Drive any classic Mini in anger and you really feel like you’re earning your next meal, so just imagine what driving one with a mid-mounted 350bhp supercharged 2.0-litre Honda engine must be like. We think ‘memorable’
The original Mini was not a refined thing to drive. It was loud, bouncy, jiggly and generally damn uncomfortable. So, of course, it makes perfect sense to stuff a supercharged Honda Civic Type R engine into one.
We found this engine-swapped build on eBay UK, and it looks like a real animal. The wide, aggressive track includes wheel arches and subframes by Z Cars as part of the company’s wholesale kit conversion. Drive now goes to the rear wheels, and there’s quite a lot of it. The seller claims 350bhp, which is starting to tickle the limits for various major engine components, but it should be fine if it’s looked after.
All things considered, it’s basically an Ariel Atom with a roof. Sort of.
The engine is in the back where there’s more room following the removal of the rear seats; hence shifting the drive to the rear axle. It’s worth noting that the supercharger kit has charge to spare, if you’re willing to chuck some extra money at the pistons, head and cooling, among other things, for extra power.
We’re having trouble imagining a more violent, visceral four-wheeled attack on the human senses, apart from turning a corner and unexpectedly coming face to face with a Pontiac Aztek.
The advert for the car, which is currently for sale at an eye-watering £22,500, says the brakes have been upgraded, the engine has just been serviced and fitted with a new cam chain, and it’s even been given a Quaife limited-slip differential.
The seller, a man called Jim Morris, says he has spent a lot of time making the car as drivable as possible, and as a cheeky bonus, he says you don’t even need to wear earplugs. Probably.
It looks really impressive, but that price does seem steep. Perhaps the seller is trying to recoup most or all of his investment into the car, but as we all know, modifying doesn’t always add value and it almost never adds more value than you’ve spent – unless you make a business of it. Still, it’s a neat short-cut to brilliance/madness if you can afford it.
We can imagine this being an absolute monster to drive, and it’s definitely a rare project. Let us know what you think in the comments.