1965 Morris Mini Cooper 970 'S' Sports Saloon Registration no. CBK 99C Chassis no. K-A2S4-550919
'To its credit, the 970 S remained competitive in racing for many years, although after the end of the homologation period many 970 S Coopers were converted to different A-series engines, making the original 970cc car a genuine rarity today.' Chris Rees, 'Complete Classic Mini'.
Considered by automobile historians to be one of the most important and influential designs ever, the Austin/Morris Mini was in production for 40 years and today remains the most enduring icon of the British motor industry.
To many though - its designer Alec Issigonis included - the notion that the Mini might have a future as anything other than basic transport was anathema, and the idea of a high-performance version was laughable. One man though, saw it quite differently. Racing car manufacturer John Cooper already knew quite a bit about tuning BMC's A-Series engine - he was running the company's Formula Junior effort at the time - and a test drive in a prototype Mini convinced him of the car's competition potential. The result, launched in September 1961, was the Mini Cooper, a car that offered a size/price/performance package that was nothing short of miraculous. The Mini Cooper soon established its credentials as a rally and race winner, and the stage was set for even faster versions.
Ringing the changes on combinations of bore and stroke, BMC ended up making the Mini Cooper in no fewer than five different engine capacities, some of which were chosen solely for the purpose of homologation for competitions. One of the latter was the short-stroke 970cc 'S' unit, which was only available to special order. Once the 1,000-or-so required for homologation had been completed, the model was quietly dropped.
This original Morris Cooper S (one of only 482 produced with the 970cc engine) was restored - both mechanically and cosmetically - to an apparently excellent standard by the immediately preceding, and obviously most fastidious, owner. The current owner acquired the car in March 2017. 'CBK 99C' retains its original 970cc engine, complete with AEG151 cylinder block and 12G190 gearbox, while the interior likewise is original apart from the steering wheel. Boasting style and performance in abundance, and described by the vendor as in generally very good condition, this rarest of Cooper 'S' variants is offered with a V5C registration document.