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Rover Mini - Abarth 500 Conversion


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#1 callumensor

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Posted 09 July 2023 - 09:45 PM

Hi All,

I bought my mini about a year back now, its a Rover Mini City E 998cc with a modified 1275 ported head so gets off the line a bit quicker. 

Before i got this i had a Gen 3 2.0 F56 Mini with a fully built engine pushing out approx 340hp before i'd even looked at a new turbo and fuelling. 

Anyways going from that sort of power to around 50bhp has got me itching for a bit more power.

I managed to get hold of an Abarth 500 engine with all the ancillaries and wiring loom and started to strip my mini down this afternoon and remove the engine.

I'll keep everything up to date as i go along with my intentions...

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#2 Readers14

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Posted 09 July 2023 - 09:59 PM

Sounds an interesting project!

Shoe horning the Abarth into the Mini is going to be challenging  :lol:

 

Good luck!



#3 callumensor

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Posted 09 July 2023 - 10:07 PM

Sounds an interesting project!
Shoe horning the Abarth into the Mini is going to be challenging  :lol:
 
Good luck!


Absolutely! Although when both engines are at the side of each other, there’s not much difference in size.
Only the gearbox that sticks out a little more

#4 vx220

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Posted 10 July 2023 - 10:03 AM

If the 16v mini forum is still going, I seem to remember there being a FIAT-engined conversion on there, might be worth a look?

#5 thelegg

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Posted 10 July 2023 - 05:05 PM

If the 16v mini forum is still going, I seem to remember there being a FIAT-engined conversion on there, might be worth a look?


https://www.16vminic...7-abarth-pickup

This one :)

Can't wait to see this progress :)

#6 callumensor

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Posted 10 July 2023 - 09:15 PM

If the 16v mini forum is still going, I seem to remember there being a FIAT-engined conversion on there, might be worth a look?


https://www.16vminic...7-abarth-pickup

This one :)

Can't wait to see this progress :)

Yes I’d seen this although it seems to have gone quiet?
Can’t wait to get mine going properly.
Removed the engine yesterday, currently working away so when I get back I’ll be removing the subframe.
Started stripping the interior down too to check for rust etc, the rust I have found is luckily only surface rust so can be brushed down and treated
Considering doing a full respray and changing the colour up a little 😊Attached File  IMG_5569.jpeg   57.11K   3 downloads

#7 thelegg

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Posted 10 July 2023 - 10:21 PM

Yeah definitely gone quiet again but there was a quiet stretch a while ago then suddenly an update so who knows lol.

What's your plan then, make a modified mini frame or build something more stand alone so to speak?

Your mini looks in good condition :) normally they've been jacked up on the floors :(

#8 riktanius

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Posted 13 July 2023 - 09:13 PM

Following... Living in Italy, this has my attention. 



#9 callumensor

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Posted 13 July 2023 - 09:45 PM

Yes luckily it’s actually in really good condition, the only real bad part I’ve found on it so far is the rear right wheel arch needs replacing,
I’m planning on getting a bare tower and then welding the mounts to the bare tower with a frame being made around it :)

#10 callumensor

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Posted 16 July 2023 - 09:24 PM

Had a spare hour this afternoon before the neighbours turned up and ended up in the street bar lol.
Front end off and next step is to remove the front subframe.
Front subframe is in excellent condition and to be fair, so is the rest of the car so far.
Making life much easier for sure :D

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Edited by callumensor, 16 July 2023 - 11:16 PM.


#11 callumensor

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Posted 23 July 2023 - 05:22 PM

Made a bit more progress today, removed the front subframe and the inner wings.
Found some bodging from the previous owner which I’m going to sort out.
Just been and bought a welder and ordered the windscreen corner repair panel.
Inner hinge repair panel and the gusset closing panel because this is missing for whatever reason.
In talks with a few people to get a subframe built for the engine.

Just out of curiosity, the steering rack is really smooth and I don’t see there being any problems with it (cars only done 53k miles).
Is it worth replacing while I can get to it or not? Just seems a pointless job if there appears to be no current issues?

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#12 thelegg

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Posted 24 July 2023 - 10:19 PM

If you design your frame right you'll be able to remove the steering rack without dropping the subframe in the future 😉 on a serious note tho if there is no free play in the rack I'd say it's fine 👍

#13 Steve220

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Posted 25 July 2023 - 07:41 AM

Yes!!! I love this idea!!



#14 callumensor

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Posted 25 July 2023 - 08:44 PM

If you design your frame right you'll be able to remove the steering rack without dropping the subframe in the future 😉 on a serious note tho if there is no free play in the rack I'd say it's fine 👍


Agreed haha! And yeah I’ll leave it for now then :)

#15 callumensor

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Posted 25 July 2023 - 08:50 PM

Picked up some goodies today to replace the bad panels on the mini.
Cut out the RH side of the scuttle panel today, just needs tidying up.
Then started cutting the A Post Hinge panel out, need to finish that off tomorrow then I can start to weld them in :)

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