Depending on where you live, you may have noticed just a few more Minis on the road than you may normally see. This past week was the annual Mini Takes the States events, where owners from all over the country come together to drive thousands of miles in what is an automotive institution. Since 1959, the Mini has stood as one of the cornerstones of car culture. The British Motor Corporation – later British Leyland then the Rover Group – produced over 5.3 million examples of the original Mini. When BMW took over the Rover Group in 1994, they also acquired the rights to the “MINI” name. As the Germans sold off Rover Group in 2000, they kept the rights to that name, and produced the Mini we know today.
From the west coast to the east, Mini Takes the States encompasses thousands of miles across several states, in two legs. In today’s video, Sarah joins the mass of Mini owners who take part in the enormous event every single year. Both legs of the event eventually converge at Keystone Resort, high in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. The west route starts from Portland, Oregon, while the east route starts from Orlando, Florida.
What makes the modern Mini?
The most modern Mini Cooper, the F56 model, debuted in 2014 and has seen some minor changes since then. Mini has also released a five-door version, called the F56 model, making it a bit more practical, if a bit less “Mini”. The Cooper S model is powered by a turbocharged 1.5-liter engine. Coupled to a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic, the Mini Cooper S makes 189 horsepower and 207 lb-ft of torque.
However, this event covers Minis of all ages, right back to the original model, which packed a tiny engine and go-kart handling. Hard to imagine that the Mini’s original designer, Alec Issigonis, would have kicked off a cultural revolution with this innovative little car.
Check out Sarah’s adventure in the Mini Takes the States event by watching the video above! Come back to TFLcar.com for more news, views and real-world reviews.