mini has gone on display at Great British Car Journey, the award-winning classic car visitor attraction in Ambergate, Derbyshire.

It is one of the last 500 Minis ever produced in 2001, is unregistered, has less than five miles on the clock and still has all its factory plastic coverings and stickers on its windows.

‘Alec’, a Rover Mini Cooper Sport 500 has been lent to the classic car museum by Calver resident Jennifer Ruth Harris.

Jennifer Ruth Harris and Alec.

Named by Jennifer after Mini’s legendary designer Alec Issigonis, the majority of Alec’s miles were put on the clock at Great British Car Journey where Jennifer drove him for the first time 21 years to the day since she bought him.

He has been perfectly preserved since rolling off the transporter from the Mini factory and into Jennifer’s parents’ garage 21 years ago.

Alec now has pride of place in Great British Car Journey’s 10-strong classic Mini collection in the exhibition. The protective plastic still remains on all the bumpers, petrol cap and seats, and the factory stickers have also been left on the windows. However, the protective transportation wax coating, which still remained when it arrived at the museum, has since been removed from the anthracite paintwork and polished by an Autoglym specialist.

“Seeing Alec polished does make me want to drive him but I don’t think I will put him on the road. He’s too precious,” said Jennifer.

Originally bought to replace ‘Enzo’, an almond green Mini with a white roof and named after Issigonis’ best friend Enzo Ferrari, Jennifer always expected to put Alec on the road but never did. When the time came, she decided to rebuild Enzo and keep him running.

“It was during a visit to Great British Car Journey last November that we considered it might become Alec’s new home. Not only can everyone else enjoy Alec but I can pop along and see him whenever I want to.”

Richard Usher, CEO of Great British Car Journey added: “To say we were excited when we saw Alec is an understatement. He is incredibly rare and absolute perfection. We are honoured that Jennifer has chosen Great British Car Journey for its new home.”

Alec takes pride of place within the exhibition of more than 130 classic cars dating from 1902 to 2006 that were designed and manufactured in the UK. As well as the Mini, the exhibition contains some of the motoring industry’s long-lost marques and models, like Morris Minor, Austin Seven, Humber Hawk and Triumph Spitfire amongst many others. There are also two classic Minis available to drive in the Drive Dad’s Car experience at the attraction.

To find out more about Great British Car Journey and purchase tickets for an interactive experience celebrating British motoring visit greatbritishcarjourney.com. Or, for those looking for the ultimate trip down memory lane at the attraction drivedadscar.com.