The idea of a 49-day, 8,000 mile driv"> The idea of a 49-day, 8,000 mile driv"> The idea of a 49-day, 8,000 mile driv">
  • May 1st 2006 at 5:01PM
  • 5

The idea of a 49-day, 8,000 mile drive  from South Africa to England would seem to suggest something rugged and roomy-- a Land Rover Range Rover, perhaps. But a trio of lightly-modified MINI Cooper S hot hatches have just completed the trek, having ventured through 10 countries (including Botswana, Egypt, and the Sudan).

In order to make the sojourn on questionable (occasionally non-existent) roads, MINI prepped the cars by boosting ground clearance to 230mm (around 9"), reworking the shock absorbers and fitting steel wheels wrapped with more durable tires. Rear seats and interior trim was jettisoned in order to free storage space for the requisite pair of spare tires, along with food and sleeping provisions.

The epic trip began March 8 in Johannesburg, South Africa, and wended its way to the MINI's plant in Oxford.

[Source: MotorTorque at]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      I think it proves very little. Given the same modification just about any modern vehicle will plow through the same path. Just another publicity stunt :-)
      • 9 Years Ago
      Sounds like quit a thrash but it should have been easy in specially prepared MINIs compared to the similar drive undertaken a couple of years ago by a South African enthusiast in a vintage MGB-GT. He succeeded without companion cars, co-driver, or any form of support team along the way.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Damn, I own and love a Cooper S but would dread using it for such a trip. The people who did the driving & riding most probably never want to get into one of them for the rest of their lives.
      • 9 Years Ago
      could we be seeing a wrc mini down the road? safari rally here we come!
      • 9 Years Ago
      I like the way the Mini looks jacked up on steelies, its pretty badass.